SINGAPORE – Media OutReach – 8 February 2021 – Ukiyoto Singapore Pte Ltd. starts out the year 2021 with exciting releases ranging across mystery thrillers, memoirs, biographies and culinary reviews. With its focus on literary activities in Asia, this season of Litteratura, The Literary Magazine slated for release end Feb’21 covers few of the best authors and writers from Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and India.
In Q3 FY20-21, Ukiyoto had tied up with a chain of mega bookstores such as Kinokuniya, MPH, Times, LitBook Cafe via distributor Gerakbudaya in Malaysia to source books for placement at their stores. Several outdoor activities such as book launch, book reading, award ceremonies and others are planned in the second half of 2021 based on government decisions with regards the pandemic.
To mark the Chinese New Year 2021, an online live Panel Discussion is scheduled on 14th Feb, 12:30pm PHT on the topic, “Scope of Literature in Asia post Pandemic”. The panel comprises writers from Philippines — Lia de Jesus, Nicole Narvato, Karmela Mirriam Ebreo and Anne Marla moderated by best selling author, Shrutidhora P Mohor from India.
Christine Musa, author from Philippines says, “My book entitled, ‘I Escaped the Narcissist: Memoirs of an Empath Supernova‘ was the very first ever published book that I have, all thanks to Ukiyoto Publishing for making my dream of becoming a published author finally come true!
This book contains recounts of my actual experiences of being in a toxic relationship with a Covert Narcissist. As a Narcissistic Abuse survivor, my main goal in coming up with this book is to provide awareness, give helpful information, and share the lessons to those who are still trapped and trying to escape the nightmare.”
Christine’s future plans as a published author is to produce more content which are focused around having a peaceful life away from any form of abuse and a truthful life away from any pretentions driven by the desire to have a picture-perfect ideal life.
Karmela Mirriam Ebreo, a Filipina by blood and birth is a lawyer by profession and a blogger by passion. An active member of Soroptimist International, a global volunteer organization working to economically empower women and girls, she started Mirriam Dictionary back in 2009 when she was about to graduate college. Life had a few surprises along the way and she ended up in law school. Her recently released title, Life Un-Counselled supposed to be a collection of her musings and life hacks — That is what the title is really about, life counselling. Since she is not a psychologist but a case counsel — not an expert on life in general, it was tweaked to be “un-counselled”. However, upon consultation with Ukiyoto, she was advised that it was best to feature her craft projects for her first book with the subtitle: a case of quick craft projects.
Mirriam loves DIYs and everything crafting but hates long and complicated ones. In a nutshell, the book is for those who are like her — a lazy type of crafter.
“I am all for women empowerment. Women and girls have so much to offer this world, and when they are empowered, they can contribute more to society. Most women are inherently creative but sometimes they are discouraged by complexities. In a way, Life un-counselled: a case of quick craft project seeks to inspire these creative hearts to begin. That is also why extremely easy projects are featured in the book. From here, they can start a small business too like paper crafts or party favors. If they do that, they are one step closer to becoming economically empowered women, the goal of the organization I am in– Soroptimist International. The book somehow tries to achieve that too.” as Mirriam tells us.
Vartika Sharma Lekhak, our author from India is a post-graduate in History from JNU, an educator by profession and a travel writer.
She is the author of the book — Bra Strap, and two anthologies — When Women Speak Up and The Take Off. The short-story collection Bra Strap — The stories hidden beneath the strings gives voice to the subdued tales of women from different walks of life. It highlights the message that everyone has a story to tell, some of them are magnificent, while some are ordinary. But every story needs to be told. The Anthology ‘When Women Speak Up’, published by Women’s Web, features leading women voices in India including her contribution, ‘The Girl With Sealed Vagina.’ The Take Off, a passionate project of Cyclops, is India’s first book that brings true stories of Indian cyclists, including her contribution, ‘A Housewife’s Bike Love Story.’
From childhood, Vartika liked to maintain a writing journal. Even today she has a trunk full of old diaries, letters which she considers as her priced possessions.
Vartika’s Inspiration: “Very early I had discovered that the message which I can put across through my writing is more impactful than the spoken words. I find writing a more resonating tool than anything else. Like, when I was in grade nine, I was punished by the headmistress for something which was not my mistake. I was so angry and hurt, didn’t know how to react. Then I wrote a poem expressing my detest at the injustice and the next day in the school assembly recited it. Of course, after that, the headmistress was more annoyed and my games period were banned, but I was now at peace for speaking up.”
Vartika’s writing continued through the college days in the campus journals and sometimes through the young writers’ meets. By then it had evolved into words that were sensitive but also sharp. She was writing more about social impacts, such as the incidences of rape, dowry deaths, gender prejudice, lawlessness and others. Some of them were published in the national dailies and online forums engaged in serious discussion about these issues. The turning point came when she started receiving encouraging letters from the readers. This motivated her that there are many who think like her and most importantly, her pen is making an impact. Like a reader wrote, ‘I am the father of a boy and I read your article ‘The Mother of a Daughter.’ Thank you for an uncensored narrative of a mother’s fears. We need to read more of this more often.’
