In conversation with the author of the magnificient Kalki Trilogy – Kevin Missal.

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About the Author

Kevin Missal is a twenty-two year old graduate of St. Stephen’s College. He has previously released the first book of the Kalki Trilogy, Dharmayoddha Kalki: Avatar of Vishnu, which became a National best-seller and received praise from newspapers such as Millennium Post and Sunday Guardian who have termed it as “2017’s mythological phenomenon”. Kevin loves reading, watching films, and building stories in his mind. He lives in New Delhi.

 

 

 

1) Kalki seems to be an extensive book which focuses so much on their characters too. What was your thought process to build them up? 
It was about creating enough conflicts, enough pain in their lives that was tough for me. I thought about a character and wondered what was the worst thing I can do to them and then I do it.
We all think Kalki will win in book 1 and he loses and that’s what makes it interesting. Every other book would have shown him as this undefeated hero but I chose to show him weak who’ll grow strong.

Continue reading “In conversation with the author of the magnificient Kalki Trilogy – Kevin Missal.”

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In conversation with Amit Joshi Author of freelance training.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR –

Amit Joshi is a successful trainer with 13+ years of experience in Language and Soft Skills Training, Profit Centre Operations, and Accounts Management, who has coached clients from various industries through diverse trainings.

 

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1) Tell us a little about yourself and how your journey has been through as a freelance trainer?

I am a Corporate trainer for Behavioral and Leadership skills. I have trained over 3000 participants from more than 40 leading MNCs and the author of the book – Freelance training- How to crack the Freelance Training business in India. I am also a trained trainer from The British council and Instructional design from TISS. I have recently started my own company for Corporate training.

My journey as a Freelance trainer has been very exciting, learning and growing every day. The initial days were quite difficult, as I tried to acquire new clients and get training assignments. However after the first year, have been growing consistently thus making the journey very fulfilling and rewarding.

 

2) Why did you choose this topic?

When I first made a switch from a full time job to freelance training, back in 2013, there was no visibility in the market on how one can navigate in the arena of Freelance training. I had to make my way through trial and error. Later on, when I got reasonably established as a Trainer, I thought of sharing my learning with aspiring trainers and that’s when I thought of writing my book.

 

3) Does this book have any personal incidents?

Yes, the book has several personal incidents and experiences. I added them to give the readers a vivid perspective of the Freelance training profession.

 

4) As this book is about freelancing. How many freelancing jobs did you do?some incident ( could be funny/ motivational)that really left an impact over you?

As mentioned earlier, as a Freelance trainer, I have trained more than 3000 participants from over 40 leading companies. One incident which is quite memorable happened during my initial days as a Freelancer. I got called for an interview for a training assignment as a voice coach for a BPO. It was actually a teach-back, i.e. a demo training session. That was my first interview as a trainer and I was fairly confident about my knowledge and training ability, However when the demo started, the panel started asking questions about English grammar and some technical details about Voice and accent training. I was totally stumped by some of the questions and my hands were literally trembling. I was rejected as expected however, once I came home, I did extensive research on the internet and watched several videos on Youtube related to the topic and later on I did quite well in the other interviews on that subject. That was a great learning experience for me and will remember it for a long time to come.

 

5) Who are your role models?

Some of my role models are Tony Buzan, Anthony Robbins, Stephen Covey, Malcolm Gladwell and Chetan Bhagat

 

6) Your favourite authors? What do you really love about them?

there are a few favourite authors mostly from the Non-fiction books domain. I am thoroughly impressed by Malcolm Gladwell, Ram Charan, Robert Kiyosaki and Robin Sharma.
All of their writings are based on in depth research, succinct writing with a lot of valuable tips to implement the learnings from their writing. I strongly recommend reading their books to whoever is interested in Non-fiction self help, Management and Leadership related books.

 

7) Can you give a little brief about the book and what it means to you and giving out a part of what you do out to so many people?

Before I give information about my book, I would like to set some context. There is an immense scope for Training in India because of the skill gap between the Industry requirements and the skills provided by our educational institutes. There is also an immense need for training the existing workforce to meet the challenges faced by modern day organisations. A lot of companies are now realising this and have increased their focus on Learning and development. The training industry is quite nascent in the country and needs to evolve at a rapid pace to meet this challenge. Companies either have a dedicated training team to up-skill their workforce or tie up with Training partners to achieve this. Thus there is a growing need for trainers specialising in a wide array of subject areas and skills to keep up with the requirements. This need is being addressed either by full time training professionals or through Contract/Freelance Trainers.

Although there is a huge number of Freelance trainers who are either established or aspiring, there is very less visibility in terms of how one navigates his or her way in the Indian Freelance Training business.

