Today I have someone whom I can relate to and empathize with. A mother, writer, SAHM.
I am not an SAHM anymore! I wasn’t working for a bit when my son was born, but resumed work later J
Well That’s also great J
Welcome Shivangi Sharma, author of I made a booboo to my virtual teté-a-teté
Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I was born and brought up in Chandigarh, India. I studied Engineering, worked for a bit in IT, and then went on to do MBA from ISB Hyderabad – following the very logical sequence of things. After MBA I moved out of India for work, got married, and have lived in 3 different countries in last 8 years. Right now, I live in Amsterdam, with my husband and 3.5 year old son and I work as a marketing manager. In some spare moments that I get, I write, sing, dance, and practice yoga and meditation among other things.
When I read the blurb and title, I myself asked for the book to review because the title was so catchy. How did the title emerge?
Well, my husband suggested the title and it immediately clicked with me. I have also given credit for that to him in the book. I wanted it to be something that immediately associates with children, parenting, and the fact that this is a humorous, real book and not a guidebook on parenting. Therefore, it goes well with the subject of the book, as booboo means a silly mistake or a goof up. And that is what this book is about – the reality of parenting, all the mistakes I did, all the booboos I made. So I am the booboo maker in the book J
\How did you manage the time to write the book?
I used to write when I was on a career break after the birth of my son. The time he used to nap in the day or late in nights when he was sleeping, I would dedicate a few hours every day. On weekends when husband was home, I would get a little more time to write. But I was constantly thinking about the book even when not writing, so I used to scribble down on paper napkins or post its whenever a thought came rushing to my head. I had joined work before I got the publishing offer, so I did a lot of editing work on trains and flights when I was travelling for work. The passion to write this was strong that I didn’t have to force myself to make time for it. In any spare moment that I’d get, I would only write and do nothing else, even if that meant writing only two sentences on some days.
How did you manage to control your anger? I mean I have always been roaring like an ogre. :-P
Haha, well I don’t anger very easily anyway. But yes I used to get stressed, irritated and feel helpless. But if I would ever lose my calm, the guilt after that would be so huge that I would be very conscious the next time. I learnt to laugh away at everything pretty quickly, a result of which is this book. Writing was my outlet for all emotions. Parenting gives you a very important lesson that there is hardly anything in this world that is under your control. So if the baby is not sleepy when you are, what can you ever do about it? You can’t force him to sleep or to do anything else you want. Once you realize that, you just let things be as they are and don’t get perturbed by them.
Does he know that you wrote a book about him?
He does know it is ‘mama and baby’s book’ and he recognizes that wherever he sees it. He knows the name of the book too. But he doesn’t really understand the concept of me writing a book about him and his mama. The book doesn’t even have any pictures (except for some icons at the beginning of each chapter), so it hardly interests him right now!
The most important question. What is your tuty fruity’s name?
Cute name. As cute as your son.
Well, coming back to writing; what are your ambitions for your writing career?
I never want to stop writing, because that is where I truly connect with myself. My biggest dream is to write a life-changing book, one that can help millions of people and that stays with them forever. It may not happen soon, may not happen at all, but that is what I wish for. Let’s see!
So, what have you written?
Before ‘I made a booboo’, I co-wrote a travel anthology titled ‘Dutched up’ about expat living in the Netherlands. It is a collection of real life stories, and I have one in that titled ‘A love affair called Amsterdam’. The book was rated among top travel books of 2014 by the Wall Street Journal Blog. I have also written for Mother’s World, Amsterdam Mamas and Women’s Web. I now also write on my blog shivangiwrites.com.
What are you working on at the minute?
I sort of half-wrote a book a while back but couldn’t pursue it further. I started another one in the genre of romantic fiction. But I am still not sure which one to get on with further. I don’t want to write just for the heck of getting my second book out. There are millions of books coming out every day, so only when I think I have a story to tell very strongly I will take it up.
Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?
Not really. My work has been very demanding lately so I haven’t done much writing and also I am very busy promoting my current book. But when I get in the flow of writing, I generally write late nights and weekend afternoons. So I will be back to that rhythm pretty soon.
How was your publishing experience?
Easy peasy, thankfully. I went via the normal route of sending in my proposal to a few renowned publishers in India, exactly the way they had listed on their websites. Within four months of submission, I had a nod of approval. After that it took over one year for the book to come out while going through the process of editing, proofreading, cover design etc.
Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?
Please listen to Rakhi’s advice and read my book! And once you have, please let me know what you thought of it. It should interest you even if you are not a parent. But parents would definitely find a lot to relate to and laugh at.
How can readers discover more about you and you work?
Facebook: Shivangi Sharma https://www.facebook.com/imadeabooboo/
Thanks a lot Shivangi, for taking time out from your demanding, job, son and life in general. All the best for your book