Q&A: Avleen Aanand, Author of 'To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You'

Avleen Aanand is a young and dynamic filmmaker, writer and actor based in New Delhi. She loves to share stories she believes in. Her family and friends are always her priority. When she is not working, one can find her eating, sleeping, playing with her adorable doggo, and most importantly, “attending weddings”. She thinks that her words can bring a little change in someone’s life. To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You is her first book. Through this memoir, she invites readers to reminisce, smile and chuckle over the unfiltered stories from her life.

I chat with Avleen about her book To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You, how the book came to be, book recommendations, and much more.

Hello, Avleen! Tell us a bit about yourself!

I have completed my graduation and masters in Journalism and Mass Communication. I have been passionate about writing fiction stories and directing them myself under my production.

After finishing my masters, I received my first acting offer from a big production company for Channel V. This opportunity changed my life, but in my heart I have been a writer and filmmaker. I made a film after my show, and started freelancing and content writing. I wrote a few books as a ghost author and it gave me a sense of satisfaction. One day, I met a parent coach who hired me to write a book for her. Due to differences, that book never happened, but as I love sharing stories, I went ahead with my book and it’s here for readers to foray into.

Which authors and books were your early formative influences?

I have read many authors, starting from Charles Dickens, Rudyard Kipling, JK Rowling, Gaur Gopal Das, and the list goes on. To mention books that changed my life and influenced me to be in this field are JK Rowling’s books.

If you could only describe your book To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You in five words, what would they be?

Mindful, grateful, imperfect, loss and love.

'To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You', published by Notion Press

Now tell us a little more about the book! What can readers expect?

To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You is a book which came out of fear of losing parents, understanding what they meant when they said ‘No’, arguing with our inner selves, expecting nothing but pure love and understanding as a family, and most importantly expressing gratitude towards them for being the best. Time is running out, why not to make each moment the perfect one.

What was the moment when the idea of this book first came to be? What made you pursue it?

The seed was sown by my client. I can never forget her. Though because of differences, her project didn’t happen, but personally also I was noticing many things simultaneously, that I just wanted to share my thoughts in the form of a book. I went ahead with writing this book, and changed my perspectives about what I have seen about parenting and what I feel about parenting. The dominant factor about writing this book was my thoughts about my parents, and the fear of losing them any moment and not expressing what I feel beforehand.

What do you hope readers will take away from reading the book To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You?

No promises honestly. While writing this book, I was healing myself. I am much relaxed now as my parents will read this book. As for my readers, I am sure they will think about this, once at least, what if the next moment they won’t see their mom or dad’s name calling on their phone, what would they do or feel? Live in the moment, stop searching for perfections, and this book will make you think over this in a much lighter way.

How have you been coping with the current pandemic and what will be the new normal for you post it?

For me, the pandemic turned out be a blessing as far as publishing this book is concerned. I started this book in 2019 and finished it during the quarantine, with research and observations, along with lessons on publishing from my mentors. For us as a family, this pandemic was a big lesson. We lost one of our members but we stood like a rock. One more lesson learnt and I will never forget this in my life. The definition of new normal is very plain and simple – Live life to the fullest. No more complaints and believe in the power of God as what he has planned for you is beyond your imagination.

Lastly, are you currently reading anything and do you have any book recommendations for our readers?

An Epic Life: Ramanand Sagar: From Barsaat to Ramayan by Prem Sagar is my current read.

The book ‘To My Imperfect Parents: Thank You’ is available online and at your nearest bookstore.

From Jammu, J&K; Studied in DPS, Jammu.