[Writing is] like driving a car at night: you never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.
Described as one of the most important American novelists of the 20th century, Edgar Lawrence Doctorow (January 6, 1931 – July 21, 2015) was the author of several critically acclaimed novels including Ragtime, Billy Bathgate, The March, Homer & Langley, and The Book of Daniel. Known for placing his fictional characters in recognizable historical contexts, often alongside characters based on historical figures, Doctorow was the recipient of numerous awards including the National Book Award, three National Book Critics Circle Awards, and two PEN Faulkner Awards. He also taught at several colleges and universities, including Sarah Lawrence College and New York University.
If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it.
Elmore Leonard (born October 11, 1925) packed his popular westerns and crime thrillers with gritty details and realistic dialogue—no surprise, then, that many of his stories were made into blockbuster movies with Hollywood’s biggest stars. Think 3:10 to Yuma, Hombre, Valdez Is Coming, Get Shorty, Out of Sight, and Jackie Brown (a Quentin Tarantino adaptation of Rum Punch). Even before he was in the spotlight, though, Leonard—as a fifth grader in Detroit—wrote a play inspired by the book All Quiet on the Western Front.
4 June 2013 ·
He bought me some coloured glass bangles
From the local, weekly Haat.
He bought me some saffron
And, a garland strewn with blood red marigolds.
We had some chai-
Sweetened by fragrant memories
Of days spent in the past,
Amidst golden hues of sunlit passions-
And, silvery moonbeam blasts!
I love stories! I love listening to stories, love viewing them on 35 mm/TV, love reading about them, in the printed word. I search for them in every nook and corner, now and then, they are the true, real loves of my life! And, where do I find them? Do I find them in hi brow clubs, in shams like stinking rich weddings, and birthday parties, in boutique anniversary dinners and corporate tete-é-tetes, in celebrations where food and money are wasted like everyone has aplenty!
No, I find them in nooks and crannies, in forgotten photographs of unknown faces even, of uncles, aunts and their not so conventional friends, on my maid's face every morning after she emerges out from the lethal chains that sap her humanity and womanhood at night, from the continuous chirping of birds defying summer, in my niece's growing up years strangely reminding me of my own, in the non-stop banalities surrounding me every day, in the semi constructed house beside mine, giving a new feel, still replete in cement, with branches full of green leaves waving over them quietly in the scorching heat of the angry summer sun, in the public water tanks, amongst the chatter of people who die every day in the secure confines of their homes but come alive when they come to collect water, fight, discipline, and catch up with one another!
Stories, lie hidden in the sweat and glaze on the rickshaw pullers, in the old harmonium shop, amidst all the unwell instruments, in the local phuchka wala who can't promise 'phaus' anymore, in the xerox machines which don't work half of the time, in the snack stalls which offer every dish you can think of, and dish out stuff quite unthinkable, in the small gift and stickers shop, where none of the stickers have any gum left in them, and quite surprisingly in the cawing of the crows asking me about my day......
I meet stories, in the seedy barber shop where the barber cuts less hair and sweeps away more and more hair every day, trying to garner some cheap and valuable publicity, in the mango orchard of my neighbour who always keeps his gate locked, in the little raw mangoes that adorn his trees, and I thank The Lord that I get to see them at least!
The dosawala, who turns up every monday evening, and refuses to take my suggestions on how he can earn more, the local medical shops, their proprietors, and assistants, unique and peculiar in their daily roles, get ups et al, but clinging to cheap jokes if they find one, sometimes even at my expense, informing me with deadpan faces, that they have sent back the food I bought and kept on their table while ordering my meds, hand me down my daily dose of unique stories, in unison.
I'm completely outnumbered by stories, in the warmth, surprises and chivalry of meeting ex colleagues/friends after a long time and being pampered to the extent that it makes wondrous memories of real life past incidents, in the taxi walas at the stand who make every possible face to avoid budging unless it's a ride to outer space of course!
