Thursday, May 31, 2012

How about a sin tonight ?

Have you ever been in love withtwo people at the same time ? Have you ever hated so much that you wish tospray acid on their face and make their life as miserable as possible ? Haveyou ever loved so much that you write letters which you never dare to post ,and happily choose silence over confession ? Have you ever killed the personyou thought you LOVE D?
If you havent or even if you have , i will suggest you to read HOW ABOUT A SINTONIGHT.
From the best selling author of That kiss in the rain and A thing beyondforever.
Its a chilling tale of obsession , love , betrayal , vengeance , hatredand tragedy all at the same time.By the end of the novel you findyourself face to face with just one question "Is life /love really assimple as it seems or is it as intriguing as the lives of the 5 protagonist inthe novel" If not anywhere close to theirs , the novel will surely answeryour questions about the complexities of life and love.

While reading Shahraan and Mehfils story you can only help but wonder “Doessuch love truly exists in todays world.One as pure as theirs.?”
"What do you call a smile when it falls in love?"
"A tear drop"
Shahraan ali Bakshi who is in Bombay to become a super star meets Mehfil in asweet serendipity and several others follow , till they realise that thoughtheir love was forbidden their souls were interwined in a such a special waythat no worldly relation can define it.At the end of the day it was worth everyrisk.When Shahraan meets Reva , readers are forced to wonder if love truly canhappen twice or not , the answers to which one finds by the end of book 3"Whispers of a sin"
Reva and Neev , Complex.Very complex.Live in relationship and analmost open relationship . Their struggle from rags to riches is intriguing and a little heart wrenching as well.Funny what the dream city can do to you ! On their way they meet so many random people , who by the end of the story again turn out to play the most significant role in their life and that is absolutely wonderfully penned down.
Nishani Rai , the bitch at heart.If there are categories of bitches then she was a category in herself.When i first started reading"Cries of a sin" I hated Nishani more than anything , but by the endof book three "Whispers of a sin" i loved her more than anything.After all she was just a kid trying to understand the theory of Seperation and acceptance. "I dont care what others thing , but for methere couldnt be a happier ending.Me looking into my fathers eyes and saying"I love you" :')
The reason behind the entire mess up - Nishani Rai.Iwont reveal much and spoil your reading experience but understanding Nishaani'scharacter is a tough task to do.Trust me , she will make you wanna swear at herand then cry for her at the same time
And in the end , Kaash , the Sweetest and my favorite character. "Why doesn't sun come a lil closer to earth ? Cuz it knws a step forward nd it will burn the earth beyond sometimes distance is what is necessary to keep a relationship a relationship"From being a living paradox to a living example of what sacrifice truly is ,Kaash never fails to leave a smile on your face by his unexpected behavior.
The climax, as it turns out , is disturbing at a point and makes you swing between the pendulum of hatred and sympathy at the same time.Also throwing light upon the dark truth of the silver screen and the hogwash of the image a television artist and film star carries ,how about a sin tonight will certainly changes your opinion forever about the glamour and simple story we think bollywood is. If you are looking for some serious read and a page turner then How about a sin tonight is the book to go for.With some really good lesson to impart to everyone and also the complex questions about love and life , how about a sin tonight has every thing to fall in love with.I am not being biased , but seldom do I find myself praising a book so much.
I give it 4.5 stars out of 5 J
Happy reading people

Saturday, May 26, 2012

How do I fare "thee" well. ?

