Today we have Dr Ampat V. Koshy with us. A man who writes poetry on everything, in my view he lives in poetry.
Let’s meet Dr Ampat V. Koshy…
1. Tell us something about yourself.
I often start from this point that I wanted to be a musician but since I am not good at it but at writing I try to make my writing nothing but pure music.
2. What is writing to you?
Writing is something very precious to me. It’s how I survive, or deal with the world, escape, treat myself, figure things out, show my passions, have fun, express myself, make love, make peace and also try to make a significant contribution to human beings and life. I was born and brought up in a very writing and language and word centred family which prized being good at it as a kind of premium thing to do. There were lot of books and so to be accurate I read more than I wrote for many, many years. I feel this gives my writing an edge.
3. Did you always want to be a writer?
Yes but I also wanted to be a cricket player, a musician, a painter, a sculptor, make movies… I guess I wanted to be an artist and sportsman. Not that I did not like science or the humanities but the arts was the biggest draw, I guess. Or maybe it has to do with making the best of one’s opportunities and the lack of them.
4. Who is your biggest influence?
Well from historical figures, if they may be called so, Jesus and Buddha I think, but from among writers Shakespeare, Dickens, Wilde, and books the Bible and from among people my Dad and Mom. Pretty traditional, when I think of it now.
5. Your name has been printed on many books, how was your journey from your first book to the latest one?
A satisfying one, a crazy one, one filled with working like a mad man and spending sleepless nights. My first book was self published and just a kind of small pamphlet or leaflet of poems done in a local press funded by my mom and dad who were good enough or crazy enough to let me try it out. It was called FIGS. But it was in 2010 that my first book came out and then later there has just been this flood of a total of now ten or eleven more books in the last five years, as author, co-author, editor, compiler, anthologist, co-editor and it has been all hard work, dedication, persistence, sweat, tears, blood, and perseverance as well as endurance. Also endless cups of coffee and insomnia helps.
6. How is The Significant Anthology doing today?
It is doing well. The editors, writers, publisher, buyers, readers and reviewers have to be thanked along with the sponsors. We changed the face of publication in India and most of the credit goes to Reena Prasad and the contributors in Rejected Stuff like you, Anuj, not to forget the general public which gave it such a warm welcome.
7. Why did you create “Rejected Stuff,” a Facebook group even when you have the capability of not getting rejected?
Well, actually I have not faced much rejection except regarding controversial political or sexual content but I see lots of writers struggling to get a start and wanted to encourage them that they could get better and move up and out and away from being people who get rejection slips. I too still get them, it is never that I only get accepted, Many have found the group a home and moved on to better things but some also then act big which is amusing as they have not reached anywhere near where I have, but the group goes on relentlessly due to the Reuel Prize and our publications and also as other new writers come in to replace the ones who move up or on and get encouraged in their turn. We have with us great writers like Michele Baron, Santosh Bakaya, another Reuel Prize winner of Oh, Hark!fame, Joanna Sarah Koshy and in the anthology we had Don Yorty (America), Daniella Zurfluh (earlier Voicu), Aprilia Zank (Germany), Iulia Gherghei (Romania), Kinga Fabo (Hungary), Donall Dempsey (Ireland), Michael Dickel (America/Israel), Anca Mihaela (Romania), Volodymir Bilyk (Ukraine), Elizabeth Marino (Chicago), Lisa Falk Ellis (America), Joyce Yarrow (the Bronx), Marshall G Kent Jr (America), Ruma Chakravarti (Bengali) and Maurice Man God Higgs(America) to name just fourteen powerful writers who lift the anthology up easily to being one of the most significant things to happen in 2015. This is not including Reena Prasad and Michele Baron themselves.
8. Would you like to share your best poetry with us here?
I wish you would read IGNITING KEY which has twenty poems of mine in it that are surely ones I consider among my best.
It also has poems by Bina Biswas and Pramila Khadun’s Reuel Prize winning ones in it
9. What are your other interests besides writing?
Teaching is great, so is listening to music and walking. I love spending time alone and also with nature and encouraging people, helping, appreciating fine things and am interested in studying women and relationships from the point of view of being inspired by them as muses.
10. Tell us about your upcoming work.
My upcoming projects are a short story anthology which will include mainly Rejected stuff Nanowrimoers, and this year’s prize-winning novella by Sunila Kamal called Eternal Links to be edited by me and Michele Baron mainly, a collection of my own short stories and a collection of my own poems.
11. How can our readers connect with you?
The links to my books are:
http://www.amazon.com/Wrighteings-Media-Ampat-V-Koshy/dp/3844397310 (as main co-author)
http://www.cyberwit.net/publications/442 (as co-editor)
http://www.flipkart.com/art-poetry-self-styled-verbal-weaving-2013-60-pp-english/p/itmdr8dqgnn2uvnv?pid=9788172737900 (A reprint of Treatise – second version)
http://www.amazon.in/Dattanis-Plays-Dr-Bina-Biswas/dp/9382647074 (as co-editor and contributor)