About the book:

My book “How to crack the Freelance Training Market in India” aims to address this very challenge.It is the definitive guide for people wanting to make freelance training their career with the knowledge, skills and tips to tap into and sustain in the market. The books contains –

  • A step by step guide to help trainers in their journey in the Freelance Training market
  • Practical tips and insights based on first-hand experience
  • Tools to help them implement and carry on the learning from the book
  • Guidance from the Top trainers in India
  • Ways to get an edge over your competitors in the Training arena
  • Leverage the ideas to add an additional income source along with their regular job

 

8) As most of the millennials like us are confused with what to do in life what do you think that Freelancing will turn out to be the major developing field in the future times?  Will this book guide us with the whole process?

Full time corporate jobs are becoming extremely dynamic and stressful day by day. No job or industry promises a long term safe secure career. The key is to constantly learn, unlearn and grow. Also, the current generation is very ambitious and not afraid to explore novel paths. Owing to these reasons, Freelancing will surely be a viable option and will grow in several fields. My book specifically deals with Freelance training profession however it can also provide some general guidance for freelancing overall.

9)Since how long were you articulating this book?

It took me about 6 months to write my book.

10)  If it could be rewritten which author would you like it to rewrite?

I would like it to be written by some popular author like Chetan Bhagat so that it can reach out to a vast audience.

 

 

11) How did you start writing?

I started writing almost 8 years ago when I used to occasionally write articles, however started writing seriously just a couple of years ago when I wrote my book.

 

12) What does writing mean to you?

Writing is a means for expressing and gaining clarity for my own ideas. I also view it as a way to help other people. Personally, it can help to establish a brand for myself and establish my credentials.

 

13) Did any special research/ incident happen in putting up this book?

The book is based mostly on my first- hand experience in the Freelance training world and I believe that would add a lot of value for the readers who are considering this career option.

 

14) Any future publications/ previous publications?

In the future I am planning to write books on alternative careers for today’s youth and about learning styles and preferences of children.

16)  what is your usual process in writing?

Do you write in a stretch or throughout in between chores?

Given my schedule, it is difficult to set a fixed time regularly for writing. I find time to write, in chunks i.e. some days I get more time whereas there are days when I do not get time at all. However I make sure that my mind is always working on the concept/subject I want to write on. I then break it into smaller tasks, starting with the broad outline, sub topics in the beginning. Once the flow and the outline are clear, it becomes easy to elaborate on them when I get some more time. This is how I managed to write my book.

17)How do you get rid of writer’s block?

Haven’t really experienced a block so don’t know how to overcome it. The only challenge I face is to manage time.

Based on a tip from another author, one thing I can suggest for Non-fiction writers is to get ideas about questions people might have related to the subject from Quora. Once you know what questions people are asking, you can guide your thoughts towards answering them.

18)  What troubles did you face during publishing the book. What changes do you want out in the whole process?

Since I had no knowledge about the publishing world earlier, I had to do a lot of searching on the internet to find out the publishers and know who would be interested in publishing my work. Once identified, the other challenge was to pitch for the book by sending the proposal in their formats and convincing them about the potential of my book.

 

19) Some writing tips for our writers/bloggers/ freelancers?

Read like there is no tomorrow and be hungry to learn new things. If you follow these tips, writing will come automatically.

 

20) Something for our readers?

Read like there is no tomorrow.

 

buy the book here.

Jukebox- By various authors.

BLURB –

A Short Story Collection Based On The Stellar Works Of Budding Writers In India

A story you wish was NEVER narrated to an eight-year-old. Old letters of a dead father, what secrets could they hold for a long lost daughter? A chilly December morning and a lone gravestone – changed the day and someone’s life. A seemingly ‘ideal marriage’ in an old city smelling of love. An aging alcoholic superstar finding a magical cure for his incurable baldness. From middle-class Government quarter to a posh Neeti Bagh bungalow, was there a price for this!

Life would have been very different for the characters in these stories, but for the choices they make. Read these stories to know what they did with their choice. You many see a reflection of yourself. Spine chilling drama and suspense, quirky, funny and awkward moments, poetic love of hopeless romantics and a lot more is packed in the pages of this collection.

 

REVIEW –

Cover – the cover is simple yet speaking alot about how the book is made up from different writers amalgamated into one book and has a variety.

title – jukebox depicting the songs that one can listen to. The variety and the uniqueness.

The book is a collection of gut kicking stories written down by various writers around the country. Each story has a different tale to speak of and to enfold a new societal norm. The orthodox, the human thinking. all the stories keep you hooked throughout the book. Alot of various issues have been discussed in the book. A short but really amazing read for those who love stories. The stories will leave you in awe. The book consists of dark secrets that will definitely give you goosbeumps, make you cry and will give you alot to think about. The foreword has been written by Preeti shenoy.
The book will help you learn new words as well. Editing and other aspects of the book have been taken real good care. A must read collection of stories!
Overall -4/5.

Shaheen Must Die: A Thrilling Military Love Story set in Exotic Kashmir- By Captain Rakesh Walia.

Shaheen Must Die by Captain Rakesh Walia
Cover – the cover tells you about a tale of soldier and wars.

