Interview with Ajay K Pandey, author of “You’re the Best Wife”

Ajay K Pandey is currently working with Cognizant, Pune. He grew up aspiring to be a teacher, but destiny landed him in the IT field. Travelling, trekking and reading novels take much of his leisure time. Travelling and meeting new people has taught him about different cultures and people, and makes him wonder how despite all the differences, there is a bond that unites them. Trekking taught him to deal with challenges like a sport. Reading is perhaps what makes him feel alive. Apart from writing, he wants to follow his role model Mother Teresa and make some contribution to the society. His debut work, “You are the Best Wife”, is based on his life events and lessons. Below are excerpts of our interview with Ajay K Pandey:

The Bookoholics: Your readers have loved you for writing love stories. What is your secret?

Ajay Pandey: I keep on asking the same question from my readers. I am not sure what works so well for them, but the characters and stories always revolve around the common people and famous places. I use simple writing style, and readers felt associated with the story. My writings embody social purpose and social criticism rather than mere entertainment.

Your first book was a tribute to your wife. What are your thoughts on immortalizing love?

Yes, I attempted to do something memorable for her. It was an outcome of a rare feeling that tomorrow I would be there or not, people would read about my love and remember her with respect.

Thoughts about immortalizing the love-

I may sound little filmy to you, but there is no expiry date for love. When we genuinely love someone, we respect a lot; we like to share the good moments with them. The best way to immortalize your love is to keep cherishing the moment that we spent together. I would say a good moment becomes the lifetime memory.

When and how did the idea of writing a third book germinate?

I never wanted to share my life again but there are many reasons to do that. I get many messages asking about me, and my future and few complain about the tragic ending.

One reader friend said – You cannot leave everyone in tears. You cannot mark a trend of negative endings. After all, we are Indians. We believe in happy endings. If it is not happy, it’s not an ending.

That was the moment I thought to write the next book.

Your first book was autobiographical, and the latest one is semi-autobiographical. Do you think a personal form of storytelling has helped you connect with more readers?

There is nothing like that both are my own life. It was not something that I crafted deliberately. I would agree with your point; readers naturally connect with real-life characters. They can visualize them, talk to them and see them. Quite often readers ask me, am I meeting Author Ajay or Character Ajay.

Did you think of writing and becoming an author from a young age?

No, in fact, I had not even written a single short story. I started writing because I had plenty of time and pain, I wish to express my feelings, which I thought it should be mentioned in a book.

I started writing a diary which eventually I converted into a full-scaled book.

Your first book, “You Are The Best Wife,” touched so many hearts. Why do you think that happened?

It was not just a regular love story. It was emotion expressed by a husband for his wife. How he sees his most loved treasure is passing in front of him and all he could do just sit and pray. And he realizes the biggest lesson of life which was to live in every moment. It was something straight from the heart and had balance amount of fun and emotions.

Can you tell us a little about your latest book- the plot and characters?

The story revolves around Ajay and Anisha.

Ajay has lost his wife and is deep in depression. No amount of medication or therapy seems to help him as he struggles with his grief. He has only one wish—he wants to immortalize his wife.

Then, he meets Anisha. Anisha is studious and elegant, egoistic, confident and extrovert person, who never compromised anything in life. Anish is shocked at Ajay’s hatred towards God. How can a person hate God? Where would that hatred lead him? Anisha is ready to judge Ajay harshly when a simple, caring and guileless gesture changes her perception of him.

So begins the journey of two people who are poles apart. A journey which will change their outlook towards life.

You have touched upon the topic of depression and how friendship helps one get out of it:

Depression is the outcome of losing interest in life and work. The intensity of depression increases with loneliness. When someone is deeply hurt, they could not share their feelings with everyone. People make fun of their problems we can discuss dengue, swine flu, cancer openly, but we avoid to share about depression. A friend works as medicine to a wounded soul, and companion to a lonely heart. When you have a good friend, you can share your feelings and bearings that will help to heal. Friends can openly discuss the shortcomings without any formalities. I would glad to mention depression is the problem of intelligent, fools never suffer from it.

What is your perception of relationships today? Can love last a lifetime?

Love and relationship is all an emotional thing. The most significant relationship is the intensity of care what a person does, to put the concern straight a mother cares maximum and we all know it’s unadulterated love. For me caring is equal to loving someone. Time is the litmus test for love, initially into any relationship attraction, curiosity and other factors could work, but when time passes, we know the person more. The appeal and curiosity level goes down that is the point we could say real love starts. When love increases with time, it’s a real love.

Are you willing to experiment with a different genre sometime in the future?

I do not decide any genre to write. When an idea comes which I feel which can touch the reader’s cord that is the point for me to pick that story. I am naturally an emotional person so it falls under romance. I like love stories typically having profound messages.  I don’t prefer love stories with a childish theme and forced intimate scenes. Sometimes I also like to read real-life inspired stories.

How much has your life changed since you became a best-selling author?

It’s a fantastic feeling. I started writing for my wife and if I get appreciated its feels like I have done something right for her. It gives a new direction in life which was never explored. I would say I am enjoying every bit of it.