Interview of Disha Walia (Monomousumi Monthly Essay Writing Contest Achievers)

Monomousumi Monthly Essay Writing Contest Achievers| Disha Walia

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Mononomosumi is an ISO certified  Edutech Platform, that brings together technology to the education sector and providing requisite support to students, writers and school administrations. It is awarded with various accolades such as “Best Education & Technology Platform — India, 2020”, Best creative Website. Shiksha Bharti Award etc. and featured in various reputed media houses. Monomousumi has been successfully conducting international writing contests for several years since May 2018 with thousands of participants nationally and internationally.

Here we are introducing interview series of the winners of different writing contests organized by us.

Please introduce yourself in brief

Disha Walia is a lifelong storyteller and writer with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a master’s degree in English. She enjoys combining her two loves, psychology and fiction, to craft a world of unforgettable stories for her readers. Currently, she has over 50 fiction and non-fiction work published in several media outlets as a writer and editor.

What are your prominent achievements?

I have graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a silver medal and have learned the skills of organization and how to stay focused on my goals. Some of my other prominent achievements include securing the third position in Monomousumi Monthly Essay Competition in October 2020, the first position in November 2020, and Editor’s Pick in April 2021. The Hunter’s Amaryllis, a short story, published on The Story Vault was selected as one of the Top 25 for their Short Story Competition 2021 and was subsequently picked as the story of the week. I have also contributed to Illinois-based Colorism Healing’s yearly anthology for two consecutive years as the Editor’s pick and joined my fellow contributors on a journey of collective truth-telling and participated as a panelist in Beyond the Bounds: 2021 MidWest Mixed Conference, United States. I also take pride in knowing that the first full-length fiction I published without a pen name, House of Cards, on the world’s first reader-powered platform, Inkitt, is being well-received for its face paced and action-packed plot and complex, morally grey characters and is considered as by the readers a “must-read”, a “page-turner”, and “well written”.

When did you participated in the monomousumi writing contest and what was your rank?

October 2020: Third November 2020: First April 2021: Editor’s Pick

What is your weakest point and how do you overcome it?

Ever since I began writing full-time in 2019, I’ve struggled to maintain a work-life balance. My day always consisted of immersing myself in writing from the moment I woke up to the moment I slept, only taking breaks for meals. This struggle especially manifested during the pandemic. I observed because of this imbalance my stress levels were at an all-time high and I had become my harshest critic to keep meeting my expectations. However, I began properly structuring my day recently and allowed myself to immerse in some of my hobbies to maintain a healthy lifestyle. This change proved to be a great boost in productivity.

Who is your idol and why?

I look up to my all-time favourite author Jane Austen. The passion she had for writing drove her to take a profession during a time when women were not well respected as an author. Her novels are filled with stories that describe the kind of daily life she experienced but the deep lessons behind them remain relevant to date. These lessons were definitely ahead of their time. And even though she died young, her impact on English Literature cannot be overstated. It is her that inspired many young women to take up writing as a profession. Jane Austen showed the world that women could write just as well as men.

Which inspires you the most why you would like to emulate them?

I look up to many people for a great number of reasons. I am always eager to learn from these people, their skills, their hardiness, and their empathy, among other things. That is how humans always learn and grow. However, I do not wish to emulate them because I believe it is necessary to keep a sense of self. Since every journey is unique to an individual, trying to surpass someone through imitation might take away one’s individuality.

What keeps you motivated in your life?

I look forward to coming up with creative ideas to create something new and complex. Since I have a passion for writing stories and novels, it comes as second nature to me to come up with new storylines and find creative ways to portray them in a way that my readers can truly understand and enjoy. Especially when storylines are tricky and complex, I have great enthusiasm to see them through the end. But of course, the best part is when my readers not only understand the story but enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it. It is their appreciation for the story or novel that I am always grateful.

Where do you see yourself after 5 years from now and what is your ultimate goal?

Five years from now, I want to see significant and steady growth in my skills as a writer. And by putting these skills to use, I want to see my work reach a wider audience and be enjoyed by readers who find the stories I put out by then to resonate with them on some level, just as they have enjoyed the stories I have put out until now. The novels I have been working on to publish, I want to see people holding its copies in their hands. I have always enjoyed storytelling, so my core goal in life is to continue doing that and I hope to see myself develop in this field.

