Category Archives: Print Speak

The ovarian lottery!

I recently came across a blog post which revolved around the thought process of a dreamer…one who is not straitjacketed into one primary goal in who has the hunger to explore different facets which interest and stimulate the mental faculties. I have always belonged to this genre of people. I love getting involved in multiple activities. It stretches to reading as well. At any point in time, I am reading 3-4 books for sure. As much as I try giving my undisturbed attention to a particular task or a book for that matter, when I come across an exciting job to do or a book which makes me want to bring everything around me to a standstill and gobble it down, my will power goes haywire. It gives me some kind of an uncanny kick and more importantly makes me happy.

For the last few weeks, I have been writing a lot…for magazines, newspapers and the first book in the pipeline. The reading has gone up a few notches higher too. The exciting part is, the reading has spread its tentacles into Odia Literature too. Until the past few months, I had an aversion towards reading in Odia. There was no particular reason. Blame it on westernization or on the vehement stress that our society places on usage of English Language. Whatever it might be, it never happened.

The journey begun when I was given the task to write about venerable Odia women. It involved a lot of research into their background and since all of it was written in the regional language, I was almost forced to read it. I found it rather irritating, more so because it took me a while to fathom and figure out the coherency in statements, primarily because of lack of practice over the last few years. In due course however, I started liking it. I also started to understand the truth behind the statement when people say that a translated text loses its charm in more ways than one. At this point, after reading many such autobiographies, I am very open to reading in any regional language that I come across, to taste the freshness of language and of perspective, in a society which was very different from ours.

In fact the excitement reached a crescendo when I figured that I would love to read original works of Tagore, which would mean that I would have to pick up Bengali, right from scratch. I called up a friend of mine in Kolkata and asked him to mail a copy of “Shahoj Path”, penned by Tagore and published by Shantiniketan, for beginners in Bengali. This being a Saturday night, he was almost sloshed and thankfully the network saved me of the string of choicest comments (an euphemism), I would have otherwise received.

I hope the peaks continue. I hope the excitement does not wane. I hope I am well versed with Bengali Literature a few years down the line.

Stringing the post to a new note, I shift to one of the current books I am reading titled “Wise and Otherwise”, by Sudha Murty, the Chairperson of the Infosys Foundation. I picked it up after ten minutes of subtle coerciveness by the owner of my favorite book shop, lined on the street, near the railway station, in the capital city of Odissa. I disregarded this lady, not in a very dismissing manner, but for the simple fact that I had the impression that she finds publishers at her doorstep only because she is the better half of an IT icon. After reading the book, I still feel the same, though the respect for her as a person, has increased tremendously. She has picked up 50 everyday occurrences, which salute life; instances which make you stop and ponder about how sensitive or scheming people are. There is a particular part to the book where she talks about recognizing one’s limitations, which touched me. She says that one always starts out with an idealistic perspective that you can change the world. But ideally, one should stress on lighting a single candle as well you can and then move on to lighting as many candles as you can. That might not change the whole world but it certainly changes somebody’s world! How seemingly simple and realistic is the thought behind it!

The book is very lucidly written and makes a decent read. I still think that had she not been associated with Infosys, this book would not have been published. There are scores of bloggers and writers who are much better versed with the language and have a superior might of the elbow.

Ummm…writer’s block! 😀

(An excuse to abruptly shift to another topic 😀 )

I and a couple of friends..we are making a docu-fiction on incest. The last week has been one crazy ride. Visiting film makers, writing and reviewing the script, auditioning for actors and getting the technical part of it in place, meeting tons of possible funding agencies and the like.

An excerpt from a recent conversation with the Senior Security Officer(SSO) at Infosys:

Me: Sir, we want to meet someone from the CSR team. We are making a documentary on incest and would like to talk to them about funding it.

SSO: Hmm…incest!

Me: Yes Sir, its based on male relatives exploiting girls within the family. We want to create awareness about it through a documentary,

SSO: Lemme talk to the HR.

(Wondering what on earth has the HR gotta do with this!)

SSO: Sir, a couple of students have come and are making a film on INSECTS.

Me(Hurriedly Interrupts) : Sir, its INCEST.

SSO: Haan haan.  Sir, its INSECTS. Should I send them over?

(Almost tear my head in frustration)

(Conversation ends. Meeting stalled)

P.S: This post is as randomly connected as it can ever be! Blame the sleeplessness and the blurry eyed, drowsy me…typing out the post, because its been long since I’d updated my blog and also because, Indiblogger will review my site in the next week or so 😀

And why should you read it?

Maybe because I won the ovarian lottery! 🙂


Posted by on March 27, 2011 in As I see it, Print Speak


A baby step in the world of print!

