Interview with Amod Puranik

What are your five favorite books, and why?
1. Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell. This book forces us to question our assumption that merit results in success and there are other factors in play - you already guessed hard work, right...but 10,000 hours? Read this one.
2. Emotional Intelligence, by Daniel Goleman. I read this book when we were blessed by a child. Yep, it also helps in parenting...
3. Arthashastra, by Kautilya. A detailed manual rather than a book on statecraft, economic policy and strategy.
4. The Count of Monte Cristo. One of my childhood favorites - who does not like to get a boatload of treasure?!
5. Catch-22, by Joseph Heller. A satire aimed at bureaucratic practices of US military...but is true for most government departments. The writing though humorous can also make you angry at the bumbledom.
What do you read for pleasure?
I go to the library (yes!) and simply browse through the volumes till I pick up something about mythology, ancient world history, and business / economics. I also like to read blogs on traveling.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Amazon Kindle
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Reaching out to my friends and theirs on social media as well as cultivating a mailing list on my website.
Describe your desk
I like an organized workspace - perhaps bordering on OCD. You will find it very sparse and only the essentials like my laptop, a notebook, pen and a photo of Lord Krishna...okay, a mug of coffee completes the picture.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in many cities across India since my father who was in Indian Airlines (then) was transferred from one city to another. Actually, even now I move from place to place because of my job. This has given me insights on the different places and people across the globe. My love affair with books began early, when I had to stay at home after moving to a new place (no friends, no TV). When I did get some friends, I just chose those who had comics and books so I could exchange with them! Perhaps this reading habit and my imaginary world made me put those thoughts on paper and my teachers and friends would love my writing. One particular incident comes to mind - it was in my 9th grade, I think. In the English exam, we had to write a letter to a friend in hospital to cheer him up. My teacher (Mrs. Martins; a stern, matronly looking lady feared by all) was so impressed by it that she read it out to the class, pinned it to the notice board and best of all...flashed me a smile!
When did you first start writing?
I began in 2006, when I wrote for some ezines, then the College publications and a few articles in our local newspapers. I now contribute on some tech blogs as also have my own travel blog.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I and my small family love traveling. We began going from place to place very early after marriage. In 2008, we started visiting international destinations and narrated to others of the wonderful places, people and cultures we enjoyed. In 2012, we traveled to Europe and did this in a budget that was one-third being charged by travel agents. Our near and dear ones assumed we are loaded (we are not millionaires). When I told them that we did not backpack across the places (nothing against backpackers, please) and that is easy to travel in comfort with a few 'hacks', they were astonished at the "revelation". So when relatives and friends began telling me to put this in a guide to help others...I said why not - the result is this book - i.Wander: The Definitive Guide to Travel Hacking.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I have so much to share with the world. Speeches can only reach out to so much. But, traditional publishing the way it is, perhaps is a discouraging factor to many budding authors. I didn't want to experience the same agony and rejection. So, here I am!
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Can I answer this after this becomes successful (god willing!)? But, I must mention that Smashwords is an amazingly simple platform for new authors to navigate and get their work up and running in a very short period.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love it when a reader meets me or contacts me to say that s/he really enjoyed my book or if it helped her / him in some way. I go home and hammer double the number of words on the laptop that night :)
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Ahh. This one's simple. I love reading...books, blogs and even magazines. I like taking long walks in the evening - clears my head and I get nice fresh air...
Published 2014-05-04.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

i.Rich: The Definitive Guide to Internet Riches
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 36,700. Language: English. Published: January 24, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Computers and Internet » Blogging, Nonfiction » Publishing » Self-publishing
This is the only 3-in-1 eBook which explains freelancing, blogging and self-publishing. Discover the different forms of online freelancing. What does it take for you to be a successful freelancer (and make it a full-time career)? How to setup a blog and make your blog earn for you through different revenue streams? How to be a successful self-publisher?
i.Wander: The Definitive Guide to Travel Hacking (India Edition)
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 31,510. Language: English. Published: May 4, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » Budget, Nonfiction » Travel » Specialties & interests
You have a desire to travel around the world - a desire of most Indians, second only to owning a home. But you find that travel, especially international trips is expensive. It is not. You can travel abroad at much less...sometimes even FREE! This eBook will let you in on the simple techniques which will enable you to travel in comfort at low cost or even free. [This is an INDIA Edition]