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For Pune’s debut writers after 60, age is just a number

By December 18, 2017No Comments

Source : Hindustan Times

What drives 60 plus authors to chase their dreams and continue writing? HT speaks to four Pune-based authors on their inspiration to spread the word.


Author Sesh Rao released her latest book  Tania’s Treasure Trove this month. At 72, the ‘young at heart’ writer is full of energy as she speaks about her books, her drive to write and her inspirations. Her husband DVR Rao is also an author known for his books such as Sunita and You Can Make A Difference. The 70-plus duo made an interesting conversation with us about reading, writing and the current literature trends. Sesh Damerla Rao believes your intrinsic nature doesn’t change and everyone has inbuilt characteristics.

“I started writing pretty late when my friend pointed out that the world is missing a writer and everyone should read my works. For me, now the next step is publication. Also, with my books, the royalty goes for a social cause. My marketing ability is zero but when it comes to my books there is this inner energy that comes from within. I literally tell people I meet on the roads about my launch and request them to join us,” said Sesh.

DVR Rao on the other hand writes for the sake of it, he doesn’t really bother about publishing it. “Our writing approach varies. For example, I write, edit and spell check on the screen while she prefers to write and then key in. I can write anytime but I need to take breaks in between. Sesh can write for hours together. I keep writing with an end object and then shape it as the situation develops. This way I have flexibility in my works,” he said.

Young at heart

Leela Gour Broome at 69 has several years of experience working with children. She believes that there are things that Indian kids need to know more about. And, with her works, she tries to all in the gaps and pass on as much knowledge as possible. She wants to leave behind information, knowledge and literature which will teach the generation next about various topics. Her current book The Anaishola Chronicle describes the wilderness and the wildlife of High Wavy, a range of hills where she lived with her husband on their tea plantation for several years.

“My idea is to give children information in a way they can enjoy learning and keep it in their heads. I have put together pictures and words, hoping it will be magnet for teenagers and children to pick the book,” said Leela. For someone who wanted to write since she was 16, writing happened only after she retired. “First it was my education, then marriage, then kids and then my work. I did not find time to write. It was not much later when I purchased a laptop for myself when I started penning words that were in my head for so many years.”

Leela advices that writing is not a money making profession. “It is a dicey path. You have to remember that you will be making very less or close to no money in the first several years. I would suggest that people should take it up as a part time. Having said that writing requires time and you should set a goal on completing it.”

Creating your own path

With 13 books published and over 5,000 pages written, author Meena Prabhu owes her energy and drive to write post the age of 60 to her readers. “My readers around the globe send in love, affection and honest feedback through social media and personal meetings. Their kind words and contact feedback pushes me to do better and write more. My publishers have also played an important role in spreading the word thus making me gain more fans,” said Meena.

Meena believes that a writer need to be honest and truthful to one self. She added that it is okay to get inspired or influenced while researching or prepping for a book, but when it comes to writing a book, a writer must trust his/her instincts. “Your curiosity as a writer will define the success of a book. You may draw inspirations from renowned authors but imitating their style or writing abilities is not right. You have to create your own identity and be content with your flair.”

She added that reading and a lot of reading also helps write better. “Also, most importantly sitting in one place and dedicating time for writing is a must. You have to be loyal to your goal.”

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