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Fantasy, feline and chowmein

What better way to celebrate Lewis Carroll’s birthday than with a discussion on fantasy writing and creating new Neverlands?

Authors Nilanjana S. Roy and Samit Basu and humorist Shovon Chowdhury took part in a session titled World Building and shared with the audience how they created their brand of fantasy and how close to reality that world is.

“All stories are based on some kind of fantasy,” said Basu, whose Turbulence deals with superheroes. “We all crave a world where there is free speech and information. That at present is the biggest fantasy…. The challenge is to sell interesting ideas.”

Laughter filled the venue as Chowdhury spoke about a fictional future where Calcutta is a part of China but there are not many great concubines and a lot of fight over Gariahat chowmein!

Roy, a self-confessed cat lover, admitted writing about cats was safer than writing about humans. “If you pushed humans out of existence, cats are much better to live with,” said the author of Wildings and Hundred Names of Darkness. “My father says that after cats, bandicoots and other animals, he is sure I will work my way up to humans sometime soon!”