Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Lonesome When You Go Blog Tour with Saradha Koirala


Lonesome When You Go Blog Tour - Day Two
Some musical questions for Saradha Koirala

Saradha's recent YA novel, Lonesome When You Go, published by Makaro Press, is all about a teenager called Paige who plays in a band that makes it in to Rockquest, and plays in an orchestra on the side. It's a great story (which I'll review later)
and I enjoyed meeting Saradha at the Storylines Margaret Mahy Lecture and Awards Day on Sunday, where she picked up a Notable Book award for her book.


CB: Do you play bass, as your character Paige does? Did you try out the rock and classical routes?
SK: I started playing music when my dad sent me a violin for my sixth birthday. It was a half-sized violin, which was too big for tiny me, so we had to find a quarter-sized instrument to get me started on! I has lessons for many years and then when I was 14 I took up double bass. I actually got kind of good at that and passed a grade 5 practical exam. Throughout school I always played classical - in the orchestra and chamber music competitions - but in sixth form my brother asked me to play bass guitar in a rock band and... Well, it was an awesome year and the seed for Lonesome was sown! 

CB: I think you've been part of a number of bands. What were they called and how did you come up with the names? 
SK: I wish I had a better answer to this! All the bands I've played in had terrible names and I have no idea how we came up with them! Except for the high school band, which was an eleventh-hour decision as we walked around town brainstorming before our first gig.-
I'll blame the collective mood of late 90s/early 2000s for the slightly emo, faux philosophical tone to the following (incomplete) list of band names:
* Indomenio 
* Defective Chaos
* Zen Cortex
* Porn
* Tangle of Leads (actually that one's pretty good)

CB: What music did you listen to when you were writing your book? Or do you need silence to focus on your writing?
SK: I listened to a lot of the music that's discussed in the book around the time of writing, but I do prefer to write in silence. To really be able to hear Paige's voice in my head and keep that as consistent as possible, I just have to go in there and shut out all other noises.

CB: When I checked in to your Spotify playlist for Lonesome When You Go I realised that it is, of course the title of a great Bob Dylan song. I know you also write poetry and I wonder if Dylan has been an influence on your writing - in poetry and prose, as well as song writing?
SK: Dylan has definitely influenced me and I think he's a truly great poet and storyteller. I listened to him a lot in my early twenties and although no good writing from me ever came out of that time, he became a bit of a soundtrack to my inner thoughts, constant journalling and hopelessly romantic view of the world. 
I ain't no song writer, but put a guitar in my hands and I'll almost definitely belt you out a Dylan song!

CB:Any words of wisdom for teens getting involved in the music world? How to survive? How to deal with success or failure - both equally difficult I think.

SK: I see the musical world as a hugely difficult place to be successful in in the way most people would like, but I do know several people who make it work for themselves. I think like all art you need to be creating it because you absolutely love it or have a deep and desperate compulsion towards it. That way measures of success and failure are based less on external judgement and you're always striving to create, create more and create better. That's how I feel about writing, anyway. 




Stops on the blog tour still to come are:
5 April • Eirlys Hunter hookedonbooks.org.nz
6 April • Sarah Forster booksellersnz.wordpress.com
7 April • Zac McCallum mybestfriendsarebooks.com


You can get teaching notes for the book too, if you fancy teaching it at secondary school:


2 comments:

  1. I found the finely observed school life in Lonesome.. as fascinating as the music life and I enjoyed the little plot twists. A good read, which I've recommended to many friends.

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  2. I think you've been part of a number of bands. What were they called and how did you come up with the names?
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