Skilled programmer by day, author by night, Kanwal Kapoor is a man of many talents. He recently wrote a gripping fantasy, Legends of Prathak: The Firebird, in which the world his characters live in is facing impending doom. As our Author of the Day, Kapoor talks about magic, his inspiration and gives us some insights in what he is working on right now.
Please give us a short introduction to what Legends of Prathak: The Firebird is about.
Legends of Prathak is the name of our over arching series of which "The Firebird" is the first volume to be delivered to our readers. "The Firebird" volume illustrates the final days of Prathak. The current inhabitants of the world are restricted to life under an impassable magical barrier, the only thing protecting them from the calamitous natural and magical forces outside. However, the barrier is in danger of going down from within. As "The Firebird" volume progresses, readers will come to know the origins of the barrier and if there is any way for the inhabitants of Prathak to ever escape the barrier and survive.
The "Legends of Prathak" series itself will comprise of several "Legends" each in a different point of time in the world's history. Prathak is a world rich in history and heroes and there are many "Legends" we hope to bring to our readers.
Magic plays a central role in the book. Does your magic have certain rules and how did you go about defining them?
Magic will always be a tool in the hands of our characters. While there are a few "acts" of magic that play a central role in the plot of the books, in general, magic will play a more supporting role in the books.
As we move through the books, more details will be revealed about the different kinds of magic that exist on Prathak, each with its own set of rules and limitations.
Since magic is a tool, its rules and limitations are based on the "inventor" of the tool. In our books, this refers to the different races who have their own kind of magic. And the rules are based on how we envisioned each of the race's behavior and role in the grand scheme of the books.
What inspired you to use a barrier to keep the survivors shielded from the rest of the world?
The use of the barrier was always a central plot point for us. The first few lines I wrote when beginning the book, were about the barrier itself. As to why, it gave us a base to work on. We felt that having a barrier put up by someone long dead, be the only thing protecting the last survivors of the world adds an impending doom factor throughout the book. Without being explicitly in your face, I might add.
Have you always wanted to write a novel? Why did you choose to do so now?
I have been an avid reader, ever since I can remember. So in some manner, I have always wanted to someday tell a story of my own creation and thus, the "Legends of Prathak" were born. As to why now, things just happened to be in the right place for me to be able to write and successfully bring it to our readers. I have a supporting family and a great set of artists helping me bring my vision to life.
For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books?
I have grown to like ebooks for their convenience. However, traditional paper books will always have a special place for me. Perhaps, more so because that’s how I began my journey as a reader.
Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?
Not so much a secret, but I am a very skilled programmer, having worked on several iOS apps, even some that many of our readers might have used.
Are there any books or writers that have influenced your work?
I could never create a list such as this. As an avid reader of two decades, naming a few books or writers as having influenced my work would, in my opinion, be a huge disservice to every other book and author whose book I have read. Not every book influences you overtly, but subconsciously, I feel that each book leaves its mark, whether we realize it or not.
How long did it take you to write Legends of Prathak?
The current version of the book has been in the works for almost 2 years. However, the world of Prathak first came to life in my notes in 2010 and has always been worked on in parts since then.
What was your greatest challenge when writing this book?
I would have to say that bringing the book to its current form was a big challenge. As a very inexperienced artist myself, it was difficult to explain my vision to our artists just through words or at times stick figures. There were a few hiccups towards the beginning. But after having worked together for a while now, even this "challenge" seems trivial and each new page that the artists bring to me, amazes me with the accuracy with which my vision is put down in their illustrations.
What are you busy working on right now?
In a word, "Legends". Me and the team are hard at work in putting the finishing touches to the next book in the series. A few preview pages and pre-order details are included in the first book.
Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?
First and foremost I would ask all our readers to surely visit our Facebook page at https://fb.me/protostarstudio
We publish additional content on our page from time to time. This includes some short animations about the comic and its characters as well as our other work.
Also, if any readers want to reach out directly, I am always happy to hear from folks at my email id [email protected]