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Sunday, 17 May 2015

Author Spotlight and Interview: Olivier Lafont

About the author

Read my review of Warrior (4.5/5) here


Kritika: Congratulations on the book. Warrior is a mythological fiction. This genre is still in its infancy stage in India. What made you venture into this genre specifically for a debut novel?

Olivier: The first incarnation of ‘Warrior’ was actually a feature film script I wrote more than a dozen years ago, before I moved to Mumbai, so the story has existed since then. I have read and written in the genres of fantasy and science fiction for a long time before, so writing ‘Warrior’ was a natural development. I originally wanted to create an Indian film that would be on the same scale as big Hollywood special effects blockbusters of the time like ‘The Matrix’ and ‘Lord of the Rings’. 

Kritika: What came first: the plot or the urge to write? Was writing always the plan, & the idea was what you were waiting for? 

Olivier: The urge to write is, for me, overarching and fairly constant, so that would come first. I wanted to write from a very young age, around the same time that ideas for stories started coming to me.

Kritika: How has your experience on getting published been till now? Any insights you'd like to share with our readers?

 Olivier: The experience has been straightforward, and of course seeing my book in print was fun and satisfying.

Kritika: Saam, the protagonist of the novel has endeared himself as a demigod. Although he is divine, his fallibility appeals to the reader. Was there any point in the story that you struggled etching Saam? 

 Olivier: I don’t recall having any trouble creating the character of Saam. Once I knew who he was and what it was he had to go through it just developed quite naturally.

Kritika: Writing fiction requires imagination. Add a slice of mythology to it, and we have fiction and fact intersecting at another level altogether. How difficult was the process of laying down the plot? Do you have some work process/pattern?

 Olivier: I was particularly careful about the intersection of fact and fiction, mainly because I wanted the reader to be able to believe that this could and would happen. The structuring of the many elements happened organically and with a fair degree of ease, actually. In this respect it wasn’t difficult, and I don’t have a particular process I follow. Generally I have a sense of the story and the main characters and I know the broad strokes of where it’s all going, but I leave it somewhat open-ended to allow space for invention.

Kritika: We have no doubt you went under the skin of the characters to make them who they are.  Was there any character you especially love or relate to? 

Olivier:  I really love the character of Saam, my hero. I wanted to create an epic, classic hero, someone who is powerful but struggles with his identity, with his life, for me that made for a compelling and relatable character.

Kritika: What do we have in the pipeline? More from the same genre?

Olivier:  There should be more coming in perhaps several genres, but for now I’m busy with a new film script Ive written, for the first time with myself as the main character. Im actually looking for a producer to partner with on it. The film is a really fun comedy, and could be an Indian film or an international one, so the producer could also be Indian or international.

Kritika: Any special moment from the time you were writing the book that you'd like to share? 

Olivier:  Actually every moment of the book was a special moment for me, since I was enacting it in my mind throughout. The thrill of the fights, the fun of the adventure, the threat of danger… all these were moments I felt and experienced intensely, and I hope my readers will as well.

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Source of the review copy: Freebase Studio (Gina Lafont)


To get your book reviewed, read my review policy here. And then contact me here.

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