Author Chat With Supriya Kelkar

Books and Boba


Everyone here. Cal Tar. The author of American Premiere Pie, as well as a him Sir. Thank you. For joining us today. Thank you so much for having me. So how has it been with? With the pandemic like are you getting any writing done or has it just in chaos for you? It's yeah. It's pretty much been chaos I I I have three small kids at home. So as soon as virtual learning started, I pretty much had to stop writing for a bit. I used to write at like ten o'clock after they would sleep before the pandemic but it was my new year's resolution to not do that and to sleep better. But I'm back to staying up till one am except I'm just like staring at tiktok videos and I'm not doing anything productive because I don't know that's my stress relief right now though everyone's gotTa Cope Right. Totally get to staying up watching just whatever yeah. Today I guess before we get into our questions can you let listeners know? What the book is about. Yeah. So American as Veneer Pie is the story of Laker who is the only Indian American in her small town in Michigan and Lak- feels like she has two versions of herself. There's home Laker who loves watching Bollywood Movies and eating Indian. Food. And School AK- pins her hair over her birthmark and avoids confrontation at all costs especially when someone tease her for her culture. When a racist incident rocks lead co small town she realizes she must make a choice whether to continue to remain silent or find her voice before it's too late. So the book takes place in the Midwest and as I understand it, you also grew up in the Midwest What was your upbringing like? Yes. So it was very similar to lay Kaz I grew up in a small town in Michigan and. The only indian-american or the kid in in town but there are just a handful of us. It wasn't a very diverse town You know we had a rock thrown through our window Someone wrote put a comb in that rat's nest and permanent marker on my locker and high school. There were plenty of incidents of micro aggressions and other ing and you know very obvious racism when I was growing up. So I put a lot of that into Lak- story as well. And how did you get into writing was writing something that you've always done as a kid or was that something that? Came later in your life yeah. It was when I was in third grade, our teacher had us all right these little stories and he bound them as hardcover books and I thought it was so cool to see my name on the cover I decided right then and there that I was going to grow up and be an author somewhere around middle school that dream changed to wanting to become a bollywood screenwriter. So after college I started working as a Bollywood screenwriter would travel back and forth between Mumbai and look. And Michigan and I did that for well over a decade before before my first book, him so was published. So as a screenwriter, did you use a beat sheet for writing by chance? I do so I definitely right all my novels out with a beat cheat first, and then I outlined them I, I write my novels. right my screenplays when I'm prepping them out. So there's a lot of planning a lot of outlining use a three act structure and then I start writing the book. Do you actually follow your cheat. I do. I. So I learned screenwriting at the University of Michigan from Jim Bernstein and he is a screenwriter as well as they. Instructor there, and he sort of you know drilled into us that its structure structure structure. So I spent a long time working on the structure before I actually go to the book and so then that structure pretty much stays the same. Yeah. I was really curious about that because I studied screenwriting in college and Again, it's all about structure. It's all about having your beats there yet but a lot but a lot of the times it depended on the assignment for me I will have their there were cases where I had every single scene like outlined, and then there were scripts where I was like I have the beats but I'm probably not GonNa follow it at all. Writing is unpredictable it yeah. But that's really cool that you actually follow your beats than you have such tight structure for your books because novel writing it's it's a massive project you don't have like. 'cause like scripts are like ninety, two, hundred, ten pages, and you know there are very strict rules to to adhere to write a novel writing. It's just. It's free game. Yeah and much longer like when I first started writing books my editor on a him. So as like you know, you have to pause and take a second to describe what people are wearing and what the scenery looks like. You know because from a screenwriting background, you don't do that because there is a costume designer and there's a set decorator and there are other people to take care of all those details. So it took a bit of retraining to get get. into novel writing but I I do definitely depend heavily on the screen writing background

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