The first try came with direction when Swanand wrote and directed a play on freedom fighter Bhagat Singh in New Delhi. During his theatre days, he learnt that Manju Singh, a television serial producer, was looking for a writer for his serial Swaraj, also on Bhagat Singh. He went to Mumbai, and had an apartment in Warden Road. When the serial ended, he gave up his apartment and settled down in Goregaon, a Mumbai suburb.
Swanand was later introduced to filmmaker Pankaj Parashar, who in turn, introduced him to director Sudhir Mishra. Mishra was doing a serial called Talash, with his assistant Ruchi Narain. He started assisting Sudhir while he was making Calcutta Mail and then it continued with Chameli and Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi.