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This post is for the “International Authors Day” event hosted by the wonderful Debdatta Dasgupta Sahay

Books have always been a large part of my life. They have not only provided company when I was lonely, friendship when I was sad, but also helped me gain a quality education.

Growing up an Introvert in a world where extroverted qualities are encouraged is quite hard. Unfortunately, at the time I was growing up, introversion was often confused with “shy” and as the teachers were burdened with more than seventy kids a class, they often dismissed people who would not speak up as much and focus on those who did. So basically all I did in those primary school years was sit, do my work and in free periods take out a book and read. You would never find me without a book Enid Blyton, Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew filled my days,simply because there was nothing else to do!

It was in higher secondary (that is from eleventh grade), that I started participating in class. This again was due to my class teacher, who was also my English Teacher. The size of the class also decreased, so it was just thirty people per class. My teacher used to love to read, and we started having conversations about books outside the class. She started mentioning our conversations to other students and teachers which gave me the confidence to actually voice out my opinions out in the class.

Next came the choice of college. I wanted to pursue business administration. I had the option to join two colleges. One admitted students with written test, group discussion, and personal interview. My stint in higher secondary had given me the confidence to do all that. The other was out of the city and took admissions via panel presentations. Now for this, I was quite worried. I had made a presentation on the economic changes that happened in India post Liberalization and Privatization. It gave me nightmares. But I REALLY wanted to join this college, I wanted to live outside, just like those Enid Blyton school girls. On the last day, I was like “You know what? They said I could present on ANY topic so I might as well choose something that I am least likely to screw up. So I deleted the presentation, and made a new one…on J. K. Rowling.” The presentation was a breeze, I knew J. K. Rowling’s life details better than my own! I was obsessed with that woman. The interviewer asked questions like “How many books has she written, and how many have you read?”.I could not help but give him the “really?” look! Needless to say…I got in!

That college changed me as a person, gave me the confidence to be myself and helped me find my place in the world.

That day I learned two things:

  • I enjoyed giving presentations, especially to a larger audience.
  • Great authors have the power to shape your life.

To this day, each time I stand up to speak, I remember my first presentation and each time I am thankful for the education that I got, I have one person to thank the most, my favorite author: J. K. Rowling.

So today, on International Authors Day I want to take a moment and thank the authors. Thank you for being there. Thank you for your words that comfort us, make us laugh or sometimes even cry. But most of all, thank you for existing, without you many souls would have been lost.

I am giving away 4 books of  GO CLOWN #Achhedin for Comedy, all you need to do is comment on who is your favorite author and why. Also, leave your email ID. Only for Indian Readers. I will announce the winners on the eighteenth of July 2016.

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