Soham Sonis lives in the vibrant city of Pune, India. He is a Physiotherapy graduate with a Post Grad in sports medicine. He loves football, and has learnt the Ukulele just to impress his friends. Soham is the founder of an innovative technique to test muscle strength. His clinic, muscle diagnostics and treatment is one of its kind.
Soham had always been interested in stories and science, which inspired him to write a medical thriller novel, The Toxic Vaccine. The story highlights the horrors that can happen if vaccine synthesis goes wrong. A vaccine is supposed to save lives, but in this story, a vaccine turns toxic.
Soham was homeschooled after sixth grade. This experience taught him that doing things differently was completely fine.
Soham also loves genetics and the biomechanics of the human body. He believes that humans are made of nothing but microbes, governing a physical being. Thus, this makes all of us surrogates of the microbial universe.
The Toxic Vaccine is his debut novel.
TBE: Can you share with us something about your latest book, “The Toxic Vaccine,” that isn’t in the blurb?
Soham Sonis: The Toxic vaccine is a medical thriller based on an alternate reality. Underneath all the thrill and suspense, the toxic vaccine is a story of people with power taking advantage of the underprivileged. The reader will learn exciting things regarding scientific experiments that I am sure they would have never heard of.
TBE: What is it exactly that drives you into writing this particular story? Are the themes about personal anxieties and nightmares of your own or is it rather the investigation into contemporary events of pandemic and preoccupations that motivates you?
Soham Sonis: The events in this story came to me during the pandemic in form of a small dream. There were so many conspiracy theories flying around during that time. Bearing that in mind, I constructed a story around an alternate reality. The questions that revolve around the theme of ‘What if’ always excite me. So a vaccine is supposed to save lives but what if it becomes toxic. That was the driving force behind writing this novel.
TBE: Your book discusses a contentious topic and has recurring themes that center on conspiracies involving those in powerful positions. Did you make a conscious decision to use your fiction in this way?
Soham Sonis: It was not a conscious decision at all. The story demanded the antagonists to be people in powerful positions. Having said that, I do feel that sometimes the general public is kept in darkness regarding some sensitive information. But no, the book was not meant to point a finger at anyone. It should be seen as a pure work of speculative fiction.
TBE: Do you believe that the current state of our health care system is experiencing a crisis?
Soham Sonis: I wouldn’t say it is in crisis. But a large shift is needed to reach the grassroots of the country. Even today people from rural parts have to travel to the cities to get quality treatment. I am not someone who should preach as I too practice physiotherapy in the city. But I feel this is a major issue that should be addressed.
TBE: What do you find to be the biggest struggle for contemporary times? What unique challenges, difficulties, or joys do you find during the lockdown?
Soham Sonis: I feel the competition in today’s world is unmatched compared to any other time in history. You have to stand on your toes and beyond to get noticed. This leads to a lot of people suffering from self-doubt and anxiety.
I was continuously working during the pandemic. The unique challenge was that no one knew when or how that period was going to end. So when patients asked me what I think about the virus and the vaccine production, I couldn’t give satisfactory answers. A small joy in that period was I had time to sit with my thoughts after a long time. This led me to embark on this creative journey.
TBE: And how did a successful Physiotherapist turn into a successful writer?
Soham Sonis: I don’t know if I am a successful writer yet. There is still a long way to go. But writing a book has been a dream since I read books like Harry potter and Sidney Sheldon’s Master of the game in my school years. These books has such a deep impact on me. I soon started writing short stories during my 10th grade. I gave them to my friends to read and they often encouraged me to write more. But during physiotherapy college and initial years of clinical practice, writing took a back seat. I was still reading but I had to give priority to my profession. The pandemic came when I was at a crossroads in life. So writing fiction was a sort of escape from real life. The writing process is beautiful and I got pleasantly lost in it.
TBE: What sort of books do you like to read in your spare time?
Soham Sonis: Well, my tastes have changed over the years. Initially, I used to read teenage mysteries, fantasy and Mythological fiction. Now, my top genre would be Mysteries, medical thrillers and Sci-fi.
TBE: What’s one thing that you learned from your research for this book that you think everyone should know?
Soham Sonis: The most shocking thing I learned was that mankind has mapped only about 20% of the ocean floor on earth. Can you believe that? There is still so much to discover in our backyard. Some creatures that live in the deep sea are beyond our imagination. There might be some secrets that might even explain our existence on earth. I have touched upon that in the book. So we have a long way to go regards to exploring our oceans.
TBE: How was your publishing experience with Leadstart?
Soham Sonis: I am grateful to Leadstart for choosing to publish my book. Being a debut author, I was anxious but they guided me every step of the way. Their professionalism is impeccable. I had a great experience working with them and hope to have a long working relationship with them.
TBE: Is there anything you are currently working on that may intrigue the interest of your readers?
Soham Sonis: I am currently working on 2 projects. One is another medical thriller novel of which I have finished the first draft. The other is a suspense thriller novella. I hope to finish its first draft in the next couple of months.