Theatre. Writing. Management? Might sound like an unlikely combination of professions for a lay person. But for Rajiv Rajendra, they make up his daily bread. The two-time author, whose book, The League, was launched in the city recently, has several fingers in a lot of yummy pies and wants to make the most of them.
The CEO of a consulting company that trains consultants, Rajiv’s tryst with writing started with his involvement in theatre. “I started writing short plays when I was young, both in India and abroad. Moving on from drama to prose was the next step,” he explains calmly from behind the desk of his office in Nungambakkam. The League is Rajiv’s second fiction book. “It’s a sequel to Doosra, which is also about cricket,” he says.
The League, as the name suggests, has everything to do with the IPL (okay, that’s just implied) — including the intrigue, the numerous scandals and controversies. The possibility of what can go wrong if things aren’t the way they are, is the theme the book explores. “Cricket is India’s biggest religion and it always inspires some sort of a debate — people love to hate cricket,” explains Rajiv with unabashed grin. “And behind all that glitz and glamour, there’s always something hanging over the game. That’s what I wanted to portray. That and a bit of my own fantasy.”
That’s to be expected given that Rajiv’s a huge fan of the fantasy genre. “I’ve read everything in that genre,” he says with a grin. “Though my favourites are JRR Tolkien, Douglas Adams and Martin. I also like Kalki,” he adds. Apart from devouring fantasy books at a fantastical rate, Rajiv is currently busy with Chennai’s biggest 10-minute theatre festival. “Yes, we’re organising the Short and Sweet Theatre Festival along with Blue Lotus, a non-profit organisation that promotes the arts. So, I’m currently tied up a bit with that,” he says.
With The League, Rajiv brings his total book count to three, including his management book that he’s published between the two cricket books. And there’s another one in the offing. “But this one is a management book, not fiction,” he says.
Also, there is a third book in the series, following Doosra and The League closely. “I haven’t named it yet, but it has to do with the life of a bookie. It was an interesting topic and given the current climate, I thought it was very relevant,” he says.
Apart from cricket, the fantasy enthusiast in him is also attempting a book in the Tamil fantasy genre. “It will take me some time, but I’ll buckle down to it soon,” he says rubbing his hands with glee.