Kalyani Chitta

an academician by pursuit, a banker by profession, a writer by passion

Sun Sign

Libra

Three things people don’t know about you?

that I wrote a ‘novel’ when I was 14, I am obsessed with numbers, I can be really unreliable at times…!

What’s your greatest fear?

that one day I will have nothing to do in life

What is your greatest achievement?

negotiating 24 years of life with near blindness

High point of your life?

The moment when I held a copy of my book ‘At University…’ in my hand and felt the satisfaction of having realised a 14-year old dream of being a published writer

Low point of your life

The day I was awarded my doctorate in Economics since I felt like I had been swimming across an entire ocean only to reach an island where I realized there was nothing at all

Which living person do you most admire?

Manish Khare-a friend, philosopher and guide

Who is your favorite fictional hero?

Edmond Dante, the protagonist of the novel ‘The Count of Monte Christo’

Who is your favorite fictional villain?

Long John Silver, Treasure Island

Who are your favorite authors?

George Orwell, O’Henry, John Keats

What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

Animal Farm (George Orwell), If God was a banker (Ravi Subramanyam), Confessions of an Economic Hitman (John Perkins) , Airborne to Chairborne (M. P. Anil Kumar), King Lear (Shakespeare)

Is there a book you love to reread?

A short story titled Cop and the Anthem by O’ Henry , Stephen Leacock’s works ‘My Financial Career’, ‘With the Photographer’

What are your 5 favorite movies of all time?

Step Mom, A Wednesday, Chillar Party, A Beautiful Mind , Koshish

One Superpower you wish you had?

To become invisible at will (it would be of greatest utility when I am in office I reckon….!)

Your epitaph would read? /Last line in your biography would be?

In order to be able to dream big in life and be able to realize your dreams you need vision, not sight ….

If you had a time machine to take you back to any country and any time period, where would you choose to be for your childhood, adolosent , adult life and silver years?

I would be happy to spend all my life in Pune

If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

I wish I could draw since my current reputation with this art form is that I cannot draw a straight line even with a scale

Which book you wish you had written ?

Can’t think of a book but I wish I could have written the following lines of Dorothy Parker “If I should labour through daylight and dark Consecrate, valorous, serious, true, Then on the world I may blazon my mark And what if I don’t and what if I do?’

When and where do you write ?

Anywhere, anytime whenever a compelling thought arises in my mind . For instance, I wrote the title poem of my book At University... while waiting for a friend at a bus-stop in the campus of the University of Pune

Silence or music?

Mostly music

Do you have a writing ritual / superstition?

Not anymore but early on in my career as a writer I used a particular ink-pen to copy my poems from rough pages to the poem notebook

What’s your guilty reading pleasure?

I somehow always have an urge to read something random before an examination

Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

Dont ever ‘decide’ to write; your best work will always come to you naturally and effortlessly

Kalyani Chitta is an academician by profession, presently associated with the Department of Economics, University of Pune as a visiting faculty for the M.A. programme in Economics and as a research associate, pursuing the PhD programme in the area of International Economics At University is her debut work as far as publication is concerned though writing has been her passion since childhood. Kalyani was diagnosed with a visual disorder at the age of nine that causes progressive loss of vision. However, this physical challenge is not reflected anywhere in the way she conducts her life, whether it's about her academics, her professional career or her attitude towards life. Her academic career is marked by brilliance and she has a number of mention-worthy achievements to her credit - the award of a National Merit Certificate by the Government of India for her outstanding performance at the HSC examination, qualification of the UGC National Eligibility Test (NET) in her very first attempt, research paper presentations at various national and international conferences - to name a few. On the professional front, she has been associated with various prestigious educational institutions in Pune as a teaching associate and is now steadily growing in stature as a researcher. She has also completed three years of training in Hindustani classical music. But Kalyani's greatest achievement is perhaps the attitude with which she has handled the nineteen years of her life with retinitis pigmentosa. Challenges never intimidate her; rather, they motivate her. Failures seldom dishearten her and the only regret she has is that she would have loved to drive a car, which she is presently unable to. In order to be able to dream (and dream big, preferably) and strive towards realizing your dream, you need vision, not sight- is a statement she has inscribed on the walls of her room and a thought she has put into practice through her exemplary grit and determination. I could write a book on Kalyani, but for the moment, all I wish to say is that Kalyani for me is 'Courage Personified'

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