Wednesday, February 19, 2014


I have been pacing the house this morning. It happens sometimes...alright, it happens only when I haven't written anything worthwhile in a while. I was on vacation and was editing/proofreading Bootie and the Beast, getting it ready for release and stuff. Those are legit excuses for NOT WRITING. And I was catching up on my reading. Sadly, that has only inflamed my desire to write a bloody good book that I would love to read. I'm not going to mention the books that have irked me so...this post isn't about dissing. It's about conflict.
Ha! The axis of a/any story. Conflict with a capital C. Conflict is what spices up a plot. What drives the characters forward, backward or sideways. What makes the story spin until it dazzles you...the reader...and you feel as if you're watching The Christmas Spectacular from Row A of Radio City Music Hall.
My personal conflict today is that I have 2 plots bursting like firecrackers in my head. 2 very different plots for 2 very different stories. 
Plot 1 will have me continue my work-in-progress about a trio of soul mates and some self-denial.
Plot 2 is a brand new idea of a soul seeking redemption, finding it and then rejecting it.
My conflict? Which one do I work on first. And whichever one I do pick, will the other suffer from my neglect. Argh. This is why multiple personalities should be the norm and not the exception.
Any and all advice appreciated, Peeps.
(gif source: random search on internet)

Friday, February 14, 2014


Dear Reader, in lieu of chocolates, here's an excerpt from my much-awaited Bootie and the Beast. Expected release date, sometime in April 2014.

“Want to unpack first or eat or shower?” Krish asked, poking a hole in her fantasy dialogue.

Diya shook her head, as much to clear it as to say no. She was so tired and functioning on sheer force of will, hence the spontaneous daydreaming. It had been a crazy, busy few months and the last two days had sort of bled her energy levels dry. If she was indeed the vampire the tabloid twerp had painted her as, she’d be snoring inside her coffin after having gorged on a blood-filled vein.

“I’ll get to it tomorrow—the unpacking and showering. I’m hungry. I’m sleepy. And I’m sure you need to get back to your office and resume snarling at figures of the numerical and human variety.” Diya strolled into the bedroom alongside Krish.
“Not really.” He slanted an undecipherable look her way. “I’ve taken the day off.”
“Oh! Don’t be silly. You don’t have to baby-sit me.” She flapped a hand at him. “Go to your office, play with your spreadsheets. Punch some numbers. Whatever. I’ll be fine.”
Krish was a Menon to the hilt—the hardest of taskmaster’s. He hated losing work-hours and became an intolerable grouch when he did. It was a testament to his regard for her father that he’d taken the afternoon off to fetch her from the airport in person and not sent a cab. To be fair, he’d sent a cab only the once to pick up his family during a visit a few years ago, due to some emergency at the office. Lee-sha and Savitri Aunty hadn’t made a big deal about that kind of deficient host behavior. Diya wasn’t so forgiving. Family should always come first. But, she was fair as well. He’d settled her in, now he could go.
“I’m not working today, Diya,” he said, in near exasperation.
Oh-kay. She’d heard what she’d heard, not once but twice. Diya checked Krish’s forehead, cheek and throat with the back of her hand. “Nope, no fever. You could be delirious. Low sugar, possibly. Or,” she paused for dramatic effect. “You were kidnapped by a UFO and are now an alien in Krish form.”
He chucked her under her chin. “Smart-ass. Come along, Elf, let me introduce you to your domain—the kitchen.” With a sly smile, he strode away.
She stuck her tongue out at his chauvinist backside but didn’t take umbrage, not when he clearly teased and when it was patently true. It was no secret she loved to cook. Besides, his previous statement trumped all other concerns for her.
She rushed behind him, heels clattering smartly on the wooden floor of the hallway. “I’m confused. Since when do you take days off?”
The Krish Menon she knew did not take days off. He worked twelve to fourteen hour days on most days, sometimes even on Sunday. Work was his religion, numbers were his mantras and profits, projections and spreadsheets were his portals to nirvana. He thrived as a beast of burden.
And as if that confession of sloth wasn’t shocking enough what he said next made Diya trip on the steps leading down to the kitchen and crash into his back.
“What?” she gasped, clutching his arms for support when he spun around to steady her.
Nary a smile or sneer darkened the alien in Krish form. “I have a date. It’s Valentine’s Day, after all.”

