Author launches 17 books in Chennai Book Fair

Chennai: Baskar Raj is not your usual resident from Kodambakkam. He grabbed the attention of thousands of visitors during the present edition of the Chennai Book Fair at YMCA, where he launched 17 books.

‘I think it is a record that 17 books were launched by the same author, by a same publisher in a single venue,’ says an elated Baskar. When Kodambakkam Talk reached out to him, he says that he has been writing from his college days.

‘Back then, I wrote poems for All India Radio,’ he recalls. ‘I even wrote short stories for publications like Maalai Malar, Dhinakaran, Dhina Thanthi, to name a few.’

Narrating an incident that changed his life, he says, ‘In the 1970s, I remember the first time my story got published in a magazine. I was very happy. A friend asked me how much I was paid and I said Rs 20. He laughed and said, writing screenplays for films can fetch me over Rs 2000. I was shocked. After this, I soon found a job as an assistant for filmmaker A Jaganathan’.

He went on to work in Tamil, Kannada, Hindi films for about 32 years, apart from penning screenplays for many Telugu movies.
Speaking about his books, Baskar narrates how he starts working on a story. ‘

I do a lot of brain-storming,’ he says, adding, ‘I don’t start writing until I figure out the beginning, the middle and the end. Also, I always write my stories with a dramatic opening.’

His stories often have quirky titles such as ‘[email protected] platform’, ‘Alakku chimney’, to name a few. ‘I write about everyday happenings that I witness,’ he states, adding, ‘I have penned about the ills of alcohols, drugs and other social taboos and conclude my stories with a brief moral.’

Baskar signs off by sharing tips for aspiring writers. ‘Creativity can come from anywhere. It is important that you write stories with a message,’ he concludes. He can be reached at 98403 22174.

Mohammed Rayaan