Take Two: Catching Up With Faraaz Kazi (and Giveaway!)

Answer two simple questions and take a signed copy home! Scroll to the end of the interview for more.

The recent winner of the National Debut Youth Fiction Award and also the recipient of the YCOF National Excellence award in Creative Writing apart from being the first Indian author to win the coveted ‘Best Debut (Romance)’ title at the international Goodreads choice awards, Faraaz Kazi has been tagged as the ‘Nicholas Sparks of India’ by many and is rated amongst the top male romance writers in the country. A certified soft-skills trainer and a three-time post grad, Kazi is the Founder and CEO of DigiImprint Solutions, India’s first exclusive promotional agency for authors and artists that recently forayed into handling corporate brands. He also consults for a few public relations firms and publishing houses. Felicitated by numerous institutes, bodies and organizations alike, Kazi is a well-known name in the social media and literary fraternity. He is fondly referred to as ‘The Young Marketer’ and operates a revolutionary blog with the same name and writes for major media houses.

Faraaz Kazi

Kazi is a fellow member of the esteemed ‘Film Writers Association of India.’ Truly Madly Deeply, his debut mainstream romance novel is the only Indian book to have seven category nominations in the Goodreads annual readers’ choice awards and is also the only Indian book in the ‘Top 100 YA Global Fiction’ list. Kazi is a voracious reader and counts singing as his second love.

1.      Let me first share how delightful I am at this opportunity to know you better and to help your fans get to know you even better too. Let’s start this interview with the most important question: How writing, why writing?

I guess as kids we all conjure up dreams- I want to be this, I want to be that when I grow up. I seriously don’t remember whether I wanted to be an author (I remember acting, medicine and cricket in my list of career choices though) but I did start writing at the age of seven. It was a silly adventurous novel about six friends who somehow reach a forest full of cannibals and dangerous animals. I remember it was a novel and not a short-story as most people would expect, because I filled an entire diary scribbling about it. Next, there were a few more fantasy fiction type novels, stemming from watching too many movies and reading too much of young adult fiction.

It was not until two years back, when I had taken a break from academics and had time on my hands, so I decided to enrol for a creative writing course. It opened a dormant side within me and I realised somewhere I always wanted to be a writer (not quite a full-time one though. You don’t make much of a living that way unless you end up writing about someone’s points and spending nights in call centres and then make three mistakes in a couple of states) as I found my romantic short-stories to be applauded by the other 30 odd students around me. And then, that was motivation enough to try my hands on a novel. Luckily, for me I had a readymade plot.


2.       Your debut is a romance novel. What does love mean to you? If you don’t mind us prying (because that’s what it is!) has there ever been someone in your life you’ve truly, madly, deeply fallen for?

Well, there is always that special someone in everybody’s life, isn’t it? It depends how you define your relationship with them, love transforms and so does its definition over time. However, it will always remain the purest form of emotion that a human heart is incapable of holding because true love is boundless and stretches till infinity.


3.       Can your readers look forward to your next book? Is there any project which you are working on?

My second books is currently lying with my agent and we expect to sign up with a leading publication soon if all goes well, before that I may not be able to divulge any more details about the project but trust me, this one will work on a far greater emotion than my first. The project would be a sort of first attempt in the Indian literary segment on such a large scale. And I’m sure people will like it!

Apart from that I’m slowly making headway on the third which would be more serious in nature and a unique love story.


4.       I am sure I speak for all of us when I say we’re looking forward to them. Would you mind sharing with us your inspirations in the writing world?

I love JK Rowling, not just for her creation of such an imaginary world but also the struggle she underwent, both personally and professionally, to publish her first book. Khalid Hosseini and Jean Sassoon awed me by displaying the turbulent middle-eastern areas in their writings. Cecilia Ahern and Nicholas Sparks touched my heart with their romantic works and I drew a lot of inspiration from them.


5.       You have completely established yourself in the writing industry with TMD (the only Indian novel to make it to the Goodreads Best Romance Novels category) and your booming book publicizing agency, ‘Digi Imprint Solutions’. What have your experiences been like? Any regrets? Any tips?

One learns with time. Back when I was new, I wouldn’t have been half aware about things I am today (related to the industry). Let me just suffice by saying once bitten, twice shy. I have had quite some experiences (not at all pleasant) in dealing with some kind of people for my first book and that only makes me wise enough so as not to soak my hands by the fire again.


