While pursuing her passion for books, in a freewheel chat with Aparajita Jaiswal, Tara Khandelwal shares her journey in building Bound from scratch through podcasts with famous authors on “Books and Beyond with Bound.” An ambition young woman with much to bring to the world, Tara Khandelwal has created a world of proximity between writers, readers and authors, leading to a sanctuary for the literary arts.
Bookworm, Tara Khandelwal, an editor and writer, is a graduate of Barnard College, Columbia University and the Columbia Publishing Course. She has worked with organizations like Penguin, BloombergQuint and SheThePeople.TV. Although, her most prized achievement is as a founder of Bound which provides skill building for creativity through writers’ retreats, workshops, writing coaching and editorial services.
Tara, alongside her co-founder, Michelle D’costa, has created a podcast called ‘Books and Beyond with Bound’. On this podcast, the ambitious and perspicacious Tara Khandelwal and Michelle D’costa speak to India’s most profound contemporary writers like Manu Pillai, Lisa Ray, Avni Doshi and more, providing voracious readers insights into their favourite authors’ lives.
Across international waters, many countries provide various resources for aspiring writers like writing retreats, writing courses, coaching and many more. Tara envisioned something similar and brought it home to India and created similar resources through Bound. “There was an emerging literary culture and people interested in the art of literature but education for the literary arts was international so I decided to plug that cap and started my journey through writer’s retreats, one of the first in India. This was to provide aspiring writers with quality and affordable education.”
Her motive was to bridge the gap between readers and their favorite authors and also to provide authors with a platform to engage in teaching what they have procured from this field. After a couple of retreats, bound took to also teaching in various cities like Mumbai and Pune, online and in-person. They teach creative writing for fiction and poetry through meditative writing, screenwriting and various others, their mandate being skill building for creatives. To that end, Bound also provides editorial and mentoring services, enabling authors and writers to work on their projects on a one on one basis.
The podcasts, books and beyond with bound, is an attempt to bring readers and writers closer to the authors they love and admire. “It was a dream project for us,” she says. They are almost done with their first season and are definitely going to begin recording their second season.
“I wish there were more readers for all the writers out there. That’s one thing I’d like to change about the world.” Tara Khandelwal
“Every author that I have worked with I admire for their strong and stellar work ethic.” When asked if as a kid she admired a particular author that encouraged her to pursue a career in this field Tara immediately replied with Enid Blyton. “I was four or five when I first started reading and I started with Enid Blyton. I remember being mind blown when I read my first book, The Secret Island. I didn’t understand the joy of reading at that age but I kept reading and reading from there on forward.”
“Every part of my job is challenging but equally fulfilling but the most challenging part is innovating and finding new ways to grow.” Tara says that finding new ways to grow and starting new projects is always challenging but also scary as you never know what is going to happen. “Keeping up motivation is challenging,” she says.
“I perceive success as hard work and pushing oneself out of their comfort zone. It is when you know you’re not being complacent and always striving for the next step. For me success would be setting new goals and working to achieve it and having a mentality to achieve resilience.” Tara Khandelwal
Besides writing Tara also enjoys yoga as she likes to work out and keep fit and healthy. She also enjoys learning various things. In her free time she does classes and learns about new things and passing her time reading.
When asked if she would ever write a book of her own after working to edit other authors’ work she says, “Never say never as never is not in my vocab.” So here’s hoping she does write a book with her profound skill set. Tara Khandelwal has also worked as an editor for Writers’ Side, the biggest literary agency in India, Hachette, Rupa and UK-based Eyewear Publishing, among many others all together.