Writing Guide

Hi Readers!

Today, I am going to introduce a series on my blog known as – The Writing Guide or TWG. This will cover my expertise as a writer and maybe, other experts to write and give you tips once I get to convince them to participate. If you are a writer and have tips to share, please get in touch with me through my contact page.

If you are as lazy as me, here is the contact detail – sucheta dot scribbles at gmail dot com

I am open to suggestions. The more the merrier.

🙂

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Rabindranath Tagore : Quotes That Stay With You

“Bundesarchiv Bild 102-01073, Rabindranath Tagore” by Bundesarchiv, Bild 102-01073 / Georg Pahl / CC-BY-SA. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 de via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bundesarchiv_Bild_102-01073,_Rabindranath_Tagore.jpg#/media/File:Bundesarchiv_Bild_102-01073,_Rabindranath_Tagore.jpg

Let your life lightly dance on the edges of Time like dew on the tip of a leaf.


Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is still dark.


It is very simple to be happy, but it is very difficult to be simple.


I have spent my days stringing and unstringing my instrument while the song I came to sing remains unsung.


Man goes into the noisy crowd to drown his own clamor of silence.


When old words die out on the tongue, new melodies break forth from the heart; and where the old tracks are lost, new country is revealed with its wonders.

A Tale Of Two Brothers – R.K.Narayan And R.K.Laxman

NOTE: I know you all must be confused as to why I am posting old posts now? Well, these are posts from my erstwhile blog (sounds so royal) and I have had people read them last year. But to my new readers, these are fresh posts and I don’t want them to miss out on any book related posts 🙂 So I will be re-posting random blogs, which some of you might have already read.


Today, 10th October happens to be the birthday of one of the most prominent literary figures in India – R.K.NarayanI am pretty sure that if you grew up studying in an English medium school, you couldn’t  possibly have escaped his stories in the curriculum. Or at the very least, you couldn’t have missed watching Malgudi days on TV and going through stories so wonderfully penned by him.

I can also proudly say that Indian literature in English would be incomplete without his contributions. From what I have read of his works and remember, his prose was simple. I think he was a keen observer and this very fact reflected in his characters. Even a small character in his stories or novel, left an impression on you. His books were my constant companions and I borrowed and re-borrowed them from my school library, hiding them in between my textbooks and reading them voraciously. It was compulsory to write book reviews of any book borrowed and I gleefully penned my thoughts in immature style, thinking of stepping into his shoes one fine day! 😉

If what I am writing doesn’t make any sense to you, read his Malgudi Days and Swami and Friends. Highly recommended. This will give you the hang of his writing style and you can then proceed to pick up his other works from the nearest bookstore. Here is a video of Malgudi Days, which was aired on TV. The music gives me goosebumps because of the high nostalgia content!!!

The house that R.K.Narayan was born in, also saw another genius (albeit of a different kind) in his younger brother – R.K.Laxman. He will be celebrating his 93rd birthday on 24th October. This powerhouse of talent is one of the most popular cartoonists in India. Long back, I read an interview about him. I remember that he likes the Ambassador car and the crow is his favourite bird. Many of his doodles have crows and brilliantly portrayed at that! Read more about his fascination with the bird here. He also doodled illustrations for his brother’s books. Talk about collaboration 😀

Image Source: Wikipedia

Image Source: Wikipedia

His creation of The Common Man gave a glimpse of political satire and political humor or simply humor in general. A common feature in the national daily, the creation was also a part of a current tele-series. Here is the YouTube video of the series based on his Common Man.

