Indians have a long and rich tradition of endeavour, creativity, and ingenuity. The extraordinary results of this are visible in so many fields and aspects of daily life. It is only right that the ordinary people accomplishing extraordinary things are celebrated.
In recent years, there has been a paradigm shift in the way we celebrate the accomplishments of ordinary Indians. The make-up of Padma awardees reflects this shift. More than ever before, the awards lists are decorated by ordinary, previously unknown people who project the diversity of India and whose lifework focuses on community, culture, and craft. These people are steeped in local traditions and wisdom that are earthy, raw, real, rustic, and sustainable. They draw inspiration from a civilization that is increasingly at ease with its roots and squarely facing the challenges towards an aspirational future.
What better way to celebrate the Padma awardees, particularly those who have distinguished themselves through exceptional achievements specifically in the fields categorised as social work and other areas of endeavour, than to compile compelling narratives of the best among the best: ordinary Indians achieving the extraordinary for the betterment of society?
We are thus pleased to announce an exciting opportunity and invite passionate writers to contribute to a curated anthology of these extraordinary stories of the lives and achievements of India’s most celebration-worthy citizens. In this respect, the anthology will reflect the joyful spirit and “feeling” that D.V. Sridharan captured in “Good News India (Bloomsbury 2021) and will be published as its sequel.
How to Participate:
Interested authors are invited to write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Good News India -2“. Please include the following information in your email:
- Your name
- Your age
- Your contact details (email address and phone number)
- Your previous writing experience
- A 300-400 word statement of interest and proposal submission, stating the awardee you wish to write about.
- Registration along with Subject selection and Proposal submission will remain open until July 15th, 2023.
The subject shall be a Padma awardee from 2015 onwards. In making a choice, the following criteria must be applied:
- The awardee must not have been previously recognised either as a public figure, celebrity, intellectual, etc. For this reason, awardees from cinema, media, sport, mainstream education, literature and art, politics, and those with national or international connections and exposure are excluded.
- The awardee must be one that the writer is able to visit personally and interview.
Besides stating the Padma awardee that you intend to write about, please include your proposed approach specifically incorporating why your chosen subject is compelling and what it is about the story that resonates with you.
Approval and Research
Each proposal will be reviewed and the applicants for those that have been approved by a panel will be contacted. At this point, the writer will begin the formal research, interview and writing on their selected Padma awardee.
A brief “style guide” prepared by D.V. Sridharan will be provided to all selected writers. Applicants whose proposals have been approved will be notified from the cut-off of 15 July 2023 onwards but not anticipated to extend beyond September 2023, so as to meet the overall timescales for the launch of the Anthology. Selected authors will be given a six-week deadline from the point of approval to submit their essay.
The complete, personally written, “Turnitin proof” essay, which shall be of no less than 1750 and no more than 2250 words is to be submitted via a link that will be notified to the writers selected.
The essay is expected to be well-crafted and delve deeply into the awardee’s life, work, and its impact that led to Padma recognition. Essays must highlight the extraordinary triumph of the awardee along with the essence of their journey.
The essay will be required to be submitted within six weeks of the writer being notified of approval of their proposal.
The Editorial panel will carefully review all submissions and make a final selection of essays for inclusion in the Anthology.
Selected authors, at this stage, may receive guidance and mentoring from established authors and writing coaches to refine and polish their work into a form ready for publication. The Editorial panel will finalise the choice of selected essays for inclusion in the Anthology by December 2023
The Anthology, working title, “Padma Awardees – A Celebration of Ordinary Indians, Extraordinary Triumphs” a.k.a. “Good News India -2”, will be published in early 2024 . Jay Jina, Director -Chitrayana, INDICA Books, will curate and oversee the coordination and publication process. A proposal to simultaneously publish a coffee table book pictographically capturing the awardees contributions is also under active consideration.
So, do join us on this exciting celebratory journey!