It has never crossed our mind what tomorrow will be like.Only yesterday i was talking to one of my friend abhilasha and it triggered such an intense feeling of nostalgia.It compelled me to think how i will bid adieu to my friends i made in high school ? Two years and we are  insperable.I dont really have many friends to start with.May be 7 .And sadly four of them are pure science students ! Daym it.Three of them are my classmates and are preparing for Corporate law , the same course that  i am preparing for.That being said  , i was wondering how will we ever relive the moments spent here ? How will we spend a day without giving each other a detailed account of how our day was ?
Conversations which usually started with "Abey kamine".Laughters and tears , the two impression of every expression,where will we get the deja senti again ? This feeling and unrest streaks within me every time a timeline is completed.Last time i found myself pondering upon this topic  was when i passed standard 10th.Two years later i seem to have known quiet too much about life and relations and guess what ? I am yet to know too much about it.I have realised that goodbyes will always hurt.Photographs wont replace the feeling of being there , being with them , the only thing that will be static will be the fact that we once shared the most treasured memories of our life.
From now on what happens , no memory will be strong enough to replace the memories of these two years.The fact that in all probabilities all of my best friends will be in different cities or different countries as a matter of fact  , is making this goodbye more emotional.
May be tomorrow we will be in contact via Im's , BBM , GMAIL , FB etc. But certainly they wont replace the million dollar smile which lightened up our mood  and adorned our face when we greeted our best buddies with the slangs.Tomorrow may be we will make 100s of new college friends.Friends who will know what we are,but certainly wont have any idea , why we are so.
The Rat race has already started. Excel in boards , excel in CLAT , Crack AIEE , IITJEE , AIPMT etc etc.And when you get there you find out to ur utter surprise that the race has just begun. The race for becoming the best amongst the rest.Do we even know whats waiting for us ? A world which is more demanding , more callous . A life with no second chances but with make it or break it situations. When we're done with this rat race , the main race begins. The race for surviving in this world,  to earn a living , to settle down with the most elligible partner,have a well furnished house , a ferrari in the parking lot , best electronic gadgets and amazing foreign tours.No doubt most of us get most of the above mentioned luxuries but only at the cost of the little joys of life. Pocket money will change into salary , friends into acquiantance.leisure would then mean going out to some club for playing pool rather than going on a scooty drive on the airport road with our best buddies.
Somewhere we will miss the innumerable excuses we made to attend a party , while we will be stopping our kids from staying out late at night.We will miss the late night telephonic conversations about every crap possible.How we threw up after tasting alchohol for the first time,how we saved money to buy that ONE dress which we had set eye upon.How we managed to have the best quality food at a cost of rs 50. While we will continue to live in the present a part of us will certainly dwell in the past thinking about how it was back then.The rainfall will remind me of how i used to call up my friends and we used to go on endlessly about how romantic the weather is.Every message or ping on BBM will somewhere make us yearn that it is from some distant long lost friend.
I know its hypothetical because coming days we will be too busy to even think about these things . but sometime we will think about the plans we used to make , every dream we shared , every wish which remained unfulfilled, every smile we cherished , every tear we wiped away , there will automatically be a smile on our face and we will just utter "I miss those days man ! I really do" Someday we will visit tthe place again , look at the large gate , the chairs and the blackboard,the secret hangout spots and what not.I will miss the screams of joy , the feeling of togetherness , the feeling of having people to fall back upon , people whom i will never see again in the coming 5 years or may be all my life , probably the people who matter the most , a smile will follow along with two teardrops for sure.
This is just a note , to thank all those people who have made me what i am today.A promise to find solace in the memories , to keep in touch , to cherish the lost childhood and take a nostalgic odessey of the old good days every time i am vexed.
We may be parting our ways today , but i am sure somewhere in some far off place i will recognize your face..I wont say goodbye my friend..for you and i..Will meet again :)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The publishing industry and the dark truth

Ravinder singh , Novoneel chakraborty , Durjoy Dutta , Sudeep Nagarkar are the names which have dominated the Indian book market in the recent time. They started with Srishti, (which was also called the KING of the publishing world) once upon a time.

I remember how I and many other aspiring authors dreamt of getting published with Srishti. But dear friends, it’s ALL ABOUT TIME.

The big names have finally terminated  the contracts and have moved out..Its reputation is hitting an all time low. And the once awesome distribution of Srishti is better if not talked about.
I talked to some authors and I came to know that Srishti gives no Royalty figure (which is Rs 5 / book.) and no sales figure. Published authors don’t even get reply to their mails inquiring about their sales figure. Disappointing. The only option they are left with is to move out and publish with some good publishing house.

Now the question arises where will the new authors go?

Harper Collins, grey oak, penguin are distant dream for new authors. The funniest thing, I have come across while reading the “Publish with us” section of some xyz big publishing house. Who writes like this? If you are already published with Rupa, Penguin or you are famous journalist, then submit your script otherwise we won’t look at your script. I remember very well that when they opened their publishing house, they had the vision to give voice to new talented authors but with the passage of time, they have lost their vision. Writing such condition before submitting is a clear indicator of that. Even Harper and Penguin don’t put their criteria like this. Funnily enough. Obviously they want classy writing style, which most of the new authors don’t have. Therefore they are left with no choice but to fall prey to the Indian publishing houses that have a bad monopoly. They don’t spend a penny on promotion. Author has to do everything. I heard that too if an author’s doesn’t promote book well, then Srishti doesn’t give importance to that mail, deliberately avoids his/her mails and never replies to his/her query. Moreover they don’t have editors.