The day I began reading the newspaper, I started with the Common Man cartoon ‘You Said It’ printed on the very first page. Only then did I proceed to read the headlines and the inner pages. At first, I couldn’t make the heads and tails of what is this guy trying to convey! Gradually, the satires started making sense. In brief, I have grown up with his creation and got my lessons in politics from the same. Because the topics depicted in them were all based on the current issues, my G.K. was also quite up to date. Thankyou Mr. Laxman! 🙂

Wishing these two geniuses a very happy birthday 🙂

Utterly Nonsensical Reasons Why I Refuse To Read Some Books After Page 1

NOTE: I know you all must be confused as to why I am posting old posts now? Well, these are posts from my erstwhile blog (sounds so royal) and I have had people read them last year. But to my new readers, these are fresh posts and I don’t want them to miss out on any book related posts 🙂 So I will be re-posting random blogs, which some of you might have already read.


Dear Writers Of Books I Wanted To Read But Couldn’t,

I am a reader. I want to be an voracious reader once more and I do have the potential in my bones you know. But I can’t. I can’t just go beyond page #1 even though I try hard to !!!! I will not blame you because I do understand. This is why, it is I who is on the wrong side of things. The reasons are nonsensical.

The names seem fake: Some authors (I won’t reveal) love naming their characters as if they are going to name their future brood of kids. Exotic names. Really really exotic names. Now it can be understood that some names do suit the character and the setting. But puhleeeseee….sometimes they just stick out like a purple tongue. Okay, if the name is short and fairly simple, I can still proceed a bit. But lengthy names with cropped idiotic shortened nicknames…I am sorry. I can’t relate to your story at all.

Beating round the bush: Of late, I tend to close a book the moment I find that the author is doing nothing but beating round the bush. Unnecessarily. I read this book in train while going to Chennai and because I had no other backup option to entertain me, I had to struggle through it. The author was just going on and on about things that kicked me into a different universe every now and then. Bumpy ride. Ouch!! Brain-hurt alert!!

Bad endings: I am kind by nature. I happen to finish some books if I really go beyond page 1 through 30. Only to find that the author has stabbed me at the back with his/her pen ruthlessly. How? By penning a bad ending. Not cliffhanger kind of endings you see. But confusing, meaningless endings. Sometimes the endings seem to be torn out of a totally different book! What hurts more is that I lose hope of reading another book of the same type in the future.

Desperate Indian writers: Taking a cue from one of the so called bestselling authors, some Indian writers have totally gone berserk in churning out “Bestsellers” or you can say, cheap novels that cost about a hundred INR or so. I occasionally pick one or two up out of curiosity and to check how similar they are in terms of plot line and language. They never disappoint me. These are the books, I gladly give away to Fans of such Literature. Here is an article that will speak more than I can in ten such write-ups.

Not doing justice to the genre: A crime novella that looks more like an Indian daily soap’s sob story. A horror story that tickles the funny bone on a dark and stormy night. A story about bromance without any signs of the same. A supernatural creature novel that gives you goosebumps and cold sweats by thinking how could this trash get published. Brr….

Parting note –  I have taught school kids of grade 3 and 4. They are better writers.

The Fangirl Tag

Image Source: Pixabay

Image Source: Pixabay

I came across this lovely blog of Kayleigh and I am all up for her Fangirl Tag. So, here I go ahead with the tag. Enjoy the read and feel free to use the tag and post 🙂


1. First Person I ever obsessed over?

I think it must be Alan Rickman. He was so perfect as Snape. A role, he carried out with great elan.

2. Current obsession?

Marvel’s Daredevil is my current obsession. It is just so sleek. I love the concept totally.

3. Favourite band?

Nothing specific. I listen to very few songs to be honest. I like Paramore, Linkin Park, Snow Patrol, The Rasmus etc. to name a few.

4. Favourite singer?

I have a lot of favourites. Currently, I love Agnes Obel for singing the Riverside. I also love Katy Perry, she is just different and recently, I listened to Rose Lambert’s Secrets and have been a fan ever since 🙂

5. Favourite YouTuber?

No one in particular. I use YouTube for reliving my childhood in the 90’s 🙂

6. First concert?

A college fest. That’s it. Not a fan of crowdy places.

7. Favourite movie?

There are so many……gah! I will name a few.

