61st session of An Author’s Afternoon with author, essayist, poet and playwright Anita Nair was a lively session. Anita carved out a niche writing crime fiction and women-oriented stories.
She started out with an advertising company but always wanted to be a journalist. He dreams remained unfulfilled as she did not complete her graduation. She, however, did not let her lack of educational degrees come in her way and began to write with a passion. She was a voracious reader and read up every single book available in her school library.
Her stint at the advertising agency did not dispel boredom and writing for her was therapeutic.
Anita began by writing in her college note book. She loves the good old way of using paper and pen to write instead of modern digital tools. All her writing ventures are preceded by deep research. Every book by her explores a new context, whether it is 17th Century India, child trafficking, child prostitution, History of Kerala and so on.
Her book Eating Wasps was the crux of the session’s discussion. A topic that delves into Kerala’s dark underbelly. She explored some bitter truths like bonded child labours mostly come from Odisha and sex trafficking from Bengal and Bangladesh. Her one book is on Islamic lore.
Inspector Budegowda, a famous fictious character created by Anita, became the darling of her readers. A report in newspaper featuring constable Budegowda inspired her to create this character.
She is inspired by the narrative style of 1001 Nights, Vikram aur Betal. Premchand, R K Narayanan and Markandeya are among her favourite Indian authors while James Hadley Chase and Earle Stanley Gardner are among her favourite English writers.
She has her own fad and uses a Parker pen for writing literary fiction; a Waterman for crime fiction and a Mont Blanc for children’s fiction. Every single book in my life has influenced me in some way she said.