March 22, 2023

KITAAB

Connecting Asian writers with global readers

“I try not to focus too much on the fact that I have writer’s block.”- Andaleeb Wajid (Indian Author)

4 min read

Team Kitaab is in conversation with Indian author Andaleeb Wajid as a part of the South Asian Women Writers Feature.

Starting today, we will be featuring South Asian Women Writers on Kitaab for the whole of March. You can read the editor’s note to know more about this.

Today, we are featuring Andaleeb Wajid, an Indian author who has written forty novels in the past fourteen years. A prolific writer, she has published across genres. Her writing is poignant and powerful. The lucid language in which she writes makes her work easy to connect for readers across age groups.

Andaleeb Wajid is a hybrid author, having published 40 novels in the past 14 years. Andaleeb enjoys writing in a number of different genres such as young adult, romance, and horror.  

Andaleeb’s romance trilogy Jasmine Villa Series was published by Westland in February 2023. She has an upcoming YA horror novel with Harper Collins later in 2023. 

You can check all her books HERE.

Team Kitaab: How did writing happen to you?

Andaleeb Wajid: I’ve always been a storyteller, someone who enjoyed holding an audience captive with her words. Telling stories comes naturally to me, even when I’m relating an ordinary incident, I love to embellish it with sights and sounds, so writing was the next logical step for me. To be able to create a new world, where I was the puppetmaster, gave me great joy.

I try not to focus too much on the fact that I have writer’s block. I just work on other things until I feel ready to write.

Andaleeb wajid

Team Kitaab: If you had to introduce someone to your work/s, which books of yours would you ask them to start with?

Andaleeb Wajid: More than Just Biryani (Amaryllis, 2014)

Mirror Mirror (Penguin 2021)

Jasmine Villa Series (Westland, 2023)

Team Kitaab: Share five reads you would recommend from your region/ country.

Andaleeb Wajid:

Those Pricey Thakur Girls – Anuja Chauhan

The Englishman’s Cameo – Madhulika Liddle

Wrong – Shilpa Suraj

Salt and Saffron – Kamila Shamsie

The Maharaja’s Fake Fiancee – Alisha Kay (Apeksha Rao)

Team Kitaab: Your thoughts on Women Writing as a genre. 

Andaleeb Wajid: I don’t think it should be classified as a separate genre. After all, we don’t have men’s writing as a genre, right? I think women should be able to write whatever they want without having to fit into the narrow brackets of a genre as such. 

I think women should be able to write whatever they want without having to fit into the narrow brackets of a genre as such. 

andaleeb wajid

Team Kitaab: Please talk a bit about your publishing journey. The challenges you faced and the hurdles. Do share any person/s who helped you in your journey

Andaleeb Wajid: I wrote my first novel in 2006, several months before my second son was born. I wasn’t a very accomplished writer and it took me several rejections from publishers to finally get accepted and published in 2009. From then onwards, I’ve been writing constantly and consistently and I have focused on honing my craft, becoming a better writer, and also understanding what my audience likes about my work. 

Team Kitaab: How do you deal with Writer’s Block?

Andaleeb Wajid: I try not to focus too much on the fact that I have writer’s block. I just work on other things until I feel ready to write. I take a break from writing and enjoy reading, watching shows and movies, and spending time with my kids. Often enough, when I’m back before the computer after such a break, I feel refreshed enough to start writing. 

Disclaimer: All pictures are copyright of the author unless otherwise.