What is there in your wish list?

I would love to explore new places with the people I love, my family and friends. I also want to find a way to give back to the community, especially work in the sphere of mental health. Hidden behind people’s smiles are struggles that they often find hard to open up about, for one reason or another. I wish to find a way to provide some comfort in whatever capacity I am capable.

What’s one thing that make you different from your peers?

I find it easy for myself to relate to other people. Even when people have a hard time expressing something to me, I tend to try my best to relate to them and understand what they are trying to express. Besides, I care as much about the bigger picture as I care about the tiny details, and it flows into all aspects of my life. This is also why I am not afraid of failing and instead see it as a way to improve.

What are your hobbies and how do you balance your profession/studies with your hobbies? 

I lean towards creative arts as a hobby, especially painting and dance. Once I graduated from high school, I took up professional dance lessons and was able to perform at many shows that helped me gain self-confidence, keep myself healthy, and meet new people. While sitting long hours to work as a writer can sometimes be physically taxing, I find dance a great hobby to maintain a healthy lifestyle. As for painting, it is not only relaxing but sometimes, I put it to use to visualize some aspects of my stories.

What are your writing tips for your peers? Do you have any advice for aspirants of writing contests?

Choose your words wisely. More does not always mean good. Also, whenever you find yourself conflicted about how to write a sentence, since there are so many ways to do so, always go for the easier way.

What would you like to do your bit for the society?

Mental health is a topic close to my heart, and I try to contribute in my way within my capacity. Utilizing my writing skills, I have written on important topics, like Colorism, leading a meaningful life, etc. that have a direct impact on mental health in the hopes of collectively contributing to raising awareness. I also try to remain mindful of whatever content I am producing, especially for my younger readers. In the future, I want to expand my contribution to more than writing and find a way to give back to the community.

Do you think participating in Monomousumi contest helped you in anyway?

Since the platform was inclusive and safe, I gained the courage to drop my pen name. Monomousumi is the first platform where I published work without the pen name I have been using since I began writing, which is why I always find it close to my heart.

How did you come across monomousumi and share your experience with this platform?

I have been writing fiction stories since I was in middle school under a penname but around 2020, I was trying to gain the courage to put my work out for a wider audience, especially in the non-fiction genre. Looking up some writing competitions to give myself the push to finally do so, I came across Monomousumi.com. I found the platform comfortable and safe to explore what I have been meaning to.

Your thought on “Essay

TOP 3 TIPS TO WRITE AN ENGAGING ESSAY Writing engaging essays is not rocket science. All you need is to keep the elements of your essay in line. While there are several tips on how to do that, you can begin with these top 3 and see an instant change in how much more engaging your essay has become. Tip 1: Choose the topic wisely: Unless there is a restriction placed upon the topic of the essay, choose the topic wisely. Not only is this step going to determine the rest of the course of your action, but a great topic helps engage your audience and makes it easy as a writer to see your work to the finish line. In case, you are wondering how to know if the topic on your mind is a great pick, a general idea is to pick something that resonates with the current trends and you have at least basic knowledge about it. Researching on such topics becomes easy, and the essay itself will turn out to be compelling to write and read! Tip 2: Statistics speak for themselves: Statistics and examples from the real world can quickly bring to life your essay and make it more engaging. This is why a great topic chosen wisely is such an important first step. Bringing in statistics and examples help an essay in three ways: first, it promotes the readers to know that as a writer you have put in the effort to gain insight into the topic you are writing about. Second, A dull subject matter can be strenuous to scan but dropping in some real-life examples are a great way to demonstrate its relevance. And finally, statistics and examples can help showcase a logical train of thoughts behind your essay. Tip 3: Aim for shorter sentences: The focus and purpose of an essay are its essences. While using flowery language can be tempting, it is better to avoid using it. The secret behind an engaging essay is to make sure your audience understands the intent behind each sentence. As George Orwell said, “Never use a long word where a short one will do”. Keep your ideas organised, your purpose clear, and deliver with short sentences. That is not to say always avoid longer sentences. Mix them up.

Write and Win: Participate in Creative writing Contest & International Essay Contest and win fabulous prizes.

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