Ira Trivedi, the former beauty queen, is the author of The Great Indian Love Story. She is going to Jaipur Literature Festival. We caught up with her.
Hi Ira, what’s the big deal about Jaipur lit fest? Why should we care?
The Jaipur Lit Fest is one of its kind in India - it is a great forum for the writing community as well as readers. It has become a big deal over the past few years because of the writers it attracts. It gets bigger and better every year. This year we have Salman Rushdie, Orhan Pamuk, Kiran Desai, Martin Amis, Junot Diaz (Noble, Booker, and Pulitzer Prize winners) and so many more. We should care about it because it is an intellectually charged, international forum and it is fabulous that this has been created in India. Also and most importantly it is a ton of fun, sessions in the day, and musical performances in the evening. Couldn’t get better than this!
What are you doing there?
I am launching my third book There is No Love on Wall Street, which has been 5 years in the making. I am also moderating a session with Candace Bushnell, which I am really excited about, and I am tweeting for Hindustan Times.
You are excited about meeting which authors in Jaipur?
I don’t actually get the opportunity to meet many writers on a day-to day basis. It’s such a lonely, inward profession. Literature festivals give us an opportunity to meet authors from all over the world and really get to spend some quality time together over the 5-day festival. We usually stay at the same hotels and spend all day at Diggi Palace so it creates a really good environment to hang out.
You have written a chicklit novel. Is it cool to be called a chicklit author?
It is very cool to called a chiklit author, I don’t mind it at all. Its a growing genre, which a lot of people can relate to, and, more than anything else, people get really excited about it, and that inspires me to keep on writing. Every person whom I have talked to says that Orhan Pamuk is… well, boring. What’s your take? I've never met him, but his books are great. Museum of Innocence is my favorite. Sometimes writers are introverts and they express their thoughts through their work, perhaps that is the case with him. I'll soon find out! Recently William Dalrymple, one of the organisers of Jaipur lit fest, caught himself in a spat over ‘Raj’ and ‘Racism’. What’s your view? Do you think Dalrymple, who has lived in Delhi on-and-off for 25 years, an outsider? I don’t think he is an outsider really. I think being British gives him a unique way of looking at things, and perhaps foreign readers can relate better to that view. I can’t really comment on this, but I do know that I respect his work and he has contributed to spreading the knowledge of India to the world. That’s what matters.
Where are you staying in Jaipur?
Any other plans other than rubbing shoulders with the literati in Diggi Palace? I am staying at the Taj, which I really like because it a stone’s throw away from Rambagh and the Rambagh is one of my favorite hotels. Polo season is in full swing in Jaipur, and I will definitely be catching a couple of matches.