On Being (Slightly) Famous

So the book is out, it is getting good reviews so far – a few from celebrities like Gul Panag and other Twitter-celebs (Stop the eye-roll, enough with the eye roll!), I am told the book is performing good in the sales department as well, people I don’t personally know (and therefore, haven’t blackmailed them) are writing kick-ass reviews online, people I know are recommending the book to other people they know along with a smug “I know the author, you know.” addition, I am giving author interviews for various newspapers and blogs, I am (magically) being paid better for my freelance writing, and I got a hate mail, yes. All this could only mean one thing – I am slightly famous.

I put in the ‘slightly’ here because I am not entirely, unmanageably, fashionably famous yet – no one is claiming that they ghost-wrote the book for me and threatening to sue me, obviously. So no, it hasn’t reached that level of crazy, but it has begun. And how am I taking it, you ask? Well, I’ll just say that modesty is useless if you aren’t really famous and I’m just happy I can show my modesty now, you know? Famous and fabulous, someone said to me on Twitter – what’s not to love?

Okay calm down, lovers of the good old classic literature and supporters of the serious insightful deep-very-deep books that teach you about the human condition, about the society at large and how to live your own lives, even – don’t overreact and call me self indulgent or petty. I am not showing off in any way (though I can, because this is my space after all, no?) All I’m trying to say here, is that being somewhat famous gives me certain amount of unadulterated and raw pleasure that I can’t deny. You can literally see the glow on my face.

And why not? I wrote a book. I mean, I wrote the entire thing that people are loving now. And I’m not even talking about getting published, because that isn’t as big a deal as writing the story. Really. I started a little something and saw it till the end, and it is the kind of awesome that glitters pretty, tickles your tummy and explodes into a million fireworks every time you think about it. Published or not, just writing the whole thing, writing your story the way you want to is the big thing. And I am proud as hell.

People have written to me from all parts of the country – 

  1. They love the book because they can relate to it – fellow Army Wives
  2. They love the book because it excites them about their future (also, prepares and / or scares them a bit) – Army Girlfriends and/or Army Fiancés
  3. They love the book because “Pia is sooooo you!” – Crazy friends. Also, Pia is SO not me
  4. They love the book because “Pia is the opposite of you!” – Crazy, stupid friends
  5. They love the book because it is funny and fast – good people, bless their souls
  6. They love the book because it is so different from ‘civil’ life – another batch of good people, please bless them too, God.
  7. They like the conversational and light style – people who think like me. I should probably drink with them
  8. They ROTFLed at the dialogs in the book – people, okay just one person, who writes movie screen-plays for her living and wants to do the same for my book. As if. But total feel good
  9. They love-love-loved the book and demand a sequel – Good people who think I can write another book with a hyper active kid. Haha
  10. They like the book and they wrote reviews on Flipkart and Twitter etc, and though I don’t know all of them, I want to choke-hug them and treat them to some cheesy-fries with salsa, tee hee hee
  11. They really enjoyed the book and love my delightful writing style but have problems with it anyway – actually this is the only negative feedback I got so far and don’t worry I am taking it well, I’m an Army wife after-all. The issues this person had are many, like – poor language, lack of insight and no plot. At first I wanted to defend my book, my writing, my editor and everything, but then I read the mail again and thought eh, can’t please everyone. Let them read their Ayn Rands and Poulo Cohelos, I just hope I can write something sometime in my life that they will like. But for now – eh.
  12. They loved my book but are bothered by its chic-lit label – a lot of people actually, and I have only one thing to say to them – don’t hate the book because of the genre it supposedly falls in. You either like a book or you don’t – It’s very simple like that.
  13. They LOVED my book and want it to become a TV Serial – a bunch of un-related people on the internet and though I have zero proof, I think it is my husband posting them all through various fake (and super secret) IDs. Who else can be this full of love for plain old me? Got to investigate this one.
  14. That they will love my book if they read it but they don’t read books so they are just writing to me to say congratulations. Yes, there’s a reason I am friends with people who don’t read books. 
  15. That they like the book but they can write much better so I better watch out for when they do. Okay then.
  16. That they think the book is good/fine/okay but the fact that I wrote one is great and that they didn’t even know I write – girls from my school, mainly. And a couple of clients I worked with a few years ago. What can I say, I don’t give the writer-author vibe perhaps. 
  17. That they can design the cover of my next book because this one isn’t good – two creative people I have had the pleasure of working with when I was working full time. I love the cover, but I’m tempted to see what they will come up with!
  18. That they are offended that I didn’t write about their experience in the Army – a few Army Wife friends I have. They aren’t taking my calls at the moment but they have read the book, so no complains. (They will eventually have to talk to me, they know that.)