I have always had a thing for writing, particularly the imaginative kind. I did know I would be associated with it at some stage in life but that it would happen so soon, was nothing short of a delight.

The attached image shows the first article that I have had the good fortune of writing for a newspaper. Reading your own piece of work can be cathartic, more so when it is coupled with the idea of your thought reaching out to a hundred other people.

I hope you genuinely like the read and I also hope I continue to be a part of the world of writing in some form or the other, all through my life.

I know this isn’t even close to the Booker 😀 , but I thank Baba for introducing me to the magical world of books at the tender age of 3 and continually feeding me with food for thought through my adolescent years. He is the sole reason for any kind of writing that I would ever produce hereafter.

P.S: As much of humility that I would want to showcase, I’d rather fall for the quest for likes and comments which in this case, will coax a lot more articles out of my being. 🙂


Posted by on March 7, 2011 in Print Speak


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Eat Pray Love

“Eat Pray Love” has been one of the most talked about books in the last few years. Authored by Elizabeth Gilbert, it has been turned into one of the biggest block buster feature films of the year 2010, featuring Julia Roberts.

The book describes the journey of a woman who is in search of fulfillment in life. She is a victim to a failed marriage and is torn from within. Though her spirit is marred, she still has the courage to take a spiritual journey to rediscover herself.

Her thoughts on getting out of a rough marriage, alimony included, “It’s the emotional recoil that kills you, the shock of stepping off the track of a conventional lifestyle and losing all the embracing comforts that keep so many people on that track forever”. She writes in a lineal fashion, without including any sort of euphemism whatsoever.

Her writing will appeal to the fairer sex as much as it will to the males of the society. She visits an ashram in India and writes about the process of getting over her inhibitions about meditation. She continually fights the voices in her head that supersede the terrifying calm that eventually takes over, in her initial days. She understands the ethereal façade that exists, regarding the idea of how a soul mate should be.

She writes, “A true soul mate is probably the most important person you’ll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. But to live with a soul mate forever? Nah. Too Painful. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then they leave.”

She writes with an uncanny ability to hit the cord where it makes the most sense.

The letters that she writes to God in the city of Rome and the palpable excitement she showcases while tasting the best pizza in the world, the Neapolitan Pizza, is strangely and humanly believable!

The story of her journey, from a jilted woman who has the lost the will to live, to a lady who is one with her soul and life and has found the love of her life, is one every woman will relate to.

Julia Roberts says, “It’s what I’m giving all my girl friends”.

This book is a memoir of a woman who is gutsy, adventurous, cares two hoots about what people feel about her, is true to her instincts, down to the minutest bit and believes in her capabilities as a writer, not shying away from pursuing her calling in life.

I recommend Eat Pray Love as one of the must haves in your bedside bookstand. It is one read which will make you smile and cry and give you those proverbial goose bumps at different points in time.

Note: This is a sample book review I had done for one of the leading media houses in the state of Odisha, “Dharitri” ,for the literary section of their upcoming English daily, “Orissa Post“.

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Posted by on March 5, 2011 in Reviews


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Obsessive Fine Print Disorder

