Chanpreet Singh on Staying Curious and Using Your Imagination Well

An interview with Chanpreet Singh from The Write Stuff series:

Chanpreet Singh is a poet, actor and a writer based in California, USA. He regularly recites his poetry at various events in the San Francisco Bay Area, where his work has been appreciated by audiences of diverse backgrounds. He has performed in various plays and films both in US and India and has been regularly recognized for his work. Along side his pursuit of arts, he also works as a Director at a multi-national consultancy firm advising large companies based in Silicon Valley.

चनप्रीत िसंह कैिलफ़ोरिनया, अमेिरका में रहने वाले एक किव, अिभनेता और लेखक हैं। वह तथाक्रम अपनी रची किवताएँ सान फ़्रांिसस्को में आयोिजत सम्मेलनों में पढ़ते रहे हैं। उन्होंने अमेिरका और भारत में िविभन्न नाटकों और िफ़ल्मों में काम िकया है, िजसके िलए वह िनत्य सराहे गए हैं। कला के प्रित प्रेम और िनष्ठा के साथ साथ, चनप्रीत एक बहुराष्ट्रीय कंसल्टेंसी फ़मर् में बतौर डाइरेक्टर िसिलकन वैली में स्थािपत कम्पिनयों के सलाहकार का काम भी करते हैं। 

When people ask what do you do, you tell them…?

My answer has varied over time and has ranged from something very precise about my day job to a detailed description of many things I engage in, from acting in theater and films, writing poetry, blogging on social media, to working as a risk management professional in Silicon Valley.

If someone said I want to do what you do, what advice would you have for them?

I’ll say, “Follow your heart first. If your heart tells you that you truly want to do what I do, then go all out. You will eventually find your true path. You are unique, so will be your journey.”

What’s been most important to your writing: education, or the real world? Why?

Education gave me the tools, the real world inspires me. Simple things around us: people, places, objects, events, and the relationships amongst them. One doesn’t have to go very far looking for inspiration. Sometimes change in scenery or setting can give you a new perspective, but inspiration is everywhere from a tiny ant crawling on the ground to a gigantic cloud floating in the sky. We just need to pay more attention.

If you could give advice to your 15 year old self, what would it be?

Be more observant, pay more attention to this world of wonders, and don’t take yourself too seriously.

Do you consider yourself successful? Why?

Yes. Every day brings some success, big and small. Every day I fall, but I rise and continue walking, and I celebrate that. The day I stop walking, will be the day I fail.

Why do you get up every morning?

To embrace the day, to kiss the light, to romance the air, and to answer my prayer.

What’s wrong with society today?

We have too much information and less wisdom. We have many opinions and less truth. We have more things and yet we are unfulfilled. We are more polarized and less tolerant. We have become better at imitation, but worse with original thinking.

What is your fondest memory?

The expression on my parents’ faces when I handed them my first ever paycheck.

What would you like to see happen in your lifetime?

I have a very long list of experiences I aspire to have in this lifetime. From writing bestsellers, starting up a successful venture, opening up a coffee shop to acting in multiple films. I have a feeling I’m going to be able to do all of that.

What is art? Is it necessary? Why?

This is a difficult question, and I believe no words can fully answer it. Art is the best representation of the world and its state. Art exists because the world exists. The world exists because art exists.

What’s your relationship to clothes?

I’m grateful for my clothes. They represent me to be more than I am. I’m also ungrateful, for they limit other’s perception of all that I can be.

What are you working on right now?

I’m working on my second book of poetry. Aside from writing poetry, I intend to write more fiction, from short stories to full-length novels.

If there were one thing about the Bay Area that you would change, what would it be?

This will likely resonate with a lot of other people. Reduce the cost of living. This will attract more creative people than we currently have.

A night on the town: what does that mean to you?

People watching, meeting strangers, hearing new perspectives, making new friends.

What’s the most important life lesson you’ve learned?

The world is limited by our understanding of it. Learn more. Stay curious. What you imagine can become your reality. Use your imagination well.

What can you do with 50 words? 50 dollars?

50 words can change someone’s heart. 50 Dollars can change someone’s future.

What are some of your favorite smells?

The smell of first rain. The smell of the grass. The smell of hair of my first love.

What are you unable to live without?

Space to think freely

If you got an all-expenses-paid life experience of your choice, what would it be?

Travel 100 countries.

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