Saturday, 23 June 2012

The Winter of Our Discontent

This day, on 23rd June 1961 John Steinbeck's The Winter of Our Discontent was published.  Despite not-very-favorable reviews after launch, he went on to win the Nobel in 1962. 
In his acceptance speech, he said, "the writer is delegated to declare and to celebrate man's proven capacity for greatness of heart and spirit—for gallantry in defeat, for courage, compassion and love. In the endless war against weakness and despair, these are the bright rally flags of hope and of emulation. I hold that a writer who does not believe in the perfectibility of man has no dedication nor any membership in literature."

Gift a Book

Please keep the books that you can spare and share separately.  The next CLS event would be announced soon, and you can bring your collection to us so that we can gift it over to someone who would love to read.  The Gift a Book box will also be ready soon and would be placed at a public place where you can drop the books to be gifted.
In the meanwhile, Mail Today, published a little snipped about our initiative today.  A good reminder for everyone to continue to support it.
Fortunately, Chandigarh is waking up to literary activities and everyday we find joyous 'parents' (authors) fondly holding their 'new born' (book).  Keep writing. Keep sharing your thoughts. There is no better mentor and friend than a book.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Today is the Last Day!

Each day is a gift, someone said. And if it be the last day, what you would do? I'm reminded of Nickelbeck's song "If today was your last day".  It says "Leave no stones unturned", and "so live like you're never livin twice".  A great inspiration.
But today is the last day, indeed...for you to let the creative fluids flow and enter your short story in the CLS Short Story Writing Competition.
Come on. Let's do it. 

Monday, 11 June 2012

It is easy to make things complicated...

"It is easy to make things complicated, but genius make things simple and short."
This is what inspires Dinesh Kumar, another prolific writer of our city, whose latest book "Marketing Channels" has just been published by Oxford University Press. 
My inspiration for writing has always been how to make things or thoughts, which look complicated or difficult to grasp at one go, simple, short, and easy. 
My best time for writing is from 6am to 9am. I just go to my study, sit on the comfortable chair, and start writing. 

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Writing tips from an author

We spoke with Sangeet Sharma, an architect by profession, who has published six books including one of poetry, and is always bubbling with enthusiasm. Every time you meet him you can see that there is something brewing at the back of his mind, and at times creative flashes of his subconscious can be seen in his expressive eyes.
How do you get inspired to write? 
It is the journey of the writing which is so  inspiring. The commitment to the protagonist, the plot the streak of winning,  the unhindered imagination and the will to put on paper; the aspirations are so inspiring.  Moreover, many authors may deny, but all books are autobiographical to some extent. It is this thrill of putting into words the elements of personal experience which inspire you. 
Any specific moment when the streak of inspiration strikes you?
This inspiration can strike anytime. It could be In the middle of the night, at lunch, at work place, on while you are travelling and have time to think.  There is no fixed time and place for writing. The only longer time required on the desk is when I edit.

What is the best pose you strike before writing? 
I go straight on the computer and start writing. 

Well. What's your take on it? And what we are asking you is to write just 1000 words of short story, with clue to the story already there. Just click here for more details. 

Thursday, 7 June 2012

How did the great authors produce great books?

Different writers get inspired differently.  Here's a melange of tips one can pick up from some of the greatest writers of our times. What suits you?  Or how you get down to the business of writing...share with us. 
"Breakfast at Tiffany's" author Truman Capote would do his first draft in longhand using pencil while lying down on the bed or a couch with cigarette and coffee.  He won't leave his bed even while preparing the final draft balancing his typewriter on his knees. 
Though Ernest Hemingway was  known for his love for Bacchus but would never write while drunk. He was a regular writer and would pen at least 500 words every day. 
However for James Joyce that was not the criteria, who always was proud of and happy if he could write down just a few sentences in a day.  
Another famous American writer Philip Roth would walk half a mile for every page he wrote, and kept a separate studio to focus on his writings. 
Great novels like 'Lolita', 'Pale Fire' came from the pen of Vladimir Nabokov who would write on index cards so that he could arrange them in order to create the right sequence for his novels.  
Today there are numerous videos full of mathematical jugglery on creating a great story, the writing courses, and what not available online...but to my mind, the best way is what suits you the most. 
Most important, however, is to sit down, take a paper and a pen, and start doodling with your idea. And what's more, we have already given you a clue to start with. You have to finish it in another 900 words. Click here.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

It's not a ripple...but an Earthquake!

In an "Introduction to the 1997 Fish Anthology, Dog Days & Other Stories", the author, Joseph O’Connor, has great observation about the art of short story writing. What it can be? May be this would inspire few of the budding writers to try their hands on short story writing and send it across to CLS for the competition.  What O'Connor says is : 
"A short story is a glance at the miraculous. Joyce used a religious word. He called his stories ‘epiphanies’. A good short story is almost always about a moment of profound realization. Or a hint of that. A quiet bomb. There is a record by the American singer Tori Amos called Little Earthquakes. That’s a good metaphor for a short story. Often, a good short story will be a little earthquake."