Hachiko

Freaky Friday

The Conjuring

Rang De Basanti

Maid of Honor

and the list will go on….and on…. 😉

8. Favourite actor/actress?

Irfan Khan and Chris Pratt and Tom Hiddleston and Jim Parsons and Benedict Cumberbatch and Michael Huisman and Kit Harington and Pedro Pascal…

Lena Headley and Kaley Cucco and Rose Leslie…..

This has to stop. I like a lot of people. :-p

9. First celebrity crush?

No one in particular. I loved Launchpad though. From Ducktales. Because he is just so awwwwww-dorable 😀

10. Ever got made fun of for what I like?

Yes. But then, people have their choices and I have mine. I don’t mind really.

11. Favourite book?

A Thousand Splendid Suns and Harry Potter Series. The two frontrunners of a huge list.

12. Favourite TV show?

Game Of Thrones and Grey’s Anatomy. I also love Full House. And also, a huge fan of Big Bang Theory!

13. Favourite fictional character?

Fred and George. Period.

All characters from GOT.

14. Something I love about a fandom I’m in?

Dragons. Direwolves. Dorne. I love these in Game of Thrones. It is very interesting a series and I can’t get enough of it.

15. Something I hate about a fandom I’m in?

Game of Thrones – Almost everyone gets killed. 😦

16. Would you ever take a bullet for the people I fangirl over?

No. Plain no. 😉 I want to live my life and enter more fandoms 🙂

17. Do I ever hide the fact that I like someone out of fear of getting teased?

No. Everyone knows who I Fangirl over 🙂

18. Have I ever met any of my idols?

Hell no 😦 But I would want to!!

19. Do I have any merchandise of the people I fangirl over?

A few. Not of people, but series. I often give them away to friends who would want them more.

20. Favourite fangirl moment?

Everytime I flip through a book I love or watch a show online and on TV, I have my fangirl moment. 🙂

Twitter Trend #TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter

Image Source: Pixabay

Image Source: Pixabay

I got a ping from a co-worker about this new Twitter trend- #TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter.

I jumped the bandwagon because…I am a writer and I have a say in this. When I went on to Tweet my opinion(s), I found there were already many known and unknown (to me) writers, who had some of the most amazing and witty 140 characters published online.

This is what I vented.

These are what others had to say:

#TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter “It must be nice making money at a hobby.”

— Melodie Ramone (@Melodie_Ramone)


“I’m sure writing it won’t take longer than 30 minutes.”#TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter

— Mina V. Esguerra (@minavesguerra) 


Are you a writer? I hope your spouse earns well.


Told a teen I write YA. She hadn’t heard of me. Said, “It would have been so cool if you were Suzanne Collins!”


“You’re pretty good. You should try writing something serious.”


What’s your backup career plan? I hear your industry is dying


Have I ever heard of you?


“But are you, like, a REAL writer?”


“Can I be in your novel?” You probably are. You’re the one who dies horribly.


“You’re lucky you don’t have to work.”


“I have a great idea for a book. I just have to write it down.”


“I would totally write a novel if I had as much free time as you do. I have so many ideas.”


You know what you should write about? I have the best idea for you.


Oh, you write? I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I’m too busy doing (insert “important” thing here), though.


I really like your work! Will you write for us? Oh, we don’t pay


Isn’t EVERYONE a writer, essentially?


When I retire I’m going to write a book, too.


My life is a film, you should write it. #TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter

— Nia Vardalos (@NiaVardalos) 


#TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter “I don’t understand why your house is so messy. You have so much free time.”

— Melodie Ramone (@Melodie_Ramone)


“oh my husband’s half-brother’s cousin’s cat writes poems, maybe you guys can collaborate” #TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter


Can you get me published?


Give us writers a break please. We need no such gems coming being showered from all directions. Thankyou very much.

