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MTALKS with Pia Heikkila, Author of 'OPERATION LIPSTICK'

'Would you like to work as a foreign correspondent?'  
Think over, answer and there are 3 books to be won.
Cheers!   :) :) :)
Author of the Week on MTALKS-7/7 is Pia Heikkila
Operation Lipstick- Mission for Mr. Right

She is here to talk about her first book ‘Operation Lipstick – Mission for Mr Right’. The book is already creating news for the right reasons.

The backdrop of the story is set in one of the places that we do not know much about. Time to explore Afghanistan! She has been a journalist for 15 years and here she writes about a feisty, brave, heroic war journalist Anna who is out to find her right man without losing her true-self. Read on.

M talks... Congrats for the first book Pia. You have been a journalist for 15 years, what prompted you to write a book?

PiaFew years back I sat with my fellow female journos in bar somewhere in the not-so-safe Middle East. We were single back then and all involved in dating very strange, very wrong men. Collectively we thought someone should write a book about our insane lives, life on the road and how to find a decent man in war zone.I volunteered but it took me a while to work out the format. At the end of the day I didn’t really want to write an autobiography but create something accessible to most women.So I made my next posting, Kabul, the backdrop because I felt most books about Afghanistan were either the ‘serious macho war’ – kind or the ‘tugging in your heartstrings’ kind of weepies.
Ultimately I wanted to marry different genres – war writing, chick-lit and adventure and offer women readers something they haven’t seen before.

M talks... I love the title of the book ‘Operation Lipstick’. I must say it’s absolutely fashionable and eye catching. Lipstick and Women are inseparable. Tell us more about it?

Pia ..Thank you! The title came soon after I started writing it. Lot of books about Afghanistan are called ‘operation something’ and I thought it would tell the story of Anna’s adventures well.

M talks… The tagline of the book is very interesting; it says ‘ MISSION FOR MR. RIGHT’. Looks like the protagonist is on a ride to hunt for her Perfect Man. What’s the mission and in your views how can one find Mr Right?

PiaI guess every single woman is on a hunt for the right man. In Anna’s case, she had to make a real effort because of her weird world. Whilst she met plenty of men through her work, finding the right one was hard. At the same time, Anna is very determined to find her man and keeps swearing to stay off the losers.

My view? Go out there, smile and meet as many people as you can. At the end of the day, you are not going to find Mr Right sitting at home. But don’t take it too seriously, have a laugh whilst you’re at it.

M talks... Anna Sanderson is the lady to read for. Tell us more about her. Do we get to see a reflection of you in her?

PiaI guess there is a little bit of me in Anna but she is a lot crazier than me (I hope!). She can be irresponsible at times and doesn’t shy away from using her feminine charms to get what she wants – something which we all have to do at times. I think she is also vulnerable, fun loving and worries about the size of her bum – like most women!

M talks… The book is creating excitement in the market and readers are all set to lay hands on it. Tell us something that would make us grab the book almost instantly.

Pia...It’s first of its kind – a chick-lit adventure novel set in Afghanistan. It’s a roller-coaster ride, with plenty of laughs, sexy scenes and tons of excitement. It’s got the right blend of things that would make you want to go for it.. I guess it’s got enough and makes everyone happy?

M talks The story is set in Afghanistan. Not much is known about the place, what was your experience of working there and then using it for your story.

PiaI lost my heart to the country. There is something incredibly sad – but at the same time – magically beautiful about the place. The mountains, the nature and the wildness of it all. Most of all, the Afghans are incredible. You won’t find a kinder, more hospitable nation, especially considering what they have been through. Everyone has a sad story to tell in that country.

M talks… Tell us something unique about yourself. We would love to know your favorite authors. How were the writing experiences and all about the time till the hard-copy of the book was in your hands.

PiaThere are so many favorites because I read a lot.I love Nordic Noir as a genre – such as Jo Nesbo – after all I have a dark Nordic soul since I am from Finland.But I am also a heavy consumer of chick-lit and adore Jane Green, Sophie Kinsella, Marianne Keynes, Janet Evanovich and of course Helen Fielding. My all time favourite author is Graham Greene, I just love his way with words.

Writing ‘Operation Lipstick’ was a lot of fun. Journalism is always fact-based writing but creating Anna’s adventures allowed me to make stuff up and this time no-one was going to tell me off!

I could insert lot of funny thoughts that us women have about men because Anna doesn’t take herself too seriously.
I loved working with my editor Trisha Bora at Random House who is a great laugh and excellent editor, she helped to carve a book out of a messy manuscript.

Know more about the author:  VIDEO , FACEBOOK


‘Would you like to work as a foreign correspondent?’

To win the books, Please answer the question as a comment below or you may link your blog post. There is no word limit.   🙂  😉

Last Date– 30th November’12

Happy Reading!!!

🙂 🙂 🙂

16 thoughts on “MTALKS with Pia Heikkila, Author of 'OPERATION LIPSTICK'

  1. Working as a foreign correspondent sounds very exciting. What needs to be done for this??
    Operation Lipstick looks interesting… chick-lit adventure in Afghanistan!! Will check it out!

    1. Hey, U just need to answer it the way u want… U may post a blog about it and link back or drop me a comment here… 🙂

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  5. To work as a foreign correspondent is a dream I can not afford for I am a wife and a mother to teenage kids. I am tied by my roots and my upbringing which makes me prioritize my family over my aspirations. However, I would love my daughter to take up this profession which sounds exciting and adventurous.
    I am sure Pia Heikkila’s book ‘Mission Lipstick’ would give me a fair idea of the same. Thanks you ~

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  7. The contest was fun…

    Winners are Himani Agarwal and Samridhi Mittal 🙂 🙂
    Thanx for participating!!!

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