My interview with a very awesome, amazing, wonderful teenager, upcoming author and blogger extraordinaire, Prapti Panda.
Prapti Panda is a fifteen-year-old blogger and upcoming author who lives in India. Apart from being a voracious reader and a history buff, she is also a staunch animal rights activist. There are only two things in this world that rival her love for writing – archaeology, and her parakeet. When not typing away on her laptop, you can find her hanging out with the numerous animals she has adopted over the years.
Her blog – www.praptipanda.wordpress.com
How old are you? Why and when did you start blogging?
I’m fifteen years old now, but I set up my first blog when I was eleven. I have always been obsessed with wildlife and my first blog documented my experience with animal rights activism and wildlife photography. I think I started blogging because it satisfied an innate need in me to be heard.
On your blog you interview authors. How do you go about choosing them?
I scour Amazon a lot and check out random books. You’d be surprised to see how many books are out there that have wonderful literary merit and a gripping storyline, but are sadly not in the spotlight. Hence, I fish out those books that are extraordinary and bring them to light through documenting the authors’ journeys of their creations.
You like to read the classics. Who are your favorite authors?
Oh, the list is endless! I love Hardy, the Bronte sisters, Chekov, Dostoevsky, Goethe, Dickens, Hawthorne, Wilkie Collins… But I think the authors who influenced me the most are definitely Goethe and Miguel de Cervantes. Although their books are not originally in English, I found that their words and their representation of life struck a chord within my heart.
You have an archeological thriller coming out. That’s impressive! Tell us about that.
It’s a book basically about some people who are trying to track down the lost city of El Dorado. Most people know about the Spanish conquest of South America and the conquistadors’ greed for gold, which gave rise to the myth of a city built entirely of gold existing somewhere in the Andes. After the Spaniards, the English, the French, and even the Germans sought the elusive city of gold, but perished in the act. So if one supposed for a minute that it was not a myth, wouldn’t it be interesting to know where the city might actually be?
As I’ve been studying the history of Latin America for many years and am an expert on pre-Columbian civilizations, I decided to mix history, facts, and imagination together and come out with this adventure book that will take the readers on a journey that they will never be able to forget. For updates and exclusive tidbits, you can check out this page – http://www.facebook.com/authorprapti
You won a literary prize for India. Can you tell us about that?
“Write India” was an 11-month-long writing campaign by The Times of India, one of the leading newspapers in India, involving short story writing on the basis of prompts. I’m glad to say that my story was selected as one of the winning entries, and I was graced with the title of “Write India’s Youngest Winner”.
What are your three favorite foods?
Buttered scones, enchiladas and chocolate mousse. Not in that order!
How many languages do you speak? Which are you most comfortable with?
Apart from English, I can speak Hindi, Sanskrit, Spanish, German, a little French, some Italian, and I’m also trying to learn Russian right now. I’m most comfortable with English, but my Spanish is also very good.
What are your favorite subjects in school?
Truth be told, the subjects that are not taught in school are my favourites! Still, I love my literature class and I always look forward to history lessons.
What is in the future for Prapti Panda?
Hmm… This is a tough question. First, I have to get my book completed and get it published as soon as I can. After that, my whole attention would be on my studies, as I hope to become an engineer some day. Or maybe I will change my mind and go over to archaeology as it’s one of my favourite subjects. Still, one thing’s for sure – my need for writing will never ever go away.
Thank you so much for dropping by Bank Street! It was a great pleasure. Best of luck with your future endeavors. We will be seeing great things.