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What being a 'celebrity' feels like: a candid confession from Preeti Shenoy



At Abu Dhabi,  I was at the house of the Indian Ambassador who had invited me for dinner. It was an august gathering where I met Ambassadors from other countries,  high ranking officials from the diplomatic world, eminent writers and many other people. The respect I received was overwhelming I was introduced to everyone proudly as one of India's most successful authors.

With the Indian Ambassador Mr.Navdeep Suri, Dy.Chief of Mission Smita Pant and Ravi Menon


You know--here's the funny thing: The world sees me as a celebrity. But to be honest, I don't even think about it at all!

 Of course, I am proud of all that I have achieved and I am not dismissing it.

But when I meet people, I am genuinely interested in what they do. I get bored when people ask me about myself. I do not like talking about ME--because all the information is out there on wikipedia, and you can also google me (and you will be surprised to see me giving you video answers..It's a facility which Google has extended to very few celebrities, Priyanka Chopra and yours truly being one of them).



I have  been interviewed by BBC world which reaches more than 200 countries, and more than a 400 million people. You can watch the interview on my website.
I have  also been interviewed by every major magazine and newspaper--Conde Nast, Verve, Cosmopolitan, The Hindu, Times of India etc.

So when a news coverage appears about me, I don't usually put it up. But yesterday, I shared it,  not because I had made it to the newspaper---but because it featured my readers!! I was happy for my readers who were featured. Then I read all the comments on my post yesterday---so many comments that had congratulated ME! I was baffled.

 Honestly--I felt it wasn't so big as to offer me 'Congrats'. Then I thought about why people are congratulating me. Perhaps it was because I hadn't shared the other news items about my new book that had appeared?

So here goes guys! :)

Deccan Herald

The Hindu

New Indian Express

The Statesman

If you want to read it in detail,  here are the links:







There was an interesting question which someone at the party at the amassador's house, asked me. (and many people ask me this question). They ask me how I have the courage to write. They tell me that they want to write, but they are afraid of how they will be perceived, what would others think of them etc.

My answer is always the same: Writing is like standing naked in front of a room full of people and inviting them to make comments about you.

You are that vulnerable when you put your thoughts out there. You have to be strong. That's the only way!
Now this is a paradox---as you also have to be sensitive to write. I am a person who is extremely sensitive. Everything affects me. But over the years, I have learnt to ignore that which is said out of jealousy and malice. I have learnt to sift the criticism and take only what helps me. I have learnt to not hurt when people make remarks. I don't give them any mind space.

That's the only way I can continue writing!

When people tell me 'Oh you are a celebrity...You are a BIG SHOT,' I just smile.  It used to bother me before. But now I have learnt to just shrug it off and move on!

There are better things to think about! My next book calls. My characters beckon. My reading awaits. My dog  needs to be walked. I need to write my next blog post :)

Ever thought about what that feels like? Well, now you know!

Till tomorrow
Keep smiling
Love
Preeti
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Read my latest book yet?  Get it at a 35% discount: Preeti.io/awake




Comments

  1. You are simple and down to earth person. You didn't let your recognition go above your head. How do u keep yourself grounded?

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    1. Hi---thanks so much. It means a lot to me. People pass judgements about me, without even knowing me. My blog is where I am authentic and genuine; I do try to stay grounded. My father once told me 'It's nice to be important, but it is more important to be nice.' I try and follow that <3

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  2. OMG! This is so personal...an informal sneak peek inside your mind and surroundings. The fame and accolades that you get is every bit earned through your persistent writing. Your discipline and dedication towards your work is unmatchable. Through your own real example you inspire millions like me. I have not read many of your books yet. But as they say in Hindi, "Khichdi ke chaawal...!" Just one story - "Hundred little flames" was enough to hook me on to your writing. You are what you are because you never let fame and celebrity status spoil your mind. You remained focussed in just doing your job devotedly. This explains your prolific writing...producing one novel after another. Its not that easy...You have pulled a Herculian task of keeping yourself away from distractions and just doing what you are best at. Loved every word of your post and loved your down to earth humble attitude more.

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    1. Thank you thank you and thank you Alka. Lots of people pass judgements about me without even knowing me :) I am my most authentic self on my blog. I hope you read my other books too :) <3 Many thanks.

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    3. You shine Preeti...even here on your blog you give so much importance to your readers and their comments. This is being nice. I emulate this quality of yours and reply to each one who stays to pen his/her comments on my blog. After being busy with my State Administrative Service, then family and kids, I have returned to my first love - Literature and writing. Hence, a lot of catching up to do. I will sure read your other titles as and when I can. You brought a lingering smile on my face by your lovely response. This is why your readers love you.
      P.S. I am impressed by your picture with the Indian Ambassador for obvious reasons :)

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    4. haha :) Thank you <3 Good luck with your writing. May you always make time for it. <3

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  3. You are such an awesome person Preeti, such a down to earth soul.. Love you loads..
    And this blog is like a family group (without forwarded msgs ;)).. Loving every bit of this..

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    1. Thank you Resh. I feel that way towards the people who visit my blog too..like I am hosting you at my online home :)

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  4. Nice to see all the newspaper clippings and your beaming photos! Will read one by one when time permits. Btw appreciate your curiosity to know the other person better :) A busy day amidst being sick, so I”ll keep today’s comment short. Waiting for the next blogpost ~ Indu.

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