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Terribly Tiny Tales - Believers in brevity

Anuj Gosalia and Chintan Ruparel of Terribly Tiny Tales  

In the summer of 2013, when Anuj Gosalia was scrolling through his newsfeed, he realised that memes, selfies and other avoidable materials were the most popular things on Facebook. Perturbed by the content that was available to netizens, especially to those who spend so much time on social media, he felt that it was important to create better content. The annoyance he felt that day, as a writer, helped him conceptualise the idea of 'Terribly Tiny Tales'. Terribly Tiny Tales (TTT) are stories written within 140 characters (including spaces). “Terribly Tiny Tales borrowed from the brevity of Twitter, the impact of flash fiction and the social web’s opportunity to easily collaborate. Also, the packaging of the tale into an image made it visually attractive and easy to consume,” says Anuj.

Anuj mentions that he started off without any big strategy. He invited a few friends who he knew were great writers and started a Facebook page with a team of 12. The immediate positive response on the page was evidence enough that this fresh product easily connected with people and they welcomed it as a break from the other memes that infested timelines. The team eventually expanded and so did their social media presence. A website was created and they established their presence on Instagram and Twitter. Now, everyone is invited to write a tale, and if it is good enough, it will be published with due credits.

In April 2014, Chintan Ruparel, a close friend of Anuj, got onboard as the co-founder of TTT. Chintan’s ability to impressively narrate a tale and Anuj’s background in business made them a great team with a goal to promote TTT as the world’s largest micro content platform.

A few weeks ago, they collaborated with United Colours of Benetton and wrote tales on the topic of LGBT. The images of their tales were rainbow-coloured to commemorate the legalisation of gay marriages in all 50 states of the U.S. They are planning a long-term engagement with UCB, which is going to start from August onwards, where they put out one solid, human insightful tale every Sunday. They have previously collaborated with Cornetto, Max Life Insurance and Amnesty International. The collaborations aren’t brand promotions but just a platform to write tales based on the messages these brands want to communicate. “We are absolutely happy to partner brands as long as they don’t interfere with the story telling and dictate the content,” says Chintan.

In an attempt to incorporate micro fiction in videos, Anuj and Chintan came up with the idea of Terribly Tiny Talkies, which is the most recent innovation of theirs, and received applause from the audience who were followers of Terribly Tiny Tales. “To go about the idea, we invited a set of friends who were in the film industry. The fact that we were already popular as a story-telling platform was credible enough for them to readily agree to contribute to Terribly Tiny Talkies,” says Chintan.

The theme for the first season of Terribly Tiny Talkies was love and it came out on Valentine’s Day this year. Five short films were produced, each of them about five minutes, which portrayed different perspectives on the concept of love and filmmakers pushed the boundaries of byte-sized storytelling. Encouraged by the good response, they launched the second season on the occasion of Mother’s Day. The third season is yet to come out. The theme is India and the talkies will be released on or around Independence Day. They are encouraging contribution from their fans. Anyone can send in a script that revolves around the theme and the five best entries will be chosen and turned into a video.

They explain that shooting a video requires a lot more effort than creating a tale because the former depends on various factors like production, equipment, permission, cost, location, post-production, crew, styling and acting and this is the reason for the slow but steady development of Terribly Tiny Talkies. “Terribly Tiny Tales started with a team of 15 writers, but now there is something called ‘TTT live’, where anyone around the world can contribute a tale and the best tale will be published. For talkies too, we might do the same in the future,” says Anuj.

About the future plans for TTT, Chintan, quotes Reid Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn: “An entrepreneur is someone who jumps off a cliff and builds a plane on the way down.”


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Printable version | Jan 25, 2022 12:09:58 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/terribly-tiny-tales-believers-in-brevity/article7429592.ece

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