Wary of definitions, exemplifying ‘substance’ and trying to bring the inner beauty out, Anmol Sandhu is a working software engineer, dancer, actress and an author, all rolled into one.
The debutant author released her novel, ‘Heaven in a Hell’ at Whistling Duck, Sector 26, Chandigarh. Anmol is ‘Mrs India Queen of Substance 2015’ and is competing in ‘Mrs Earth 2015’. “There can be no definition of what the Indian woman is. Women the world over are the same, but different in their own ways. If films of the 1970s and ’80s portrayed women as stereotypes, the makers had commercial reasons to do so,” says Anmol.
Inner struggles of children and young adults fascinate Anmol. Ananda, the protagonist of the novel, manoeuvres through inner turmoil and social pressure before experiencing a sense of liberation.
The novel, written in the first-person narrative, entails the growing up of the protagonist and peppers the narrative with incidents that can actually be felt by the reader. “It is not consciously autobiographical in any way but a work of fiction. Rather it is a concoction of influences I have had and the observations I have made in life nicely mixed with the story, which has been in the works for long. The group of seven friends in the book does have an autobiographical ring to it. I penned it down in book form after winning the Mrs India title,” says Anmol. An author has to be a good reader and must write often whenever the impulse strikes, Anmol shares her mantra. Preeti Shenoy is her favourite writer. ‘Heaven in a Hell’ does not cater to a particular audience but is meant to be read by all, says Anmol, who has an 8-year-old son, Mehraab. The bubbly beauty has recently finished acting in a Tamil film ‘Dhayam’, which is in the post-production phase. “I miss Chennai a lot and even my parents are surprised that I sorely miss the southern metropolis.” Human psyche engrosses Anmol and the back cover of the novel makes a wide sweep in claiming to cover ‘all the aspects of the human psyche’. “Psychological make-up of individuals and the way they coast through their social environment interests me a lot,” says the writer. On her title ‘Queen of Substance’, Anmol says, “If a woman has won a beauty pageant, it does not mean only modelling or glamour. That is a limited way to describe it. The substance is about bringing out your inner qualities.”
What would she like to do for the earth? “Environmental issues are very dear to me. Competing for Mrs Earth is just a stepping stone.”