Swarupa Chavan

My life? Well, I guess I am still exploring and finding out about me! It has been an awesome journey so far. To say something about what I have experienced until now, well I am a Mumbaikar by birth and heart. Academically, I am a science graduate majoring in physics followed by an MBA in Materials & have studied Computer Technology. I am a rank holder in Packaging Technology as well. Professionally, I am a Deputy General Manager with a leading Agro Chemical Mfg. Co and lead the team handling Strategic Sourcing.
As a person, I am an ardent nature lover and enjoy spending my time in the midst of nature. I love travelling and exploring new places, experiencing the various cultures and places. Reading and writing are my passion. I feel connected with myself when I am writing.

Books

Sun Sign

I am a proud Leo!

Three things people don’t know about you?

Aha! I love cooking, especially non-veg food. I find it very creative and therapeutic too. I enjoy it thoroughly and love it more to serve it to my loved ones. It is a completely joyful activity. I also love to sing and act! Although not a professional in it, I find it quite natural in me. I am passionate about it and I would love to bring it to another level soon! I love travelling and I am a published writer, making me something of a public figure. Though I have a big friend circle and I am popular in my friend’s circle, inside I am a reserved person. I would prefer a quiet moment with myself as compared to a social party. I take my time to make a new friend or open up to people.

What’s your greatest fear?

The loss of a closed one or the fear of your loved one leaving you, leaves you vulnerable. And when you lose a loved one at a young age you are even more insecure. You experience life in a completely different perspective when you face death of your loved one. Until that moment, you believe people close to you would always be there for you, no matter what. You tend to depend on them making it difficult to imagine life without them. You make your happiness depend on external factors and other people. And then you realize you are wrong. Life and death is that reality circle which keeps going on and we get caught up in their whirlwind. I had the fear of loneliness. I would fear losing people either to death or to life, when life’s circumstances would make them leave me and move on. I overcame this fear. I have learned to be happy from within. Be my own source of immense happiness and love. I have become the love that I was seeking from the external world, or rather I discovered that I am that love!

What is your greatest achievement?

I wouldn’t call it my greatest achievement as I believe I still have a long way to go. I still have to reach that heights which I strongly believe I am capable of reaching. At the same time, I do not forget to appreciate myself of becoming a published author and a poet while working with a corporate in a leadership role. It is an achievement in itself where my job role is very demanding and technical while writing is a completely creative field. And yet, I have managed to balance the two worlds so far.

High point of your life?

I will share few of the recent high points of my life. One was when I accomplished one of my dreams of scuba diving while I was on a vacation in Andaman. It was a truly awesome experience. Something which needs to be experienced to relate to it. It makes me feel immensely happy to have experienced this thrilling and adventurous feat. And Winning the Best Sci-Fi Novel Of The Year Award for my novel THE PREDICTION is another milestone of my life! When I had embarked upon my journey as a writer, I had never imagined winning an award in this field. I had merely thought of following my passion, for myself. The award strengthens my belief that anything is possible, you just have to believe in yourself and keep doing your best.

Low point of your life

I live life to my fullest and though to an onlooker it might be an ordinary, just round the corner type of a life, I do not think I have any low points in it. Having said this, when I lost my father while I was in school was the lowest point of my life. It took immense efforts and a lot of trust on my part to restart my life and give it a positive turn.

Which living person do you most admire?

My mother! She is a continuous source of inspiration and strength to me. If it had not been for her, I wouldn’t have been where I am today. I admire her for her inanimate strength to face life in adversities and be a source of strength to her children.

Who is your favorite fictional hero?

I simply love Bertie Wooster, the main character of the novels of P.G. Wodehouse. He is charming and funny. He steals my heart with his funny antics and makes me laugh. He makes me pick up a P.G Wodehouse every single time I go to a bookstore.

Who is your favorite fictional villain?

I love Tom, the supposedly the bad guy in the Tom and Jerry series. His ingenious ways to harass Jerry are funny. His devious plans to win over Jerry in all of their adventures would never fail to make you love him even though he is a bad cat!

Who are your favorite authors?

A whole lot of them! I love the works of a lot of writers. The way they articulate, plot, present and manage to touch the heart is endearing. Just to name a few, I love the works of P.G Wodehouse, Ayn Rand, Ken Follet, Richard Bach, Robin Sharma and a lot more.

What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

Illusions by Richard Bach, Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, Fountain head by Ayn Rand, Many lives Many Masters by Dr Brain Weiss, The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Is there a book you love to reread?

