My new book is out. It’s the second book I’ve written and it’s non fiction. It’s called The Merchant of Stories and it follows my journey as a creative entrepreneur–a voyage where I juggle the dual hats of living in this world as a creative as well as navigating the marketplace in which my work is published and distributed.
The Kinokuniya flagship store is located on Orchard Road–Singapore’s iconic shopping district. I’ve always found the entrance to the bookstore rather modest and inconspicuous. The moment I walk in, however, I am always spellbound by the impressive 33,000 sq. ft. space that houses an extensive collection of more than 400,000 titles from all over the world.
There’s a lot that goes on behind-the-scenes as I do what it takes to keep the whole machine functioning as a business. The corporate world has a reputation for being cold and heartless–for treating people like cogs in a machine and extracting value from them for the purpose of profit. Is the capitalist system really as toxic as it is made out to be?
As the Editor-in-Chief of Mith Books, I lead a team of writers. I’ve now had the opportunity to work with, meet and interview creatives from all fields — artists, musicians, and even dancers. Despite the choice of art form, we are all on the same journey. With each interview I conduct and with each article I edit, I discover one universal truth about ‘us’ over and over again.
Apprentice-style learn-by-doing is a trademark of Gujarati businesses. I had learnt under a master from the day I emerged from the womb. Business school felt trivial and theoretical in comparison. During my first year, I gave my lecturers a hard time by misbehaving and sleeping in class. My good grades came as a surprise to them. Who needs school when life is our best teacher?
Many startups look for funding when they begin a business and whilst having some seed capital is essential to starting any enterprise – money can only take you so far. If you’re dealing with investors who are just looking for a quick return on their cash investment – that ship is highly likely to sink fast.