HYDERABAD: Many have interesting stories to tell. They want to make people laugh, cry or even get scared with the tales they weave. However, finding publishers or chasing movie moguls is not easy, and printing books on their own can be an expensive option.
Kahaniya, available as a website and a mobile app (on Android and iOS), is one platform that bridges the gap between a storyteller and his/her audience.
With over 40,000 downloads across the stores, they have a community of 2,500 writers. In March alone, they saw 400 new writers create on Kahaniya, a 75 percent jump.
“The lockdown also increased our readership between March and July”, informed Pallav Bajjuri, founder and CEO, Kahaniya. When a writer wrote a story here to explore his interest in writing, it quickly became one of the bestselling stories on the platform.
The story was so captivating, that it was made into a Telugu action thriller film, Kalki, which released in June last year. Awe, another Telugu psychological thriller’s story was also picked up from here.
Two books – Life Aaj Kal (Hindi, 2020) and Daitya Diaries (English, 2019) have been published after the stories won contests on this platform. “Three more books are in the making and will be released by the end of the year”, shares Pallav.
“Kahaniya, a marketplace for vernacular or regional content” was started in 2016 as an experiment by Hyderabadis Pallav and Vatsav Konreddy, cofounder and CTO. It turned into a full-fledged organisation in 2019.
“We wanted to organise the Indian literature market,” says Pallav. “This medium acts as the bridge between readers, industry and creative talent. So, if a writer wants to get a book published or wants to pitch a story for films/OTT or wants to find an audience in readers or even just improve their writing, Kahaniya provides the right environment for them,” explains he. While the platform supports 11 languages, including English, currently it is active in Telugu, Hindi and English, and will add more Indian languages soon. The app itself is free and so are the submissions.
However, writers are provisioned with a monetisation engine, using which they can set a price on the stories that they publish. “If readers want to consume this content, they pay the price set by the writer. This purchase becomes the writers’ earnings on the platform. We take a 50 per cent cut when the writer makes money,” says Pallav. Reiterating that the app hosts a healthy mix of free and paid stories, Pallav says a dedicated editorial team keeps a tab on all the incoming content. What makes the platform popular? Pallav says, “It’s our i n n o v a t i o n w i t h micro-payments. When the writers discovered that they could earn money by publishing stories, they started producing high-quality stories.” He adds: “It is hard for talent to get discovered, branded, marketed and commercialised, and we are here to help them achieve that.” —