I keep reading The Illusions time and again. It is not a book. It is a life diary, a reference manual for me. Whenever I have a question which life poses on me, I randomly open a page of the book and find my answer. It is simply beautiful beyond words.

What are your 5 favorite movies of all time?

Sholay, Andaaz Apna Apna, Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron, Maine Pyar Kiya, Chupke Chupke

One Superpower you wish you had?

I would love to fly! I wish I had wings, I wish I were an angel who makes dreams and wishes true! I would fly with my glittering wings and my magic wand and sparkle love and miracles in the lives of people. I believe in miracles and I believe there are angels around me too!

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

Wow!! What an awesome life Swarupa! You spread joy and love to all around you and would be deeply missed by all!

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

In my wish list I have several to-do things which I would like to achieve. One of them is to learn a dance form and learn to play a musical instrument.

Which book you wish you had written ?

A lot of them! Whenever I read a book which touches my soul, moves me deeply I wish I had written it. It resonated with me completely. All my favourite novels and their authors work fall in this category. For instance, I wish I had penned Illusions. It is deep and a true work of art. The philosophy of the author has changed my thinking and approach to life.

When and where do you write ?

I write in the night in my favourite corner. I like the coolness of the night, when the day has gently set and my mind is relaxed. There is no disturbance of the outer world and my creativity is at its best.

Silence or music?

Both at their preferred time and my mood. I love to spend some time in silence every day. I unwind at the end of the day ruminating over the events of the day, over my thoughts, how I am feeling, where I am going, what I am doing, what am I becoming… And I love to listen to music in the evening while travelling home. Listening to my favourite songs relaxes my mood.

One phrase that you use most often?

‘Thoughts become things’.

Do you have a writing ritual / superstition?

Not really. I do not believe in binding myself to any particular ritual or belief. I allow my creativity to flow freely.

What’s your guilty reading pleasure?

I had a guilty reading pleasure in the past, I would read anywhere and everywhere and anytime possible. For example, while having dinner or while travelling. I then realized I was not giving my time and attention to my family and friends during those rare spare moments. I have released myself from this guilt. I now read only in the night.

Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

Write what comes from within. Don’t try to follow the masses. Write for your passion.

Born and brought up in Mumbai, Swarupa Chavan did her schooling from Mary Immaculate Girls High School and graduated from Jai Hind College. She is a science graduate with majors in physics. She pursued Computer Programming, Packaging Technology and MBA in Materials. She currently works as Deputy General Manager with a leading Agro Chemical Manufacturing Company. Reading has been her passion since childhood. She finally decided to give wings to her dream which was writing a book. Her first novel, To Err is Human, tags her creativity on life for a young woman in Mumbai. She can be contacted at swarupa.mynovel@gmail.com

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Debashis Biswas

With more than 15 years of experience in book sales and distribution, Debashis currently oversees Leadstart’s business activities in eastern India and neighbouring countries. He has previously worked with several leading book publishers and distributors.

Walid Jalal

Walid has 7 years experience in online listing & marketing Working in SEO firm & Publishing sector. He worked in a Restaurant as a Manager in Sharjah for two years. He loves cricket & cooking.

Jayati Sarkar

Jayati has been into literature studies and has pursued her Mphil in Australian Aboriginal Poetry from the University of Calcutta. She is an avid reader and her love for books has brought her to the field of Publishing. For years she has explored the other side of the book as a reader and now she works with Leadstart as the Senior Executive in the Editorial Department. Her work profile includes working closely with Authors, managing the projects from end to end and also working with national and international publishers for management of Secondary Rights.

Ashwini Jadhav

Ashwini has about a decade’s experience in design. She is a Master of Commercial Art, who has worked in the publishing and advertising sectors as a visualiser & designer. She was judged as the third best in the state, when she finished her foundation course in applied art. She is a practicing calligrapher in Modi Lipi (a script in the Marathi language) and is a Rangoli artist who has won several accolades in those domains. During the popular Ganesh Chaturthi festival, several idols of Ganesha in varying sizes get made, one the most important finishing touches to the idol is that of painting the eyes, which Ashwini has practiced to perfection and does it for hundreds of idols every year. In addition to the above, she is also a trained classical dancer, a national level Kabaddi player and loves cooking.

Ananya Subramanian

Graduation in journalism and love for books, led Ananya to take up a career in publishing. With her experience in the field, she has come to believe more and more in the power of stories and the people who tell them. She is a vegan and an animal-lover; and loves to dance, tend to her pet plants and often find solace in solo travelling.