Yeah, so now that I’m a minor celebrity of sorts (please just go with it?) can I ask you to please click on those paid links on this page on your way out? No? Okay. I was just checking, haven’t earned a thing from these paid ads anyway. Except for this one time when a random person from the US offered me 5K for putting up two links on this blog for a year. OMG how cool was that! I was a little famous back then also, I think. 

I can’t even remember how I spent that money. And that’s the thing about fame – its as fickle as money. Its good and comfortable, but if given a choice, I’d rather have the satisfaction and pride of having done something with passion.

And hey, we’re planning a book event very soon in Mumbai. Come see me there, won’t you? Details very soon. Keep reading!

Post Author: Aditi Mathur Kumar

Author. Traveller. Blogger. Talker. Eavesdropper.

9 thoughts on “On Being (Slightly) Famous

  • wordshire

    (October 16, 2013 - 10:38 am)

    Ha ha ha omg. I just love your writing style its so easy to flow with your words 🙂
    Waiting for the sequel though and I hope baby G is in it 😀

  • Anonymous

    (October 19, 2013 - 10:17 am)

    I have a problem with people who have a problem with chic – lit. The purpose of a book should be to stir thought, to enlighten, to make believe, to paint a million pictures and to teach to live, laugh, cry, learn, unlearn, relate, disgust, loathe and bring out other emotions that are otherwise hidden.

    If a book does that, it is a good book. Simple. What label they put on it is irrelevant to me.

    And what irks me the most is that these are the same people who secretly enjoy Helen Fielding, Meg Cabot and Advaita Kala in India. They are all great writers with books that make refreshing, funny and satisfying reads – so what's the problem?

    I have ordered your book and waiting for it, but I've followed your blog for some time now and I'm sure I'll like Soldier and Spice. I will be the type who will tell you You're so like Pia because I read the excerpt on Goodreads and loved it.

    All the best for this book and the next.

  • Aditi Mathur

    (October 30, 2013 - 11:11 am)

    Wondershire: Thank you thank you! 😀
    Baby G will be in it, I think. Haven't even started writing it, though :-/

  • Aditi Mathur

    (October 30, 2013 - 11:13 am)

    Anon : Thanks a lot.
    Chick-Lit label is not fair sometimes. But like you, I too have zero issues with it, its only when someone uses the term as an insult is when I get mad. Sigh.
    Did you get book? Did you read? Tell me!
    And why anon, buddy? Use an ID next time, will ya?

  • Smita

    (November 16, 2013 - 8:29 am)

    Have a look at this and tell me what category do I fall in 😀


  • Akanksha Dureja

    (July 7, 2014 - 12:13 pm)

    Wow, this is epic!!! Just bought the book from Flipkart and can't wait for it to be delivered. Review coming soon on my blog too! But, I know I would be biased and I'll love the book for the fact that I "know" the author!

    Would you be interested to do a guest post for me ? The perks being, You can talk as much about the book as you want!

  • Aditi Mathur

    (July 8, 2014 - 6:08 am)

    Smita: I love your review of my book and I have shared it repeatedly all across social media that now people are telling em to stop. I could choke hug you, you know? Thanks a damn lot. Reading it makes me happy. Thank you for the good words and the kindness. Lots of love!

  • Aditi Mathur

    (July 8, 2014 - 6:09 am)

    Akanksha Dureja : Yay! Yay! Yayyy! Happy reading!
    Tell me you adore it, okay?

    And of course I'll do anything for your blog, we are blogging buddies before anything else even began. Hugs!

  • Sandipan Ghosh

    (September 24, 2014 - 5:28 pm)

    Aditi, it is quite delightful that you could engage such a huge spectrum of people who are interested in learning more about the life of Pia! Equally interesting that its men as well who are intrigued to learn about this part of society, so chic-lit holds no relevance. My personal opinion is to always avoid such generalization of literature! Great stuff.

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