Kitaab has appointed Mumbai-based writer Namrata as its new Editor with immediate effect.
Namrata is not new to Kitaab and she has been writing for the website for a while now.
She replaces Mitali Chakravarty who recently announced her departure from Kitaab to found an online journal of her own. Kitaab wishes her all the best in her new venture.
Namrata is a published author who enjoys writing stories and think pieces on travel, relationships and gender. She is a UEA alumni and has studied travel writing at the University of Sydney.
She is also an independent editor and a book reviewer. Her writings can be found on various sites and magazines like the Asian Review of Books, Contemporary South Asia Journal of King’s College-London, Mad in Asia, The Friday Times, The Scroll, Feminism in India, The Brown Orient Journal, Inkspire Journal, Moonlight Journal, The Same, Chronic Pain India and Cafe Dissensus.
Her short stories have been a part of various anthologies and has also published two short story collections of her own. She is currently working on her debut novel. She loves travelling the length and breadth of the world and enjoys capturing the magic of life in her words. She is always in pursuit of a new country and a new story. She lives in Mumbai.
By Dr Meenakshi Malhotra
What can you say about a writer who gave a voice and identity to a whole people — a group and a community whose silences are made to speak and sing in her books? A writer whose voice rang out with passion, courage and conviction to detail the sub-human conditions in which her people had lived? A trailblazer whose works depicted the toils and travails of a long suppressed people whose experiences were unrecorded in history books? A writer whose passionate courage helped her to articulate her convictions about the dehumanisation of a whole race?
Morrison was born in 1931 and grew up in a family atmosphere which provided a context for arousing a keen interest in the stories, narratives, folklore, myths and rituals of the African American community. This early interest is evident in the rich oral quality of her writings, its lyrical cadences and it’s measured and “layered polyphony’’. Later, she studied English and Classical Literature from Howard University in Washington D.C. where she acquired her BA degree. This was followed by a Masters from Cornell University in 1955.
Subsequently, she taught at Howard University for two years. She also got married to a Jamaican architect named Harold Morrison in 1958 and they had two sons, before divorcing in 1964.The next few years Morrison wrote, juggled teaching assignments and also did a twenty year stint with Random House as an Editor. This platform enabled her to identify writing talent and she was able to help many aspiring young African American writers to get published. Read more
Surrounded by the grandeur of the Himalayas in the Doon valley, it strikes me that the mountains only serve to unite with their allure of serene remoteness. People find the aloofness of mountains attractive and set about exploring and conquering them as they do the raging seas; thus, advancing the human race not just by exposure to geographic or cultural novelties but also intellectually, by challenging their own comfort zones. Words do similar things for writers. Writers get drawn out of their comfort zones to generate ideas that stimulate.
In a world connected by clouds and birds that do not accept geo-political barriers, thoughts and ideas waft from region to region, sometimes gaining local colour but always creating a sense of interconnectedness. To harness these ideas into a stream, writers need an easy access to a forum that reaches out to the rest of the world. This forum would have to be a confluence where words from writers reach out to unite, probe, create, describe and move all mankind.
It is time to recite poems of Raghuvir Sahay as they not only relate to woes of the common man but are also in sync with the socio-political reality of today.
Why are poets like Kabir, Tulsidas, Rahim, Ghalib or Faiz considered to be great? The answer to this question lies in our urge to repeatedly visit and revisit them on account of their relevance to our lives. In different everyday situations, lines from their poetry come to our mind without any effort on our part as they fit those situations so well, shed light on them and illuminate them to make us comprehend them better. At a time when the country is witnessing fundamental changes in its political, economic, social and cultural life and anti-democratic tendencies are bent upon creating a fear psychosis, Raghuvir Sahay (December 9, 1929-December 30, 1990) is one of the few modern Hindi poets whose poetry continues to resonate in one’s mind because of its ability to bring the irony of the situation and the helplessness of the ordinary citizen into sharp relief.
Besides being a front-ranking poet, Raghuvir Sahay was also the editor of news weekly Dinman which, for nearly two decades, remained the most prestigious and respected magazine in Hindi. Sachchidanand Hiranand Vatsyayan, known to the literary world as “Agyeya”, had conceptualised and launched the magazine in 1965, bringing together talents like Raghuvir Sahay, Manohar Shyam Joshi, Shrikant Verma and Sarveshwar Dayal Saxena on its staff.
