Sharmishtha Basu@ Agnishatdal: Tell us something about yourself Brieuc. [Add your contact details on social media please (FB gmail etc anything you want to share with readers)!]
Brieuc Martin Onraet: A Frenchman born in Pakistan, raised in Africa, educated in the US, I now live in Mexico. I am a true cultural mongrel. I guess that is in part reflected in my blog Equinoxio: https://wordpress.com/stats/month/equinoxio21.wordpress.com
Sharmishtha Basu@ Agnishatdal: Well, we became friends after I started reading your fantastic fantasy about angels and men, a laboratory and other amazing things, what happened to that novel?
Brieuc Martin Onraet: The novel is still there. Waiting for an agent or publisher to do something about it. I have written a few other novels and short stories since. Maybe I will set 2017 as the year for a – renewed – quest to publish. 🙂
Sharmishtha Basu@ Agnishatdal: From where do you get those mind-blowing pix you post on your blog, do you travel a lot? For work or fun?
Brieuc Martin Onraet: I am a wanderer by birth: my family had been established in India since the 18th century. Mostly in Chandernagor, Bénarés, Jowrah, Gwalior. My sister and I were the last to be born in India (on the Pakistani side). Then we lived in many countries because of my father’s work (he was an airline man). By the time I was 20, I had already lived or stayed in fifteen countries. I now live in Mexico and still travel as much as I can. Hence the photos. And the fact that I can now carry my camera/smartphone in my backpocket. Makes it very easy to to take a reasonably good quality picture.
Sharmishtha basu@ Agnishatdal: Will you tell us a little about your blog? Are its contents reflections of your journey on planet earth or you have some future plans for it and are working on it?
Brieuc Martin Onraet: Originally I intended my blog to be a vehicle fro my writing. So I published a story here, and photographs there. Then I realized that Pictures get more audience than text. Such is life. So I started focusing more on photographs. And looking closely at my stats, I came up with the “Pot-Pourri” concept: ten or fifteen photographs spread across countries, topics and times. I like the diversity, you can jump from Calcutta in 1950 to San Francisco in 2016 and to Egypt in the 30’s. I think it obliges the reader to focus more on the diversity of topics. Rather than skim through. I still like to post the occasional story. I would say that one needs to renew oneself on every post to keep a blog alive. Otherwise, if you are too specialized, it becomes “too much of the same old, same old”. But then many blogs have much more following than mine. By close examination, I would say their two secrets are: 1) Diversity. Always surprise your reader with something new. 2) Frequency: The key to traffic is daily posting. Unfortunately I can’t do that. Not enough time. 🙂
Sharmishtha Basu@ Agnishatdal: Do you have any plans of publishing your works or have you already done that?
Brieuc Martin Onraet: A few years ago, I sent dozens of query letters to Literary agents in New York. For which I got dozens of standard rejection letters, or silence. It seems to me the publishing industry is dying, and their main players haven’t got a clue to what they should do. Not unusual in a dying industry. Insiders in the model cannot observe well, and the solution has to come from elsewhere, outside. Now Amazon? I do not think it is the solution because Amazon does not “distribute” or “give diffusion” to your books. As the bookshops did. Amazon just puts it up there with millions other self-published books. If you’re lucky you will sell a 100. To family and friends. For the rest? I think you get lost in the noise. I don’t know what the solution is. I don’t think Goodreads is a solution. I think someone has to invent the “E-Bookshop” of the future. A virtual bookshop where you can browse and find the book that will appeal to you. And of course make a living as an E-Bookshop, a distributor, a retailer of Amazon for instance. But Amazon will not allow it. So if anyone has an idea… Most welcome.
Agnijaat Book 9, 25she boisakh 1426, 7th May 2019
Agnishatdal Book 9, 25she boisakh 1426, 7th May 2019