by Shobhan Bantwal
Last summer, Judith Ashley and Sarah Raplee, the two lovely and brilliant ladies who facilitate this popular blog, invited me to become a regular contributor. Since they showcase a multitude of genres, they thought my ethnic Indian fiction would be a good fit for this particular forum.
I was delighted to accept their invitation to become a genre-ista for one year. Well, my year is up this month, and it is time for me to bid RTG a fond goodbye.
It has been an honor to share the blog with so many multi-talented and dedicated writers and readers. I have had a wonderful time sharing my thoughts, ideas, advice, and most of all my books with every one of you these past few months. My sincere thanks to Judith and Sarah for offering me this rare opportunity.
Oddly, I have not been writing any new books as of late. I had never imagined that I would reach a point in my life when I actually wanted to quit writing. Nonetheless I made that eccentric decision, despite having a top-rated NYC agent and six successful books published through Kensington Publishing. I consciously opted to leave the publishing race while I was still on top of the game.
Here is the question I am asked frequently: Why was I giving it up when my books had done well in the marketplace and my editor wanted me to keep on writing, and offered me more contracts for the foreseeable future?
The answer is simple: My priorities changed. My writing career has been unusual to begin with. I more or less stumbled into creative writing at the ripe age of fifty. It began as merely a hobby, so I had never really planned on becoming a published author. It was sheer serendipity that led me to more success than I had ever dreamt of.
But after juggling two demanding careers for several years, I recently retired from both, so my travel-weary husband and I could finally spend some quality time together. We also wanted to enjoy our two young grandchildren before they got too busy with school and extracurricular activities.
Now I continue to guest blog and write an occasional article or short story, but for all practical purposes I am a happily-retired fiction writer. And enjoying every minute! Yes, there is indeed life after writing—if that is what one chooses for oneself.
Thanks again to all of you who took the time to read my monthly column during this past year.
You can reach me via my website: www.shobhanbantwal.com or my Facebook page.