‘There is need to put the spotlight on women writing’

Shailli Chopra, founder of SheThePeople, talks about the exclusive book club by women, for women and about women
Shailli Chopra
Shailli Chopra

A new book club aiming to develop a community that encourages women writers is attracting readers of the National Capital Region (NCR). After receiving a warm reception in Mumbai, SheThePeople is replicating the format in NCR. The first session was conducted in Gurgaon by journalist and author Sagarika Ghose, who spoke about her book Indira: India’s Most Powerful Prime Minister.

Shailli Chopra, founder of SheThePeople, says, “The book club was set up four months ago as a group, which is vibrant in many ways. Now we have also started doing events around the book club with established authors such as Natasha Badhwar, Sonya Dutta, Gayatri Jayaraman, and many more.”

The club hopes to bring together people from diverse backgrounds and interests, and bound together by their love of books and reading. Through their planned online and offline events with readers and authors, the club is looking to put forward the most anticipated books, as well as books that perhaps don’t get the kind of visibility they should.

So, is it exclusively for women authors? “It is. I believe there is need to put the spotlight on women writing. Authors, bloggers, writers, micro-bloggers, and others. We believe an author today is more digital, and experiments with formats. Besides, not enough female writers have a platform to engage and connect with their readers,” says the entrepreneur.

The club is committed to bringing forth the voices of women writers on various issues and with the help of this venture, creating a channel of communication between readers and authors.

What kind of reading material is the club interested in? “Works by women, for women and about women,” she says. At the same time, the book club is aiming to bring forth the talent of new talented writers and develop a book-loving community.

The sessions are conducted through online chats, discussions, Facebook Live, offline events and simply some great conversations through the day. Till date hundreds of online and about four offline sessions have been conducted that have recieved a great response. “We are going pan-India with this. Events have been slated in Bengaluru, Chennai, and Pune too,” Shailli says.

Elaborating on the response the initiative has garnered, she says, “It’s been spectacular. We have 1,300 members online. It’s a space that’s alive with real people and real commentary, and of course, the love for writing and reading.”

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The New Indian Express