It is that time of the year when your facebook wall is pasted with tons of Happy messages, some staid, some funny & some so full of intent! I dissect the ramifications of all the incidents of the year gone by, in my head & wonder, whether one full year has just gone past. To me, it is still the same. But if I have taken anything from the previous year, it is dreams!
Que lindo es sonar despierto”! How lovely is it to dream while you are awake, says Andre Agassi’s coach to inspire him to train harder, to train equally well for the clay courts & to win the French Open! For a guy who hit a million balls every year, till his twenty second, inspiration ought to come naturally. That is not how he thinks. And it makes me realize the importance of SELF-motivation.
This brings me to my obsession for the fine print. I love relating to the content that books carry. I happen to be like a kid in a candy store when I enter a book shop or a book fair or anything related to the magic four letter word B-O-O-K. People think of ways to make a grand entry into yet another year, one that will be synonymous with the weaving of dreams, of hopes, of aspirations! For me, this year is going to be the best I’ve ever had, because I spend it with Agassi, not because he is the greatest tennis player of all times, but because he hated tennis like mad, like crazy, ever since he was made to hit balls from a dragon like structure, day in & day out. Ever since he was four!
For the first time, I realize the significance of how lonely it gets, when you strive to reach the zenith. The whole process, the making of a legend!
I have had surreal experiences when it comes to relating to a character, right since I was a kid. I was surrounded with The Famous Fives, The Secret Sevens, elves, gnomes and tons of other fairy tale characters. Often, I used to wake up with a start because I dreamt about being inside a paneled underground tunnel which opened into the woods. At times, I used to imagine myself in cold, dark dungeons, kidnapped by the evil witch & at others, hatching a plot to discover the secret treasure hidden up in a tower, which had winding,creaky steps to it. One image which is particularly etched in my mind, is that of the white manes of the sea horses likened to the white foam like substance crowning a sea wave. I still picture myself riding a sea horse when I am at a beach.
As I grew up, elves were replaced by the super mysteries of Nancy Drew & Hardy Boys.
I almost wanted to be a CBI official until I discovered the intricacies of the reproductive system, which made me consider a gynecologist as a profession! 😀
Don Michael Corleone , Florentyna Roznovozki, Howard Roark, Dominique Francon, Liz & Danny Taggart have changed the way I look at life. The Eureka moments have come and gone by, where you suddenly understand yourself a wee bit better because you could never articulate that funny aspect of your own self, which the writer has done so beautifully!
Non fiction has been nothing less than a hair raiser, to say the least! The Obamas, Abraham Lincoln, Abdul Kalam, Oprah Winfrey, E R Braithwite, Martin Luther King, Lance Armstrong…I hope the list never comes to an end! It makes me cringe at times & smile at others. The ethereal second, when all you want is a happy ending like in the movies, when you forget eating & sleeping just to keep taking that journey into what seems fictional but stands for veracity, to the last page, to the last morsel! I have derived inspiration from the likes of Buffet & Armstrong in the same breath. How else can one be called the “Oracle of Omaha” and another roughen it out through cancer and yet win the Tour De France, thrice. There is a thread which connects the lies of great men & women. The thread is the Secret- a book I consider my bible! The Secret, which attracts what you believe in like a powerful magnet, like Rhonda Byrne did, like you and me have the power to!
Reading gives me solace akin to none. There is no greater happiness than being born with what I call the Obsessive Fine Print Disorder 🙂
Happy Reading!


Posted by on December 31, 2010 in Print Speak


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Meandering Thoughts

On yet another random spate of imagination, she decided to write. Yes, she decided to compose an anthology of short stories with “Survival” as the underlying theme to it. In an attempt to first study the works of established authors, she started digging into the neatly arranged bookshelves in order to come up with Maxim Gorky, Guy De Maupassant, Jeffery Archer & a personal favorite, Jhumpa Lahiri.
Meandering Thought#1
Wow! Eat Pray Love catches her attention at an obscure corner and as always, she picks it up and reads through the carefully penciled lines, with a remark or two, reminding her of the blissful yesteryears. Attraversiamo ~ Let’s cross over! How many times has she said that to people & how many times has she been reminded of the memorable train journeys made in the pursuit of love! She hurriedly picks up the books and shuts the aluminium almirah in order to let go off another emotional getaway!

Meandering Thought#2
As she rummages through the larder to find something to eat, rather to find something to give her company- boy! did somebody coin the term emotional eating? Well, they have the most faithful ambassador with them now! Cheese spread, if not anything else. Mommy sure has everything else stacked away in fear of her daughter turning into a giant sized panda and not finding someone to marry her! *Smirks*
Meandering Thought#3
Is marriage the sole purpose in life? Why can’t I be like Carrie Bradshaw(refer: Sex & The City) who goes for holidays to exotic locales, is a drop dead gorgeous female even at 40, mind you single at that & a successful writer too? Maybe, because I might as well be Michelle Obama, married to the love of my life! *Wishful Thinking*
Did the careful she turn into a subconscious I?
Disclaimer: This piece is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to any cat/dog, either living or dead,let alone a human, is purely coincidental & unintentional.
Meandering Thought#4
Why can’t I go on a yoga retreat & rediscover myself through a sattvic pursuit of kriya & discipline? Yea, talk about getting up at 2 in the afternoon * Self ridicules*
Immediately connects to the World Wide Web( God bless the ingenuity of the mind who created it & made me a social network addict). Google search——-Yoga retreats in India—Result—Tureya Ashram in Kodaikanal—looks good. Gives me a queasy feeling. This is where I should be. Ohh turn that off and try meditating at home! No…first get that darn sleep cycle right!
She picks up the “Interpreter of Maladies” & reads about the tales of separation and love, of the quaint Mr Pirazda & his seven daughters, getting their hair braided and setting out for school.
Meandering Thought#5
Seven ages of men
“Then, the whining schoolboy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school”
Shakespeare talking about men and women merely being players having their “exits and entrances”!

The journey to becoming a writer will be an interesting one!


Posted by on December 29, 2010 in As I see it, Print Speak

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