 6.       What do you love the most about reading and writing?

The best thing about books is that they take us to an almost illusion-like world, far away from the happenings of life. Mostly, when I’m in the doldrums, you’ll find me with a copy in hand, lying on the bed and soaking in the words. Writing is therapeutic, cathartic and you end up discovering more and more about yourself in the process- sometimes making you question your own self-awareness. There’s no feeling in this world which can replace the joy of reading a good book on a rainy evening with some hot pakoras for company.


7.       Any advice for wanna-be writers looking to get published?

Most important thing is they should pursue writing only if they are confident about their work and are capable of handling criticism. Today, I see so many writers with poor writing skills, coming out with their own autobiographical fiction set in some engineering college or management institute. Small publishers lap it up because the market (read nouveau readers as India is seeing a growth in habitual readership) demands so. Some who have good financial backup even go to the extent of starting their own publication houses that just produce their own title and no one hears about them again.


Second most important thing is too approach publishers directly as much as possible. It doesn’t make sense for new writers to trust strangers and I learnt it the hard way. Yes, it does get irritating while you await replies of the publishers but that also teaches you perseverance and patience, two of the most important qualities for a successful writer. Also avoid people who ask for money even if they are literary agents. At the end of the day, they will return you the manuscript with some changes that a tenth grader could have picked up and you’ll end up losing your wallet in the bargain. In short, be cautious and active at the same time.


Thank you! Let’s conclude with a rapid fire:

Hobbies: Reading and singing

Favourite food: Yakhni Pulao

Favourite Movie: DDLJ

Favourite Book: Kite Runner

Favourite Quote: “I wish there was a word more than ‘love’ itself to convey what I feel for you”- From Truly Madly Deeply.

Describe love in one word: Life.         


8.       And finally to conclude with, any message you would like to share with your readers?

You have one life, one chance so do what you love rather than loving what you do. God bless!

Thank you for your time, Mr. Kazi! We wish you good luck for the journey ahead.

Truly Madly Deeply by Faraaz Kazi

There are some who love and conquer…
There are some who love and forget…
… and then there is RAHUL KAPOOR!A pompous Rahul is head over heels in love with Seema, his beautiful female equivalent from the same school. After a whirlwind of innocent encounters, their teenage romance blossoms yet both of them never confess their love to each other. A series of misunderstandings and ego clashes cause them to drift apart. Rahul loses his sanity and ultimately his love. By the time he realises the magnitude of his loss, it appears to be too late. Will Rahul get back his Seema? Or will Seema never realise the depth of Rahuls feelings?

This teenage love story seeks answers to all these and more as it alternates between the past and the present and makes you wonder; do all love stories have a happy ending? Or do all love stories end, ever? TRULY, MADLY, DEEPLY promises to be an emotional saga that will captivate the readers heart and fascinate his mind and leave him pondering – Does Love Truly Conquer All Odds?

Giveaway Questions:
1. The favourite memory of your first crush?
2. How, according to you, can ego damage a relationship?

Leave your answers as a comment below or email us at [email protected] and the best three answers will take home a copy! Contest ends 25th March, Midnight ISP. Open only for residents of India.

This post was written by

Shriya Garg – who has written 185 posts on Vault of Books ||.
Reader. Writer. Dreamer. Admin.

Caffeine junkie. Book smeller. Addicted to my laptop. In love with fictional characters.

College student. Aspirant Chartered Accountant. Proud member of the Harry Potter generation.

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  • Yasmin

    1) My best memoryof my first crush-

    We were greatfriends once but hadn’t talked to each other since 2 years. Once when I waswalking up the staircase, some guys were joking with each other and one of them
    pushed the other over me. My crush who was coming down at that time, and who
    hadn’t talked to me since 2 years looked at them angrily and growled ‘Tameez
    Me’ and went away..

    I know it is notmuch, but that seemed to be my best memory of him. He is a great guy.

    2) Ego just leads to fights and pride problems and a battle to assert
    domination. Nothing good comes out of it. According to me, people who are
    generally the most insecure fight for such things. Be sure of yourself, you
    don’t need your silly ego to feel better.

