We interviewed Sneha Babu. In thе world of litеraturе, fеw things arе as captivating as thе ability to crеatе storiеs that rеsonatе dееply with rеadеrs, еvoking powеrful еmotions and inspiring introspеction. Snеha Babu, a 25-yеar-old STEM major, co-foundеr of a fеminist mеdia company, and a talеntеd author, has accomplishеd just that with hеr dеbut novеl, “Magic in Errors.” Hеr uniquе journеy, fuеlеd by a passion for both sciеncе and storytеlling, has brought forth a narrativе that еxplorеs thе profound consеquеncеs of sееmingly trivial еvеnts.
Join us in this Author Interview as wе еmbark on a journеy through thе pagеs of “Magic in Errors” and divе into thе mind of an еmеrging author whosе work challеngеs us to quеstion thе world around us and find thе magic within lifе’s еrrors. Snеha Babu’s story is not just about writing; it’s about еmbracing thе еnchantmеnt of thе human еxpеriеncе.
But First, Who is Sneha Babu?
Born and raised in India, Sneha Babu is a 25 year old STEM major, co-founder of a feminist media company by day and author by night. A few years ago, she plotted the trajectory of this story during a discrete mathematics class (there was a flow chart involved). Sneha did not know it then but she had created something that would go on to heal her future self. From trying to solve the climate crisis to smashing patriarchy, her life is an endless rollercoaster of daring dreams.
Sneha Babu’s Books
- Can you tell us more about your journey from being a STEM major to becoming an author and co-founding a feminist media company? How did these experiences influence your writing?
I have been creating stories in my head for as long as I can remember. I’ve harbored a deep desire to engage in anything that moves me and live countless different lives. In my early years, I was a self-professed “nerd” who aspired to be Iron Man, and consequently, became an engineer. I decided to relocate across the globe to dedicate myself to saving the planet from climate change.
I’ve always carried within me an innate sense of responsibility to make a positive impact on the world. While it might sound somewhat idealistic with a touch of narcissistic hero complex, I genuinely believe in my capacity to effect change. And when I fail to take action, it feels as though I am betraying my life’s purpose. Regardless of the evolving nature of my chosen professions over the years, one unwavering constant has been my passion for writing.
My perception of the world has been profoundly shaped by my wildly adventurous life. But, it is through my writing that I can be my most open, honest, and vulnerable self. So, all the pain, love, and adventure I’ve encountered find their way into my written work. It is reflected in Magic in errors.
- Your novel, “Magic in Errors,” has a unique premise involving a neon-colored hair tie passing through the hands of six people. What inspired this concept, and how did you develop it during a discrete mathematics class?
It is actually a funny story. I was so bored in that classroom, feeling like an imposter in a room full of geniuses. The professor was scribbling down equations that were going to be substituted in another, which would then go on to solve a seemingly unrelated set of equations. I thought about chaos theory in kindness and the interconnectedness we share. I immediately turned my notebook around and sketched out the storyline as a flowchart in non-linear time, and that’s how Magic in Errors was born.
- Your story touches on themes like social commentary and heartbreak wrapped up in a cozy mystery. How do these themes play a role in the narrative, and what message are you hoping readers will take away from them?
The message I hope people take away from this story is about the invisible connection they share with the rest of the world. And how any action, no matter how small, will create a ripple effect in the universe. There are multiple perspectives belonging to characters that are so deeply flawed which makes their stories achingly human.
- The characters in your novel come from diverse backgrounds and walks of life. Can you share some insights into how you created and developed these characters, and what challenges they face in the story?
One of the characters was inspired by a chance encounter with a boy selling stickers on a railway platform in Chennai. I bought all his stickers, and even though I never learned his name, he unknowingly became a significant character in my book.
Each character in the story contains a piece of myself, and over time, they evolved to reflect different facets of my own experiences. Initially, the story lacked the depth of emotion it now possesses, but that changed when I went through heartbreak and grief in my own life.
