Interview with Qumber Rizvi

When did you first start writing?
At age two.
Do you mean the literary stuff? Around three years ago, in 2012, I wrote my first publishable work - Just To Hold Your Hand.
It was met with loud critical acclaim.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Being a control freak.
Hullo, this is the Internet age. Who needs to go around publishing companies who would take time, bucks, and efforts?
Here, it's me who controls everything. Manuscript, cover, design and format, price, everything.
Definitely, being a control freak.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yep. It was named The Four Fingered Man. Wrote it when I was about 5. An adventure. Would have made NY bestseller.
I feel cheated!

Tissue?
*sniffs* Thanks.
What is your writing process?
Aside from that unpublished bestseller when I was 5?
In real solitude, whatever strikes me, I ink it down on paper.
Later, if I like it, I type it out and publish. And then sit giving interviews.
How do you approach cover design?
Besides the writing work, I am a geek. I have taste of graphic designing.
I usually design my cover myself. And hate it. And design another.
I designed the cover of Wanderer's Diary: Daydreams. In two tries.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
If we are not talking about the Snow White story I read in nursery, I think it was some vampire trouble named Bite.
An impact? Yeah, I was continuously thinking throughout the book, "Hey, I can write that."
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I look for the authors I love. Then the synopsis, title, cover, genre, do the trick.
I usually look for ebooks on Aldiko Market, Amazon, and Smashwords Market.

And... On dark and stormy nights, when nobody's looking, I have been known to skulk through the database for free fictions. Not some crap fantasy series or religious spew, but something real, something which would keep me up all night, and would make me fall in love with the characters.

Otherwise I'm on the quest of reading Richard Laymon's all thirty-six novels. Twelve down, twenty-something to go. Don't make me do math.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
The one which keep me up all night. I'm not talking about the college books I have to read for exam next day.
My favorite books are with characters so real, I yearn them when I finish the book. Or have wits which bend me into two and bring some tears out. Or verisimilitude which keeps me into the imaginary world for so long that I start to feel home. Usually, I want my favorite book to be the one I am reading right now.

You still want me to name five books?
The Stake, The Traveling Vampire Show, and Island by Richard Laymon.
The Hound of Baskerville by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Are You Afraid Of The Dark by Sidney Sheldon.
Why? Because I loved them, I think.
Describe your desk
It's a wooden, polished stage of clutter with a laptop on it.
In other words, my favorite place to live and to go on picnics.
Who are your favorite authors?
To be frank, I'm much of a narcissistic person, who would rather be favorite of himself, and vice versa. And would be very loyal about it.
Well, If you really want names, we will pretend my favorites are Richard Laymon, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Sidney Sheldon.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
To be creative and to do something creative with my life.
Usually my mother shakes me awake.
Even I almost slept through the Nepal 7.9 Earthquake.
What are you working on next?
What am I not working on next?
Every next thought gives me an idea about a new book which doesn't fit in the list of 98,254 newly created genres. That's 98,268 now.
But as we speak, I'm working on a buzzy-adventure-cum-horror-fiction novel.
I have not yet decided its name. But I think I'm not going to call it "When Churchyards Yawn". 98,321 now.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
What's with the personal question? I barely know you. At least buy me a drink.

When I'm not writing, I'm writing something else.
I mean, I have a blog. A company to run. I love web designing, and I keep working on it.
In REAL spare times, I read books, play video games, and create impossible scenarios in mind.
What do you read for pleasure?
Oh man, you just don't give up on the personal questions. By the way, I drink scotch, single malt and none of the cheap stuff.

Books. Horror fiction. Usually Laymon's works.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My Zenfone.
What am I, a hype for a deep discount home electronics emporium?
But since you ask, I'd have to tell you that it's a Zenfone 5, available in the brightest colors, but I use charcoal black, and with the greatest accessories.
The plutonium powered nuclear backup doesn't run out easily. Waterproof to a depth of 500 meters makes this thing the perfect e-reader for the hot-tub. Available now at ChickenMan's Hyper Discount Emporium at Hazratganj in Lucknow, UP. Get yours now!
And don't forget to tell them, Qumber Rizvi sent you.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Well, I guess it's giving titles away for free.
My sales on Amazon go upto 700% when my exclusives go for free for one day.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born in Mumbai. But was brought up in Lucknow.
I really don't know how did that influence my writing. Rather, I think what influenced my writing is my crazy imagination power.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Well, that's an inappropriate question, for now.
I have just published the book. Success is yet to come. Please, come.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
It sounds way cooler than saying I'm unemployed and doing nothing since always. And telling them, in mind, to mind their own business.
And when beautiful words keep coming to you automatically and all you have to do is to copy them down in ink.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Yes. That's a real question. Like anyone reading this interview would really want to know that.
And if they did, they could just go and read the blurb or - wait, here's a radical idea - they could read the story!
What do your fans mean to you?
They keep Indian heat away from me. I love them.
Wait. The human fans?
I love them too. I love each of them. And I'd really like to meet one.
Published 2015-09-01.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Whiskey & Weed
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 1,330. Language: English. Published: May 31, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Themes & motifs, Fiction » Poetry » Themes & motifs
Whiskey & Weed is a collection of poems by Qumber Rizvi. Including the title poem itself, the collection contains 20 poems. Themes of the poems vary from love stories and their sad and happy consequences to 'dark of the realms'.
Wanderer's Diary: Daydreams
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,130. Language: American English. Published: April 28, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Short stories, Fiction » Poetry » American poetry
Wanderer's Diary: Daydreams is a collection of emotions, friendship, and practical life. The book includes sketches, short stories, an essay, and poems by Qumber Rizvi. 1. Just To Hold Your Hand (Sketch) 2. Imperfect US (Sketch) 3. The Best Buddies (Story) 4. Change In My City (Story) 5. Forgery (Poem) 6. I Was Blind, But Now I See (Poem) 7. Park (Poem) 8. Internet Is A Boon (Essay)