14 Lessons That I Picked Up From My Copywriting Course

I have been busy pursuing a short term copy writing course in my city. The idea was to refresh my knowledge and to learn something new. I am almost about to wrap up the course and I want to share some key takeaways, mostly the quotes by David Ogilvy, which have inspired me.

  1. The best ideas come as jokes. Make your thinking as funny as possible. David Ogilvy
  2. Talent, I believe, is most likely to be found among nonconformists, dissenters, and rebels. David Ogilvy
  3. On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar. – David Ogilvy
  4. When you reach for the stars, you might not quite get one, but you won’t come up with a handful of mud either. – Leo Burnett
  5. Resist the usual. – Raymond Rubicam
  6. Sometimes the most important job advertising can do, is to clarify the obvious. Jay Chiat
  7. A word after a word after a word is power. — Margaret Atwood
  8. The client will always pick the concept that you like the least, so never present any concepts you don’t like – Robert Fleege
  9. Any copy that runs on a billboard should fit on the back of a business card. – John Pavao, Clearchannel Outdoor
  10. Copy is a direct conversation with the consumer.  – Shirley Polykoff
  11. The first draft of anything is shit. —Ernest Hemingway
  12. The most powerful element in advertising is the truth. – William Bernbach
  13. Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell and advertise. – Ted Turner
  14. Nobody reads ads. People read what interests them. Sometimes it’s an ad. – Howard Gossage

When It Rains, It Pours Words

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Yesterday evening was a moment of rejoice, as it rained in the city. After a dry spell, the pour was much awaited by one and all, even a rain hater like me. Even though I had my raincoat game all good, I drove around 6-7 kilometres in the light, breezy shower without wearing one.

I haven’t been blogging regularly for days, maybe weeks. But now, I think I have a lot of inspiration and yap yappings all around me to observe and jot down. It is also my official reading season, when I curl up on the bed or swing with a hot cuppa coffee and my books strewn all over the place.

Happy Monsoon and Happy Reading. When it rains, it surely pours words 🙂

Beginner’s Luck: 7 Books To Have In Your Collection When You Start Reading

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Reading is a hobby that gives joy second to none. More often than not, beginner level readers are clueless as to how they can build up their book collection or which books should they start reading first. Here is a new series in my blog – Beginner’s Luck and I will start with a list of 7 books that every beginner should have in their collection.

  1. Classic: There are so many classics out there that you will surely be spoilt for choices. However, in my opinion, you can settle for quick classics such as – The Animal Farm or The Old Man and The Sea.
  2. Chicken Soup For Soul: I have not read any of the books in this series. But if you want to get started with non-fiction, this is the best series that you can try. There are many variants of the book such as – Teenage soul, pet-lover’s soul, teacher’s soul to name a few, which you can pick and choose as per your interest. A collection of longform anecdotes, these books can be tearjerkers.
  3. Fantasy novel: You can always start with Harry Potter. It is easy to read and has an amazing plotline.
  4. Fairy Tale or Folk tale: Fairy tales and Folk tales are never going out of fashion or print. If you love a particular country, other than yours, pick up a Fairy or a Folk tale from that part and enjoy having a glimpse into their culture. It becomes twice more interesting. Trust me.
  5. Literature inspired: If you want to have a taste of English literature and yet, afraid to swim through those long words and complex sentence, not to mention archaic words, then opt for Stories by Oscar Wilde, Edgar Allan Poe, O.Henry, Leo Tolstoy and abridged works of William Shakespeare.
  6. Children’s book: Alright, you might be a grown up but some children’s literature will never cease to amaze you. Pick up Enid Blyton’s Boarding school series or Mystery books and you will surely end up loving them. You can also pick up Bridge to Terabithia.
  7. Detective story: I am a Sherlock Holmes fan and have loved his stories or rather, cases since I started reading. You can either opt for Sherlock Holmes or settle for Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot or Miss Maple series.

Tell us about your collection. Does it include these books?