Ravi Shankar Etteth talks ‘The Brahmin’ Series & Writing Tips

Indian author Ravi Shankar Etteth has opened up about the inspiration behind his latest book series, as well as advice to aspiring writers.

Ravi Shankar Etteth talks 'The Brahmin' Series & Writing Tips f

“Even nice guys have secrets.”

Indian author Ravi Shankar Etteth has opened up about his various writing processes.

Etteth’s new book Return of the Brahmin became available in June 2021 and is the sequel to his 2018 novel The Brahmin.

In a recent interview, Ravi Shankar Etteth revealed that his love for historical crime fiction inspired his book series.

He also spoke about the various writing processes he goes through whilst creating his novels.

According to Etteth, there is a gap in the market for historical crime fiction in India.

Speaking exclusively to Times of India, he said:

“India has a terrific medieval and imperial history, but I notice that rarely do Indian crime writers go beyond the Mughal period.

Etteth added:

“Take the work of Japanese classical crime novelist Kurosawa Shuroku or Robert van Gulik’s Judge Dee mysteries set in ancient China, and you will see that there is no dearth of classical historical mysteries in the world.

“I try to fill that gap in India.”

When discussing the planning process for his book series, Ravi Shankar Etteth admitted that your preliminary research is the most important part.

He revealed:

“Research is the most important part of the book because history is the literary ecosystem of the story.”

Etteth also said that he frequently had to use his imagination when writing The Brahmin and its sequel, saying:

“Though much of the costumes, coinage, names, topography, religious conflict, architecture and city planning in my books are real I had to make up the rest.

“I had to stay true to the atmosphere of the book, which at times required leaps of imagination small and big.”

According to Ravi Shankar Etteth, he has no set writing process.

He believes that there is no specific time that he is creative, and ideas come to him at random. He said:

“An idea forms like a hazy ghost, and I let it grow in my subconscious.”

However, Etteth also admitted that he constantly makes notes about anything that may have relevance to his story.

When asked about tips for people who would like to write historical fiction, Ravi Shankar Etteth encourages them to be “courageous and imaginative”.

He also said:

“Research, research, research. And keep in mind the elemental passions of love, hate, greed and ambition to tell a larger human story.

“All books are in essence psychological explanations of why we do what we do and how we do it.

“Even nice guys have secrets.”

Louise is an English and Writing graduate with a passion for travel, skiing and playing the piano. She also has a personal blog which she updates regularly. Her motto is "Be the change you wish to see in the world."

Image courtesy of Hyderabad Literary Festival

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