Each, of these characters and situations offer such a variety/plethora/motley stream of stories! I enjoy little chats with my neighbourhood cobbler, veg.seller with a mobile to boot, and my tailor, they fill me with so much love, life and peace, that I can follow my passion free of cost in the most unexpected of places, amidst ordinary people, in the most inadventurous ways, that I never stop marvelling at myself, my home, my neighbourhood, people I meet, my teachers, my students, and most interestingly YOU, my READERS! 👌😎
I re-emerge at night, from the bindings of the day's rigmarole, I breathe in the dark. The night cloaks my being and wraps me up in the embalming silence of its innate essence, it soothes, calms, and caresses me into all the goodness I have tried to sow all through the day, it gives wings to my spirit and assures of life and its expanse. I tread into blissful territory at night with the buzz of the fan in my room, the high voltage neon in the street outside, the dogs barking, the odd car passing and yet the night is overwhelming, it puts to rest wicked wretched thoughts, evil ugly people, it bridges the gap by co existing in peace. I long to travel up in the sky, amongst the stars and into space understanding the galaxies that cradle the planets in watchful unison, I smile, I have an overview of all that I long to touch in the broad daylight! I spy into my soul and swim in my mother's amniotic fluid once more happy and babbling gurgling and breaking into the deeper recesses of my otherwise troubled soul, I touch the limits of sanity in the midst of stars that are dead but still adorn the sky somewhat. I wait for snippets, images from forgotten late night movies and undefined dinners with fake souls traversing as genuine ones, and I absorb them in my mind's scrap book never to let them go. What, am I seeking, who am I, in this vast expansive arrangement. Who is my creator, who am I creating, what is my life's purpose, every otherthought flows into my consciousnessand bequeaths me with unknown wonders and torn dreams, sunshiny meadows and erupting volcanoes form a carpet of my existence, they are not in conflict, they are in harmony, in silence they blossom and acquire meanings unforetold in the day's usual humdrum, I am myself, and I remain, in happiness, and in restrain I gather my life and move on to other realms of multiple realities, they all float in together and exchange notes in happy chatter, and ucanny refrains!
“Novels provide readers with something to read. At their best writers change the way readers read. That seems to me the only realistic expectation. It also seems to me quite enough. Reading novels is a deep and singular pleasure, a gripping and mysterious human activity that does not require any more moral or political justification than sex.” —Philip Roth
When, your Soulmate's Daughter writes, and reminds you of her!
My Dear Darling Rosh/Roshni,
I am amazed, surprised, proud, happy, and so pleased, I can’t express aptly how I feel, exactly! You, have a blog. Though, you let me in just now, and not before, right at the beginning, I’m still so thrilled! You, have taken after your Mom I can see, she too writes extremely well, primarily because she’s also angelic as a person……well, you may not agree with me now, for obvious reasons, but let me tell you, your mom is the most divine, accepting, liberal, non-judgemental human being I’ve ever met in my life, that’s precisely why she’s my bestest pal, even to this day. Sorry, this is your blog and I’m glorifying your mommy here, but actually I want to congratulate you on your beautiful and enlightened journey as a writer, while reiterating the fact that you have no idea whatsoever how much you remind me of your mom! Your, name ‘Roshni’ means light, and what better way to express and spread your glow than write? I too, love to write, I always have! Just, that at my age I’m more cynical and morbid. But, reading you is so refreshing, reminds me of my youth too! You, must not accept anything blindly in this life. You should never hesitate to question anything, and not just stereotypes, each and everything that comes to your notice! I wish you sunshine, and clarity. I wish you courage and health, and prosperity. I wish you love, warmth and understanding. I wish you the WORLD, Roshni! I’m following your blog now……..and, looking forward to give you company in your wonderful journey of experiences, which you share with us, and I’m also inviting the whole world to move in with us…..the crystal clear freshness in your beautiful writes will inspire so many others to pen in their thoughts, and the more we write, we express, we share…..and, the more we share, the more oxygen we breathe in, holding hands, heralding changes leading not to ‘perfection’, as who’s to decide what is perfection, but to speak out, question, share and engage in conversations worth our while, for what good is living, if we’re not interacting with each other, discussing and debating, accepting and adapting, living and encouraging others to follow suite. Live, and let live……remember, the best chefs in the country, and overseas are all MEN! Amen.
Get, in touch with your higher self, it's true bliss! <3
As, a writer I do have loads to write, mostly drawn from my own personal experiences, BUT sometimes I feel scared to revisit the painful experiences, and that is when I tamper with my own skills.......revisiting any experience, and writing about it is stressful, and if it's a hurtful one, then it's unbearable............so, what does a writer do, how can she overcome this!