Shrutidhora P Mohor, had her debut with her autobiographical novel The Unknown Script which is a story of a young professional woman’s journey in life. Two of her next writings, both long stories, went on to take her ahead into the world of literature by clearly establishing her preferred genre as literary fiction with a strong element of politics and shades of romance in it. Of these two, Twenty Three Summers remains her most-read, most-loved work, blending the political dispute in Kashmir with a same-sex love story. The other one, Showing Results: Zero of Zero is a futuristic dystopian tale of a reclusive man and his possible encounters with alien life and the utterly real consequences of that in a digitised, virtual existence of mankind. Set in India of 2049 it is a story that silences the din and bustle of our wearily repetitive, social mediatised lives with a truth that is simple yet disturbing.
The next publication has been Where the Sky Feels Cold, a novella resituating the much-adored couple Sudarshan and Rukhi in an intensely conflictual politically destabilised contemporary India of 2019. Making a renewed use of the ‘political’ in her writings Mohor went on to pen a long story called Nefeli and Us: A Story of Love from the Past which got converted then into a graphic novel. A unique piece of work, it is a continuation of her tradition of writing which takes a serious look into even more serious questions of identity and rights through the lens of fiction, this time going back thousands of years into the Greek city-states of the classical Hellenic times.
Her latest single title The Last Gift is once again a novella in which Mohor explores postmodernist story-telling (taking advantage of her academic background, her professional competence, and her disciplinary base as a student of Political Science) by writing a story of perplexing interactions between an author-mentor and an author-disciple of his which tear apart metanarratives and the framework of sequence/ chronology of story-telling.
Sofia Naznim is a corporate strategist, author, blogger, and influencer from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. While speaking to her she says, “I have always wanted to be an author from the first day I discovered that my ultimate passion is writing when I was thirteen years old! It took me seventeen years to fulfil my ultimate dream which is becoming an author. It didn’t happen overnight or in a short period of time. The journey was interesting yet challenging and full of obstacles. I truly believe that if we want to achieve something so hard, we need to fully prepare and work for it and be persistent no matter how tough the journey will be. Even though there were many trials encountered in my journey, I still persevere and work hard to pursue my dream. I’m happy that I stayed true in what I truly believe in, didn’t give up and endeavoured towards achieving my goals.
I seriously began sharing my articles with people when I was twenty five years old. From there onwards, I have written more than three hundred articles along with the creation of my own website with stories, and reviews. In October 2020, I finally released my first motivational book, “A Book of Life (ABOL)“. ABOL will take you in the deep journey of enlightening you to find your motivation and inspiring you to be a better you. ABOL is available in Paperback and eBook now on Amazon, Kindle, Google Play, Ukiyoto, showcased at Frankfurt Buchmesse both in online as well as paperback formats! May all us can make a difference in our lives, the life of others and other beings too by reading ABOL.”
Harish Muralidhar, a twenty-five year from India published his book, “What is Justice?” in December 2020 and has since then been on several interviews and panels speaking about his book. Harish believes Quotes can bring a drastic as well as a positive change in one’s life and they have helped him overcome difficult circumstances in his life, which was what made him come up with his first book “52 Quotes to Change Your Life.”
“I have always had the passion to write from my school days but never dared to choose it as a career. But after I started my business, I decided to spare some time for my passion and lockdown has also helped to finish my book quickly. As previously stated writing is not a full-time profession for me at this point in time, I have always motivated others to follow their passion without compromising their profession, which would give them immense satisfaction.
Watching the news and movies which revolves about the crime and tragedy in the world has affected me deeply and I wanted to bring awareness to the world about it, so I decided to write a crime fiction book which is my second book named, ‘What is Justice?’, which is a crime thriller.”
Ethel Da Costa, an award winning Lifestyle Journalist, former Editor and Radio Head, an International Lifestyle Influencer, a global nomad, a seeker of truth and love released her book, The Stiletto Foodie — A Blog Binge in Malaysia (on 1st January 2021) which is her own discovery of self and soul in Malaysia through food. She had showcased twelve culinary ambassadors who she believes represent their own journey and their expression of self through the food they create and showcase to the world.
“I feel there is a series coming out from this title since there is so much more to write on food and the food of Malaysia. In fact, food of the different countries I hope I travel through. It’s so exciting.” says Ethel.
Ethel has been on this journey for the last thirty years with a multi-faceted media career that has taken her all over the world. One such journey brought her to Malaysia in November 2019 invited by Malaysia Tourism. They invited her back again in February 2020 when she decided that she was going to heed the call of Malaysia; hence returned in March 2020 and is now currently based in Kuala Lumpur. Meeting talented chefs and their experiences and journeys made a deep impact on her.
“It brought me home to myself. The more I got to know the soul of Malaysia, the more I was experiencing healing and a freedom, a letting go, which also evolved into food blogs. A very intimate journey exists between the food and emotions. The gift of words is my vocation. There is a purpose to this gift. I’m just honouring it here on my time on Earth.”