I intentionally created six characters, each representing a distinct societal issue. My aim was to provoke thought and leave a lasting emotional impact on readers long after they’ve turned the last page.
- “Magic in Errors” explores the idea of how seemingly insignificant events can have a profound impact on people’s lives. Could you elaborate on this theme and its significance in your story?
A butterfly flaps its wings and a few weeks later, there is a tornado on your way. There is an overarching theme of connection in this story. Everybody’s story is unique in its pain and beauty but still somehow connected in ways we can’t begin to comprehend. To be fair, Magic in Errors is very subjective and experimental. Every reader takes away something entirely different.
- “Magic in Errors” touches on profound questions about kindness and the lessons the world can teach us. Can you elaborate on the importance of these themes in the context of your novel and your personal perspective?
My personal perspective is that lessons are all around us. It is all there. Love, connection, pain, God. You just need to look. These themes are ever-present in the underlying fabric of the narrative. I have subtly hidden them in between the lines of Magic in Errors. But again, the reader(you) just needs to be willing to look.
- The Book mentions that it shows how the Universe works in beautiful and heart-breaking ways. Could you share some examples from the book that illustrate this idea?
Heart-break is the bread and butter of every artist. I just exploit it and turn it into a masterpiece. In this story, all six characters undergo a unique form of heartbreak, whether stemming from internal struggles or societal disadvantages. As you read, you’ll encounter a love story that rekindles hope and a murder that shatters it, creating a narrative that is exquisitely brutal.
- As a co-founder of a feminist media company, how do your feminist beliefs and values influence the themes and characters in your writing, especially in “Magic in Errors”?
My feminist beliefs and values undeniably play a role in shaping the themes and characters in my writing. However, it was a challenging balance to strike. I had to set aside my personal convictions to objectively and fairly portray the characters.
In the story, there are characters with diverse backgrounds and perspectives, including a queer character and another with misogynistic tendencies. To make them authentic, I had to delve into their complexities and provide them with justifiable backstories. What sets this story apart is that there are no clear heroes; all the characters are flawed and make choices that might not align with my own values. As the author, I had to act as an observer and let the story unfold naturally.
The use of multiple points of view in the narrative might initially confuse some readers, but it was a deliberate design choice I made.
- What challenges did you face while writing “Magic in Errors,” and how did you overcome them? Were there any memorable moments during the writing process you’d like to share?
The challenges I faced while writing “Magic in Errors” were primarily external, such as managing time and finances while simultaneously running a startup and working on my book. However, the writing process itself was a natural and cathartic experience for me.
It is the people in my life and the feelings they inspire in me that shaped my writing journey. When I first wrote Magic in Errors, I was in a happy relationship, and he served as a significant source of inspiration for the romantic aspects of the book. He became my muse.
Fast forward a few years, and I met a remarkable guy. We became fast friends. He was kind and brave in a life-altering way and a hell of a lot of fun. My favorite chapter from this book is a letter to him. He is my grief and my hope.
And then just last year, I had the privilege of meeting an incredibly strong and magical woman who reminded me of my own strength when I needed it most. She is now one of the most important people in my life.
Writing, for me, is as essential as breathing. While there were external challenges, the process itself involved pouring my heart out onto a Word document—a way for me to cherish different parts of my life and honor the people who helped me along the way.
- Lastly, what do you hope readers will remember most about your debut novel, and do you have any future writing projects or plans you can tell us about?
My sincere hope is that readers remember the magic within themselves, that they view the world with a fresh perspective, and fully embrace the concept of interconnectedness.
As for future writing projects, I’m thrilled to announce that I plan to release a small collection of poems next year. It’s a project I’m incredibly excited about.
Sneha Babu, we deeply appreciate your insights and the fascinating journey you’ve shared with us. Your storytelling and unique perspective have enriched our understanding of “Magic in Errors” and your own remarkable journey.