  • Vijay

    Favorite memory with my first crush was in class 7th, I think. The maths class got over and she came to me and was asking a doubt. So , one of the students in the class gave her a powerful push and our foreheads clashed. It was very painful and she started crying ( we were kids you see ). I gave that guy a left and a right and knocked him down. Then, i came to her. Asked her if she was okay. She said that it is not meant good for foreheads to clash once (childhood philosophy ) and she struck her forehead against mine to make it even.

    Talking of relationships, I think both of them should be adjustable and understanding with each other. With time,both of them turn egoistic . Relationships are all about care, love, warmth and being there in your good and bad. But with that ego in mind , it is just problems. A guy and a girl in a relationship have a quarrel but the guy thinks why should i call, it was her mistake and she thinks the same.But it does’nt matter who calls. They should sit together talk about it and act like mature people. What s the use of such a relationship if one cant be there for the other?

    They should treat each other the best way with no fake feelings, should communicate regularly. And instead of taking pride on their own achievements , they should be proud that they got the other one as his/her gf/bf. They should never let the other down ever.If someone talks rude to one of them, the other should always be there. One should treat the other as his equal despite their inabilities. One should look out for the good qualities in the other and try to improve the bad ones. They should treat each day as the first day of their relationship.

    Ego is something which they don’t need and it d be better if they give it up.

  • AJ

    1. The favourite memory of your first crush? – A bit personal, but here we go. This one’s easy, as I am sure all of us
    reflect upon our first crush from time to time. My favourite memory of her are the stolen looks in class, pretending to be friends with her friends just so that I could be near her, actually finishing my homework so that I could help her with hers. Ah, the innocence of your first experience of love.

    2. How, according to you, can ego damage a relationship? Ego can be poison for a relationship. It’s not an unknown fact that to keep a relationship healthy, both have to compromise from time to time, and if ego factors in there, the relationship is doomed. In the end, one should remember what’s more important, the ego or the person. This should put things in perspective and if it doesn’t, the relationship is screwed anyway. With the right person, compromising is not a compromise.

  • Pratibha

    The favourite memory of my first crush – I still laugh when i remember that incident. It was in class 7, I did all his homework, although I was left with mine. Yes, we were school kids then! I was scolded in class next day, and he was awarded full marks! But I was happy as my aim was fulfilled, he became a very good friend.

    How can ego damage a relationship- Ego, It can ruin the whole relationship. It is because it spoils the very first terms of relationship i.e. trust and understanding. You loose the sense of both the things when U just see what U feels and what you want. The need of being “us” is suppressed wishes of one, and the relationship dies there only.

  • Rashmi Banka

    1. The favourite memory of your first crush?

    My favourite
    memory of my first crush is going to cofee shop alone with him…thinking of
    first timeout with a guy escaping parents and friends eyes still gives me

    2. How, according to you, can ego damage a relationship

    Love should be open and honest. If you cant be your trueself in
    front of your significant other, you dont love him/her and cheating yourself.
    Ego clashing is common these days but due to this false ego only we dont accept
    our mistakes and go into defending mode.

    If we stop all communication channels with those who matter to us
    most due to ego, we are spoiling relationship which may turn into lifetime

    Its better to leave ego and take action now instead of repenting
    whole life.

  • http://mysensiblescribbles.blogspot.com/ Jaasindah Mir

    The Favourite memory of my first crush:

    Well, to be honest I haven’t ever had a crush as big as the one for Amitabh Bachchan. Yes, it might sound weird but I did love him with all my heart. I loved him even before I had seen him. My aunt (God Grant Her Peace) probably was a huge fan of his when I was just 3 or so years old. And she would tell me the stories of his movies. And the name which got etched in my mind was Amitabh Bachchan. I hadn’t seen him on TV or in the movies, even if I saw him, i don’t think being a 3 year old I could recognize him. But once I grew up a little and understood what movies were, what heroes and heroines were, I still couldn’t get Amitabh Bachchan off my mind. He was my favorite actor and still remains.

    I have so many memories of this love/ crush that I can barely say which one is the most favourite. I have cherished and will cherish all of the memories for all my life. Yes, I wont probably ever see him for real, but that doesnt make my love any lesser than any one else’s crush for someone who they see everyday.