If you have read Srishti's books then you must’ve noticed the conspicuous grammatical errors. Sometimes its irritating to spot a mistake in every second sentence a novice writes.

Another factor which contributes massively towards the increasing monopoly of this house is the Indian mentality. Readers are ready to spend 200 bucks for ridiculous movies like houseful 2. Or else they always look for friend’s copies or ask authors to give him/her a free copy, if he/she is a friend of the author, but they will purchase only that book which cost 100 or 125 maximum.

Obviously the authors are "once common people" who did have the same mentality. They know if the cost exceeds Rs 100 , their book won’t become a best seller anytime soon. So they contact cheap publishing houses. Now this is where the exploitation starts.

Which includes forcing writers to write intimate scenes. (They know this sells well...), not replying to their mails once they get published, not giving the actual sales figure and much more. No doubt some of the biggest publishing houses are on the brink of collapse (if you know which PH I mean) The Indian book industry somehow runs on how many intimate scene a book has to offer. Most of the books are a replica of the dirty picture. Modernization is good, but to the point where love is not confused with lust. Funnily enough we have modernized so much that lets say if the name of the book is "Love story" we buy it keeping in mind it is a "Lust story". Frankly speaking I guess somewhere this is what most of the aspiring authors have to offer. Or let’s say they are FORCED to offer...A lil bit of decency please? Let’s say our new honchos try to copy Jackie Collins somehow or the other, missing out on the decency part. Most of the books are lost amidst the huge cabinets of books with identical names, mushy lines from Hindi movies, little or No classic literature and Romantic and poignant scenes stolen from English movies, which somehow fail to weave the same magic ...Because if it sells, it is ought to be a bestseller..Again...Did I miss, we live in a country where a best seller is determined by the number of copies it sells and not the number of lived it effects?

With all the famous authors moving out , who made it what it is today ,  Srishti is left with the memories of being the once king of the publishing world. Their monopoly had increased too much so that they sent books only on order by stores. Their once famous promotion and distribution is now what no author dreams of at least for his first book.

But with Srishti on the brink of collapse I am sure there are so many dreams at stake as well. Most of the big publishing houses don’t give a chance to the newbee's. You can kill yourself waiting for a reply from penguin or Rupa or Harper Collins but I can assure you about the very fact that there isn’t a chance they will introduce a new debutant author in the market like they introduce a Chetan Bhagat book. No I am not being biased, but the simple point which I want to throw light upon is "Why give so much of importance to someone who is already at his careers best? Why not give a chance to the struggling authors who despite of having ample talent, potential and determination have to face disappointment only because they are NEWBEE's ?

Is this what we preach in a country where "Equality" is considered to be an important component of the constitution?

Even if you get selected I can assure you they won’t give you the much needed exposure. They will promote only those books which come from the kitty of best selling authors. End result = like in India rich are becoming richer and poor are becoming poorer, in the book industry, the already famous are becoming more famous and richer (with 8% and 10% royalty and 50k advance: if what I heard is true). The publishers like Srishti,  of royalty with no advance. While the struggling writers keep on struggling and hoping that someday they will be recognized worldwide for their talent.

Yesterday night I was talking to a friend of mine who is a bestselling author, told me that he always gets one-third less royalty than what he expects. Yes. Another reason why Srishti is on the brink of collapse is their unprofessional behaviour.They say "Its all about fame..And not the MONEY" . What’s the problem in paying right amount? They should remember that they make money by selling these author’s copies.

While writers outside India are earning millions, Indian authors hardly get the royalty due. Who is to be blamed? It is for you to decide. Another need of the hour is certainly good editors.

Some books instead of having grammatical mistakes ,so conspicuous, make up to the best sellers list. I am yet to figure out how. With all due respect.

I will leave you here and let you decide where the Indian book industry is treading. If you find out the answer you are most welcome to share your views.

Again I am just another Indian who is using her Freedom of expression under article 19 20 21 and 22.Happy reading..Happy thinking..