Understanding Life

Capri Jalota is a graduate of IIM Ahmedabad and has worked for over 13 years in the Corporate World in India and Middle East. He has held senior leadership positions in reputed organisations like Fortis Healthcare and KIMS Group. In his last role, he was Chief Operating Officer for KIMS for their Bahrain Operations. He attributes his success to his deep passion in whatever he does. He developed a passion for writing and plunged fearlessly into it. Surprisingly though, writing is something which didn’t come naturally for him, but something which grew over him over the last few years. Then a year back, he finalised the plot of his first book. He describes this book as something which is extremely close to his heart – not just because it is his first book but because of the theme. Then the doorbell rang is all about the quandaries we face in life. Sometimes, we change ourselves, our personality, our goals to please others or in the name of peer pressure. Sometimes, we get so fixated on seeing the negatives in people that we overlook the good side in them and sometimes, we ignore our family in a zest to make it big. And what happens next – Most people often remark -We are not happy; even after achieving a lot. Here’s what Capri has to say about his writing.
1. How did the idea of writing this fiction come about?
I have been wanting to write for many years. It was one of my under-40 goal to pen atleast one novel before I turn 40. But, I could never get hold of a good plot. Then about three years back, I was sitting with a friend in his balcony in Jumeirah Lake Towers in Dubai. He randomly pointed out to a distant balcony and added “From that’s where that lady jumped!” referring to a suicide which happened earlier that year. That thought unsettled me. Women do not carried away with emotions so easily compared to men. For a woman with kids and coming from an affluent background to take this decision, it would have taken a lot. I started to weave my own hypothesis around this and soon, the plot was ready. The plot of my book has nothing in common with the lady’s story except that the novel opens up with a woman standing on the ledge of her balcony contemplating to jump. I wouldn’t reveal any more of the plot but I am sure that readers would find it interesting as well as relateable.

2. You are working in a full time job. How did you find time to write? How challenging was it
I tried my hand at writing while in the job. But, I didn’t really get into a rhythm. I think the key reason is that it was my first book. I did not know the drill. So, much of my writings turned out to be disjointed ramblings rather than a coherent story. It was then I took a call to quit my job and write full-time. It was a very difficult decision. I had to forego a handsome salary to achieve a distant dream. But I persevered. I am so proud of myself to have taken that call. Though today, I understand the process much better. Now, I could possibly write another novel while working full-time. All you have to ensure that you finish a chapter within a day or maximum two. So, timing your writing sessions is very important. It ensures consistency in your writing and thought process.

3. How long did it take you to pen this book?
The first draft took six months but it took another three months to review and edit it to its present shape and form.

4. What are some of the highlights in the book that the readers would like?
First of all, I have tried to make it a thoroughly entertaining read – have packed it up with drama, poetry, trivia, romance, etc. and also, mixed it up. So, people will experience a multitude of emotions as they flip each page. Second, I have tried to incorporate subtle messages through this book. I am a firm believer that life is too short to pursue someone else’s dreams. Once you start doing what you want to do, the world suddenly seems a better place. Further, true happiness lies in small things in life and never in big things. You might have a momentary happiness in winning a million dollars in lottery but immediately after the win, your mind would get pre-occupied in where to keep it, how to avoid tax, how to spend it, etc. On the contrary, your first kiss keeps your heart warm for days and days altogether. Lastly, it is a light yet mature read. You can finish it in two or three sittings

5. What kind of books do you personally like to read?
I read all books which are entertaining, mostly fiction. I am a huge fan of Khalid Hosseini, Jean Sasson, John Grisham, Arthur Hailey and Amish.

6. How much of your personal experiences have gone into the writing of this book?
This book is an extension of my mind. Readers would get a great insight into my thought process through this book. I have grappled with a lot of issues myself which I have portrayed through the characters in this book. However, I have refrained from including many personal incidents into this book – just a few actually. That is because I did not want to force-fit those incidents into the script. If it fits, it fits else I have used my creativity to fill the gaps. 

Book Name: Then The Doorbell Rang

Author Name: Capri Jalota

Publisher: LeadStart Publication.

MRP: Rs 349.