    There is a memory of making a scrapbook of his photos, about four hundred of them. There is a memory of being embarrassed and making my uncle/parents embarrassed after I would sulk for hours and make them ask the poster-wallah for an amitabh Bachchan poster (The poster-wallah would tell them ‘Amitabh Bachchan ki poster kaun leta hai ab?’) There is a memory for asking someone who would go out of the state to buy me a huge poster of him. To fight with my classmates who would sneer at him. And TO WRITE HIS NAME IN BLOOD as a sixth grader.

    The most favourite memory is the memory of the moment I was the happiest in my life. The moment I got a letter from Amitabh Bachchan himself. It was in seventh grade, a teacher called me when I was leaving for home. ‘Jasindah, you’ve got a letter,’ he said. ‘Collect it from the office.’ Once I saw it, the top of the envelop said, “Amitabh Bachchan” and the bottom said “Jalsa, Mumbai.” I was jumping with joy, literally. I yelled out of excitement out of the staff room. The teacher saw me getting mad and offered to read the letter. It was a Thank You letter for the gifts I had sent him on his birthday that year. It had his sign at the bottom. It meant the world to me.

    That will be the happiest moment in my life.

    How does ego damage a relationship:

    According to me, ego is something that would creep in to every imperfect relationship. And once it does so, the relation is no longer a mutual one in its roots. It is about ME, I and MYSELF. The three most selfish words that act as a cyanide to the relationship. To love someone is to want the happiness of the other, to care for the other, to sacrifice for the other, to self abnegating for the other, to be unhappy with the other’s happiness, to be happy in the other’s happiness. It is all about the OTHER. Once, the OTHER starts causing rifts within your mind, your relation is dead already. You can keep it on life support for some time, but eventually the life will fly out of it.

    For me, when I get married, i wont choose a person of my profession or inclinations. Because, ego is always on its prowl. If it takes over your love, it ruins you. I have seen many a successful women who are divorced. Just because of the fact because they felt with their husbands like ” I earn better than you, I am at a higher position than you at the office, I do everything for you, I am not being cared for because you want to compete’ and the like. It stands true for the men as well.

    At last I quote Ghalib:
    Mohabbat mein nahin hai farq jeene aur marne ka/
    Usi ko dekh kar jeete hain jis kafir pe dam nikle.
    Hazaron khwahishein aisi ki har khwahish pe dam nikle/
    Bahut nikle mere armaan lekin phir bhi kam nikle.
    Khuda ke waste parda na qa’abe se utha zalim/
    Kahin aisa na ho yaan bhi wahi kafir sanam nikle.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tabesh.qayoom Ta Besh Qayoom

    tabish qayoom… memory of first crush…welll….mmm..it was my first day at school n there was this guy who was extremely handsome in whatever he used to do..i always used to faint or runaway whenever i used to see him..but i had secrety started loving him…he was a class senior to mine…i guess it was 3 years after i had a crush on him,he came to know my name…in dis school of handful of children,i hardly used to show him my face ….he was by now the school captain…i had to show him some chartwork or something related to the art exhibition..so there he asked me my name n stuff n said that he wanted to be friends with me….i almost fainted..coz dis for me was a dream come true…:p MY CRUSH FALLING FOR ME…i mean who does that :p..lol…

    but the amazing thing is dat ..my crush is my boyfriend from past 5years n i could’nt help but feel being the luckiest person to have an amazing person like him in my life..;’)

    ego damaging a relationship..well according to me..when the word relationship enters ones life ,ego has to be thrown out soon as possibl coz ol ones ego does is hurt your partner n moreover hurt u…esp. when a person is looking for a long term relationship…be it any relationship..ego has to ignored… n if the eternal love thing exists , the word ego is vanished itself

  • Shuchi

    Favorite memory of my first crush.. memories actually.. all the times he used to come to my place to play with our GI Joes and Hot Wheels.
    how can ego damage a relationship? Ego can ruin a relationship. If it starts coming in the way that means you are only thinking about yourself and not ‘us’.

  • Gautam Misra

    The memory of my first crush – It’s a bit cliched, but the sweet smile of my 4th std. class teacher. In retrospect, it was so calming.
    Ego reduces co-operation, blocks understanding and devalues sacrifice, all of which are quintessential for any relationship.

  • http://the-vault.co.cc/ Shriya G

    Thank you for the responses. The thread is now closed. Winners will be contacted by email. Good luck.


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