In 1969, he handed over the baton to Raghuvir Sahay who had already worked as a journalist in Hindi dailies Navjeevan and Navbharat Times, and the news division of the All India Radio. Sahay edited Dinman from 1969 to 1982 with such great distinction that it was compared with Time and Newsweek.
Team Kitaab welcomes Sucharita Dutta-Asane as its new editor. She is the second independent editor to be helming Kitaab, a Singapore-based online publication.
Sucharita, who is an independent editor and award-winning writer based in Pune, joined Team Kitaab on Friday (15 Sep). She took over the mantle of Kitaab’s editorship after the previous editor Amina Sheikh moved on.
“Kitaab has a specific vision – to be a singular site for Asian writing,” said Sucharita, on joining Kitaab. “Given the easily accepted westward tilt of our literary sensitivities, it is heartening to have a site like Kitaab that facilitates the move closer home. This is immensely exciting and I’m grateful to Zafar Anjum for giving me this opportunity to explore and celebrate Asian writing through its various facets, iterations and manifestations.” Read more
US-based Mantra Roy has joined Kitaab as our first Non-fiction Editor. Mantra studied English at St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata and obtained a doctorate in English from University of South Florida.
Mantra’s earliest memories of enjoying literature go back to skipping Math lessons and digging deep into ‘story books’ in grade two. She followed her love for literature and got her PhD in English. After teaching for a while, Mantra moved onto other platforms of writing to reach winder audiences. In her Nonfiction Writing Certificate course (University of Washington, Seattle), she recognized the nuances of researched writing that is way different from academic publication. Today, between her focus on education, information literacy, and international development, Mantra reads, writes, and then reads some more. She loves to travel, paint, and enjoy good food with family and friends. She lives in Seattle with her husband.
Monica Arora, who is based in New Delhi, has joined Kitaab as Book Review Editor. A graduate of Lady Shri Ram College (University of Delhi), Arora has worked with Roli Books in the past and presently edits two bi-monthly magazines. She also edits both fiction and coffee-table books for Fingerprint Publishing, Prakash Books, besides editing fiction and non-fiction titles for Purple Folio, a literary agency as well as coffee table books for IIME, Jaipur.
“Nitpicky with a borderline OCD for tidiness, editing is but an extension of my personality,” she said when asked to describe herself. “Having dabbled in myriad genres of the written word for more than a decade, spanning fiction, non-fiction, coffee table illustrated books, brochures, newsletters, et al there is still much to be read, imbibed, researched, written, reviewed and edited. Fetishes: running at dawn, yoga and the desire to watch almost every movie within the first day of release. Pet peeves: pretentiousness in all its 50 shades…”
Tarun Tejpal steps down as Tehelka’s Editor for six months over alleged sexual assault: NDTV
Tarun Tejpal, the Editor-in-Chief of Tehelka, has stepped down for six months after being accused of sexual assault by a woman journalist who works with the weekly magazine.
A person close to the journalist rejected Tehelka’s claim that she is “satisfied with the action taken.” She alleged that the woman was subjected to “an act of grave sexual misconduct” and said she was “completely shattered and emotionally scarred.”
“The act happened continuously over a period of time…and despite the girl pleading that she is almost the age of his daughter…she pleaded ‘please don’t do this’…Her ‘no’ was not accepted…it happened once and it happened the next day,” the journalist’s confidante alleged.
What is the role of an editor in a publishing house? How much time does an editor spend on acquisition and how much on the actual editing? What’s selling right now in the market? Is Romance bigger than Crime? Are publishers still buying Vampire novels? Should you send your novel straight to an editor? How does an editor decide which book to buy and which one to reject? How does an editor acquire a book? What is the relationship between editors and agents?
Rachel Kahan, Executive Editor of William Morrow (HarperCollins), USA, answers these and many more questions in this talk (excepted from Rachel’s Masterclass on Editing). Here, she discusses the role of an editor in a contemporary commercial publishing house, especially in the context of the US and UK markets.
This talk was recorded at the Publishing Symposium@Singapore Writers Festival 2013.