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‘Musings and Me’: Q&A with author Riddhi Malhotra

Musings and Me is an insightful collection of poems penned by Riddhi Malhotra, who is wise beyond her years. Riddhi has varied interests ranging from debating to swimming to travelling to reading…the list can go on but to put it simply discovering and learning are what give her true joy. In this Q&A with Riddhi, we ask her about her inspiration and experiences with writing this book and her journey as an author.

What are things that you would like your readers to know about you?
I am considered to be a wise owl though a child at heart. Most of the days I am ensconced in my room reading, collecting random trivia or eating. I am your average next-door gal pal going through life studying economics and writing about the world I perceive. Simply put, discovering and learning is what gives me true joy. I advocate for diligence and am mainly calm & curious. If you are ever looking for an engaging conversation do come knocking. (but beware of my cuddly furry pets)
And in lieu of musings, here’s a random fact: funnily enough growing up I considered the writing section of my English tests as a “my time to shine” outlet.
 
What made you write this book?
My inspiration for the book came from my day-to-day experiences in college. Specifically, the first year – marks a person’s beginning of individuality. A sense of freedom and newfound self. This often leads to heightened emotions and to channel them I sought to put pen to paper. Writing a poem a day helped me catalogue my observations and acknowledge how differently similar all beings are.
 
What is the one thing that you enjoyed most while writing this book?
My initial thought while writing was to use my notes as leeway for emotions. However, as I wrote more and more, the idea of sharing that feeling with people in a similar position as me seemed to be a comforting thought. And so it was. Whenever my friends read any of my drafts the one thing that tied us was belonging and a way to relate. Soon I sought after that feeling and above all, it made me and everyone else content. 
 
What was your experience seeing your work in print?
Surreal and grateful. I have always loved and love writing although authoring a book was never an ambitious goal of mine. 

However, with wise, motivating and good feedback I cohesively compiled all my random thoughts. For which I am immensely grateful, to all my dear ones who stuck by me and experienced this little project brought to life. Our shared joyousness knew no bounds. If I am being honest, it’ll never sink in. But on bad days I often just sit and look at my book revelling in the happiness it brought.
 
Which is your favourite book and why?
It’s hard to choose a favourite. I love reading excessively so there’s always a new book making me feel a certain way. 
One of my early memories of being able to read and understand would be Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan. The book series has my heart, it will forever be my comfort book. However, my favourite would be The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chboksy. The book is a wonderful compilation of the protagonist’s life journey, from the way it’s written to the wide range of emotions and characters – it just fits. A lovely easy read that one can relate to and begin to find our infinities.
 
Have you published any other book before? Are you planning to write a new one?
This is my very first book. Sidetracking: I’m over the moon that I can physically hold it and flip the pages instead of scrolling up&down in my notes. To answer the question, yes I do continue to write occasionally but you never know what the future holds.
 
Do you have anything special to say to your readers?
First off, a huge thank you to all my readers and I mean it in the most appreciative, heartfelt and dear way possible. Without you, this little project wouldn’t be. For you all are the ones that make it heard & seen. My motive for writing was to embody the proverb “books are my friends” in reality. I wanted to provide a poetic, cryptic confidant – one that understands. 
But most of all as a reader myself, I wanted to ignite the spark of excitement that courses through me when I pick up a book. That is the magic I believe in. Now being on the other side, as a writer (still can’t wrap my head around it) the absolute joy of seeing someone feel elated is beautifully-magically exhilarating. And I wish that upon everyone, for we all have stories to tell.