ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Aditi Kelkar is a poetess, a writer, a singer, a yoga and fitness enthusiast, foodie, amateur chef and computer Engineer too. Having done a stint as a software Engineer, she went on to pursue a career in Advertising and currently works as a copywriter in the city of Mumbai. She records her everyday experiences in the city, encapsulated into short stories, which more than often lead to great friendships and relationships. A keen observer of people around her, she also enjoys capturing them through the lens of her DSLR. Living in the city and leading an independent life with a brand new career, she explored the many facets of her being and fell in love with Mumbai. Every day, the city fascinates her with the colors in the chaos, the robustness in the routine and the acceptance in the accommodation. She lives a life that boasts of rich experiences, full-bodied conversations and vibrant encounters, which find expression in her writings. Moving Mumbai is the first collection of her stories and poems to be published.
Q. Characterize yourself in one word?
Q. Please describe what the story/book is about in one sentence.
Moving Mumbai is a collection of Seriously Short Stories, a new format of short stories blended with verses of poetry which makes one ponder over everyday occurrences in the city of Mumbai.
Q. Briefly, what led up to this book? What were you writing (and getting published, if applicable) before breaking out with this book?
I was new to the city of Mumbai 2 years back when I had shifted here for completing my Post Graduation in Advertising and Marketing from Xavier Institute of Communications, Mumbai. The exploration had become with frequent local train journeys and keen observations of everyday people in their everyday lives. Everything about the city fascinated me; the speed, the lust for life and the way everything was timed around the local train timings. I had begun writing in my diary every night, about the way of life, the people and their intricacies. Over the period of more than a year, it had already grown into a breathing, alive book.
I have been a poetess from the young age of 7 and my literary journey had already started long back with poems published in newspapers as a kid and even in an international anthology a few months back. I also maintain 2 blogs, where I publish selected few short stories and poetry.
Q. What was the time frame for writing this book? Tell us an interesting detail or two, if applicable. For example, did you finish the first draft after one week?
The book, was, as I said before, alive and breathing before I knew it! I realized it later and there began my uphill task of deciding to publish my first book. I shivered at the thought, both with excitement and anxiety. But I knew I had to take the leap of faith some day. My parents were very supportive and have always encouraged me in all my endeavors.
I wasn't new to these leaps, I had taken one a few years back when I quit a stable job as a Software Engineer and jumped into the World of Advertising as a writer with no Godfather or Fairy Godmother!
Q. Looking back, what did you do right that helped you break in?
I have always believed that risks need to be individual in nature. Only then can you really own the success or the failure, whatever meets you first on the road. And I have followed this very principle of owning your decisions. I was ready to see no light at the end of the tunnel. But when I set out, all I wanted to do was get to the end of the tunnel, with or without that light. I guess, being instinctive has solved more roadblocks for me than it has created.
Q. Did you have a platform in place? On this topic, what are you doing to build a platform and gain readership?
Facebook was always my platform. I have always had a steady readership for my stories and anecdotes on the platform and it only added to the excitement of my followers, when I announced my book's launch. I am not Twitter-savvy and I am working to solve that problem. But at the same time, Facebook as a platform has helped me tremendously.
Q. Favorite novel?
This is the trickiest of questions I have always come across. Well, let me just say that I have different favorite novels in different genres.
Fountainhead by Ayn Rand is my favorite in the Philosophical fiction genre and Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach is a favorite in the Speculative fiction genre. Also, I am a lover of the Magic realism genre, my favorite writers being Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Milan Kundera. I absolutely love Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
Q. Something personal about you people may be surprised to know?
The fact that surprises most of the people is that I am a Computer Engineer and have worked in the IT industry before jumping into this alien field. I am also a cooking enthusiast, an amateur chef if I may call myself that. I love cooking for friends and family.
Q. What’s next?
I am planning a fiction novel next. It will take a few years for research, character sketching and writing, alongside my job as a Copywriter. I am very excited about this and I make it a point to write a page every day.
Q. Future of SALISMANIA.com through your eyes?
SALISMANIA.com is a wonderful venture and it is only going to grow to new heights with every book reviewed.