Thursday, February 13, 2014



To me, fair friend, you never can be old, For as you were when first your eye I eyed,Such seems your beauty still. Three winters cold Have from the forests shook three summers' pride,Three beauteous springs to yellow autumn turn'd In process of the seasons have I seen, Three April perfumes in three hot Junes burn'd,Since first I saw you fresh, which yet are green.(Sonnet 104) 

It was a lover and his lass, With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,That o’er the green corn-field did pass,In the spring time, the only pretty ring time,When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding;Sweet lovers love the spring.(As You Like It, 5.3.15-20)

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, 
And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade 
Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou growest: 
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, 
So long lives this and this gives life to thee.


The childing autumn, angry winter, changeTheir wonted liveries, and the mazed world,By their increase, now knows not which is which.(A Midsummer Night's Dream, 2.1.116-118) 

The teeming autumn, big with rich increase,

Bearing the wanton burden of the prime,Like widow'd wombs after their lords' decease.(Sonnet 97, 6-8) 

Thou knowest, winter tames man, woman, and beast.

When icicles hang by the wall
And Dick the shepherd blows his nail
And Tom bears logs into the hall 
And milk comes frozen home in pail, 
When blood is nipp'd and ways be foul,
Then nightly sings the staring owl, 
Tu-who, a merry note, 
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.
When all aloud the wind doth blow 
And coughing drowns the parson's saw 
And birds sit brooding in the snow 
And Marian's nose looks red and raw, 
When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl, 
Then nightly sings the staring owl, 
Tu-who, a merry note, 
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.
(Love's Labour's Lost, 5.2.916-31)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


I love reading. I always have, I always will. I've read my share (and possibly shares of eighty seven other individuals) of books in my life. Not all the books I read make me weep with joy at having read them. I understand and have experienced (far too often) that not all books will speak to my soul. But the last two that I read, that I'm reading, have left me completely their awfulness. To the extent that I spent two days wondering what the hell was the matter with the writers of said books, the publishers and editors of said books and finally the readers of said books...myself excluded.

I picked the novels up in India. Both are adaptations of the Mahabharata, an epic close to my heart, and the only reason I bought the books in the first place. The authors had nothing more to do than rework an old legend on a new-ish premise with a fresh spin. Sadly, both books failed miserably to do any kind of reworking, remolding or my eyes. And I was outraged by their utterly cavalier disregard for good writing.

Notice I said WAS. I am over my outrage. And here's why.

I've realized in my forty-eight hour pout which began with the almost desperate need to grab a pointy, sharp blade from the knife block in the kitchen, flying non-stop to India, hunting down the publishers, editors and authors of said books and hacking them to pieces for destroying this beautiful legend that is the Mahabharata with their rubbish. The murderous urge ended in an anticlimactic, self-induced opening-of-the-eye. 

I have realized since that a successful book need not be good. More astonishingly, a "good" book need not be well-written. And even more astonishingly, my parameters for a successful book, good book and well-written book could be the exact opposite of yours. What I consider good or well-written or successful is but my own opinion of it. Of course, best-seller lists and awards do validate certain books. But here's the thing. Some of those great books on those best-seller lists have not appealed to me in the least! And we all know of a certain atrociously penned trilogy that broke best-selling records not two years past.

So, there goes the theory that a good book should have universal appeal. 

That being said, isn't it the duty of the author, the publishing house and the editor to provide its reader with the best possible product?

I am so confused. What do you think? To each book his own worm?
(Source of gifs: random search on Internet)