T. Vijay Kumar

Vijay has over a decade’s experience in supply chain management working in India and the Middle East. He heads the production, supply chain and receivables management for Leadstart. Prior to his current role at Leadstart, Vijay worked in inventory management for five years, in Abu Dhabi.

Iftikar Shaikh

Iftikar has a decade & half years of experience across publishing and the banking sectors in the finance domain. He enjoys working on numbers and loves uncovering stories that the numbers tell. A fitness enthusiast, he loves trekking and travelling.

Maneesha Arun

Maneesha has an experience of over two decades in the content industry spanning over publishing, media and secondary rights business domains. She has a deep interest in psychology.

Mahendra Rawat

With more than a decade’s experience in book sales and distribution, Mahendra comes from a family immersed in the book trade. He worked with several book distributors and publishers before his current assignment with Leadstart.

RAJESH KRISHNAN

With more than 15 years of experience in book sales and distribution, Debashis currently oversees Leadstart’s business activities in eastern India and neighbouring countries. He has previously worked with several leading book publishers and distributors.

Rajesh Krishnan

Rajesh comes with over 3 decades of experience spread over various business domains. He oversees Leadstart’s business development & sales across southern & western India, Sri Lanka and Middle-East. His hobbies include dancing, trekking and travelling

Pooja Dutt

Pooja has over a decade’s experience in operations, sales and people management in various business domains. She loves to interact with authors and helps them meet their publishing goals. She is fond of travelling & cooking.

Bhavika Bharambe

After completing her MBA in marketing, Bhavika has focused on roles that helped her to become an experienced marketing professional today. She has worked for brands from various industries; Educational, Tourism, Retail, Entertainment, Airlines, Banking and more. She loves to spend her time by reading books and listening to music.

Naina Solanki

Naina leads the project management and author support functions at Leadstart Publishing. She is fond of being abreast of the latest developments in technology and is a keen learner of the six sigma methodology. She loves reading and travelling.

Preeti Chib

Preeti has a decade’s experience in brand and communication management with most influential and innovative media companies. She is passionate about building brands by translating consumer insights into product innovations and campaigns. She is a compulsive reader and considers a day gone without some bit of reading a day wasted. She loves reading stories to her children every night. A lover of visual art, to delve a bit deeper into the same, she took up formal training for design as well.

Malini Nair

Malini is passionate about Literature and Business Management. After her MBA (Marketing) from St. Xavier’s, she took up roles that involved sales, marketing, costing, MIS etc. in multiple sectors like Banking, Insurance, E-broking, and even the Steel industry. Eventually, her passion for languages and books compelled her to re-route her career to literature. This led to a career break and a Masters Degree in English Literature; post which she took up a role at Wordit CDE & Leadstart, enabling her to work towards both her passions.

Chandralekha Maitra

With two decades of experience as a book publishing professional, Chandralekha began her career as a features writer and columnist, working with publications across India, before moving into book publishing full time, with India Book House. She received her training in editorial title management from Book House, London. Over the years she has worked with some of the finest publishing houses in India and overseas, and across genres and markets. She has also worked with Osian’s-Connoisseurs of Art, India’s first auction house, gaining in-depth exposure to research and publishing in the fine arts-antiquities-cultural heritage genres. Additionally she has had a parallel, specialist career in Human Resources, working at Group HR, Tata Group, among others. She continues to write, train and mentor in this domain as her publishing commitments allow.

Raj Supe

Aka Kinkar Vishwashreyananda, Raj Supe is a poet, storyteller and novelist, as well as a seeker and devotee of Sri Sitaramdas Omkarnath. An MBA by education, his career spanned advertising, research and creative consulting, before devoting his time to literature and spirituality. His works include Three No Trumps (novel), Sagarika Anusagarika [Echoes of Nine Rivers] (poetry), Pilgrim of the Sky (spiritual memoir), and translations of religious texts such as Cloudburst of A Thousand Suns and Jai Jai Ram Krishna Hari. He has also worked on film scripts with Ram Gopal Verma and Ashutosh Gowariker, and on plays with Makarand Deshpande.

Dr. Rabindra Kumar Nanda

An alumnus of IIT Kanpur, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research and Stanford University, Dr Nanda is also a National Science Talent Search Scholar. He holds five Patents and is a published author of 50 national and 52 international research papers.

Swarup Nanda

Swarup has over a decade and half’s experience in multiple business domains related to content. Prior to his entrepreneurial ventures, he has worked with a couple of MNCs in the media space. His passion for literature and books is his motivation for building Leadstart.