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“Books play a major role in making future generations feel connected to their roots”: Satya Pattanaik

Satya Pattanaik, Director, Black Eagle Books, (Dublin, Ohio) is a reputed poet and translator. The hallmark of his poetry is the usage of words in a transcendental language of the senses, steeped in a flavor that is intensely Odia. He immigrated to USA on 21st October 1998 as an Information Technology professional. While studying at Ravenshaw College, his first poem was published in Istahar magazine, October 1984 issue and first short story in Katha, September 2017 issue. He has two poetry collections (Pashanara Prema Sangeeta, Bharat Bharati 2013 and Jharka Khola Thau, Paschima Publication 2019) and two translation collections (Kshudragalpara Mrutyu O Anyanya Biswa Galpa, Paschima Publication, 2017 and Ama Nijara Mati O Anyanya Biswa Kabita, Paschima Publication, 2017) to his credit. He started an Odia journal “Pratishruti” in 2012, to propagate and promote Odia literature in USA; the last issue was subscribed to by more than 250 families in USA, creating a new readership in Odia literature.

Collaborating with like-minded friends, he founded BLACK EAGLE BOOKS on 1 April 2019 with a goal of propagating Indian literature globally and bringing out-of-print books back to business. He believes in the global presence of each literary work; he advocates on editing and translation. He has a dream – to see an Odia writer getting the Nobel award in next 10-15-20 years. He is willing to collaborate with such dreamers to make this happen. He has a goal of publishing 500 books in a span of five years. On behalf of Odisha News-Times, Ashok Palit interviewed Satya Pattanaik to know about his journey in the publishing field and his future plans to promote Odia language and literature.

As an Information Technology professional and as a poet you have earned name and fame. What was your motive for the transition into the field of publication?

Well, this is not a professional transition. For my bread and butter, I am still working in the field of IT. Indian diaspora in USA has a history spanning more than 100 years. Odias in USA have a history of over 70 years. After Y2K, immigration has been faster and now Odias have started living worldwide. In American libraries, Universities, or bookstores, you generally won’t find books by Indian authors. This has strong negative impacts – it becomes difficult to convey about the Indian culture to American people; moreover, our future generations won’t be connected to their roots easily. Books play a major role to address these concerns. Hence, propagation of Indian/Odia books is necessary. Unless we have a publication here in USA to support this work, it would be difficult.

Black Eagle is a unique name. But Black is also considered inauspicious? What would you say about this?

This name was given by my daughter after some research. The large and distinctive dark eagle of forested mountains and hills is a rare species which visits Chilika every year; she found from somewhere and suggested the name.

Since foundation of BLACK EAGLE BOOKS on 1 April 2019 how many books have been published?

We have published 128 books in Odia, Hindi, and English across all genres.

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Besides providing a platform to new authors, BLACK EAGLE BOOKS publishing house has also published some eminent writers like Mayadhar Mansingh’s Dhupa, Bhanuji Rao’s Nai Arapari, Bibhudutta Mishra’s Urbashira Chithi, Pratibha Ray’s Ketaki Bana, and Jaganath Prasad Das’s Anhika.  How could you manage to get copyright from the earlier publishers?

Black Eagle Books is a service. One of our goals is to revive all good books as many books are not available in the market. We use latest technology. The important features of Black Eagle Books are – books are available worldwide and are never out of print. For copyright, we reach out to the authors or their families. Initially, we were having difficulties to convince the authors but now things are much better and authors are ready to collaborate. We have a goal to bring all the writers into our publication (at least one book) so that the writer won’t be forgotten.

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As your publishing house is working from Dublin, USA, and publishing maximum number of books from Odisha, do you use Indian or International ISBN?

This publication is registered as a non-profit with State of Ohio, USA. We use ISBN numbers issued by USA government agency. Also, all our English books receive LCCN numbers from American library congress.

As a writer and publisher what are your future plans to promote Odia language and literature?

Well, other than regular publication, we would carry out translation projects on a continual basis. So far, we have completed few projects. We would like to help in editing services, worldwide distribution, educating writers, and promoting good literature. We will try to publish Odia literature in American journals so that Odia literature would be visible. I have a personal dream to bring a Nobel to Odia literature and would work on creating a path to achieve this. This is hard work but achievable.

 

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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