Title – about wars.

Characters – captain Rakesh walia is the protagonist,his son- mohit, Arijit and shaheen. Characterization has been done well.

Pace – the story moves in on a medium pace.

Themes – war,love for the nation, family bond.

The book revolves around how one should never give up. There are instances in the book that will make you teary eyed between the father and the son. Emotional ups and downs given in the story really adds to the beauty of the plot. language is easy to understand. The book feels like a thriller movie happening in front of you.
War incidents have also been put up in the story which adds up to it.
This being the second book by the author alot of improvement can be seen. The book is a short read.
overall -4/5

The Surrogate Lies – by Shantanu Munshi

 

 

BLURB –

A dysfunctional writer, a hyperbole consultant, a Bollywood smitten driver and an over the top mysterious foreign man. They are strangers on an adventure and strange is their adventure. Their escapades are as serendipitous as life on earth yet their lives are as normal as a morning tea. Still you will laugh, cry, sympathise with them en route to their and yours redemption from the mundane life. Read as they dodge the bullets of their fear, their insecurities and their failures. They are waiting for you to board the rusted and trusted 4*4 and enjoy the smooth rollercoaster. So all aboard? Get started and turn the first page of this special journey of this nondescript motley of strangers.

 

REVIEW –

The title is different and interesting. The cover is really simple which could have been better. The book is divided into three sections of the trip. The plot is based on four different personality people travelling. Alot can be learnt from this story. The story is humour filled. The four main characters are – A Writer , Paul ; a Driver , Raj ; a Stranger , Hazare and a Mysterious foreigner -Ben. The book will take you on a humpur ride. The story does not lead you down at all. The story keeps flowing.It keeps you hooked at all times. The story is something different and rejuvenating. If you are looking for something unique one should definitely read this book. You will enjoy reading it and also learn somethings through this journey. Will definitely like to see what the author has in the future.

overall-4/5

I Shouldn’t Have Died Like This – by Ashutosh Srivastava

 

 

BLURB –

Dreams… We thank God, after we wake up from a nightmare. And we are also the one, who curse God after we wake up from a dream in which we had all the luxuries of the world, or in which we had achieved what we really wanted to. Smile or grief comes to us, when we wake up from the dream, but when we are asleep, we live in the dream, as we are… Dreams take us to a land filled with imagination; imagination which is by our conscious and subconscious mind. Name, Fame, Money, Honey… that’s it. That’s all we want! Isn’t it? What if you die in your dream? What if you didn’t go to hell or to heaven, because when your deeds got tallied, you didn’t fit in, for any of them? What if you attain enlightment in your dream? What then? Nothing! It will also come to an end, just like every other dream does; leaving you behind with just a story… a story, which can teach you something..

 

REVIEW –

The cover is a bit trippy. Showing adventures and misadventures. The blurb is crisp doesn’t give away the story. The title goes along well. The story revolves from the perspective of the person who is dead due to unfortunate events and is living in the afterlife somewhere between dreams. What you will really enjoy is the imagination, naming of the objects (likw ru, shrota) and how different it is than the other usual stories one reads. The language is simple and easy to underdstand. how he meets different people there. What if everything is a dream, what if we could change everything. Language is easy to understand. Plot is something with a really unique twist and has a sequel as well. Really amazing work.

overall -3.5/5.

Keeping up with Kaneda – by Gaurav Kumar

 

 

 

BLURB –

Canada – the land of beautiful lakes, opportunities and umm… scores of desis (aren’t we just everywhere?). What happens when a young man gets a one-way ticket to the hallowed country? When you’re saat samundar paar, even a modest course at a community college becomes a gateway for merriment and learning… of a totally different kind. And so it did, with Gaurav. An Australian flatmate, fellow students from Nigeria and Bangladesh and an employer from Kazakhstan lead him on a journey of epic escapades and much self-discovery. And when you’re looking to earn some pocket money, odd jobs just have to do. From a curious DJing gig that turns out slightly different than expected to becoming a walking salesman clad in a sandwich board, there’s no dearth of drama. Jump right in, for Keeping Up With Kaneda is an adventure in itself.

 

REVIEW –

Starting off with the cover it is really colourful, vibrant and full of life. The title is really funny and apt just in the ways punjabis call canada. The blurb just tells a little about the book.This book is really an amazing read during coffee or travelling. How gaurav has trouble being called properly by his name and all the jobs he had to survive through to become who he is now. The novel is a light read which will definitely cheer you throughout the each chapter which brings in a new person/job in his life. How everyday is an adventure for gaurav in canada ranging from food-friends-job and everyday drama. The book is really witty and full of humour. Provides you with a fresh perspective of an Indian in a foriegn land. This book really keeps you hooked and by the time you realize it is already over. This book feels like a journey.  It feels like the author is along with you and all of the fun is happening right in front of you. The pace gets a little slow in the end. would definitely read this author again.

overall – 4/5