A world waiting to be explored

The Next Big Thing

The interview was going to be published in the next monthly edition of non-arguably the best-of-the-time magazine "The Next Big Thing". This magazine had shot to fame due to the eccentric nature of their ace interviewer, Rini. She interviewed the recent hot shots, who were being touted as the next big things that were going to happen.
Rini herself was the first person to be interviewed for the magazine after a massively successful stint of four years at radio jockeying where she grabbed the best RJ award twice amongst the plethora of other recognition she had. Soon after she was chosen to be the lead interviewer that threw open the giant fortune gates for the magazine.

An interview in the magazine meant a step closer to hearts of the wide audience it catered to. The concept of the magazine was that people from different avenues like sports, art, theatre etc. who have come up over the last month were hand-picked, shortlisted and interviewed. There was a "Star of the Show" section which was exclusively held for the individual who was the best of the lot to watch out for. Ofcourse, Rini was the interviewer for that section. The questions were direct and could be personal at times. The stars who indulged had to be of great mental strength to divulge themselves in front of thousands of readers.

Zahir couldn't sleep the last night and his eyes had no signs of sleep-deprivation as he stood in front of the office he was going to be interviewed in. Moments after, Zahir was waiting in a cool air-conditioned room, with all the paraphernalia neatly and meticulously placed around him. Rini entered the room and both of them greeted each other warmly. Rini's questions were no stereotype but she made sure her guests shared the comfort she felt inside the room. The interview was kick-started:

Rini: Your debut novel is a major hit. You've already reached households. There has been news of many movie makers trying to get rights of your book. Tell us something non-wikipedic about it.

Zahir: When I was writing this book, there were moments when I felt whether this would be a hit or not, whether this would be received well or not and all such sort of things. I must confess that these were distracting and initially road-blocking. There were numerous occasions when I felt blocked to write anything. I had stopped reading altogether, wasn't even reading newspapers. I think I had written 80 pages when I thought it won't work out and stopped. I got back to my old routine. I read anything that I got, newspapers, online articles, bureaucratic essays etc. It was then that it came to my notice that transcripts from my blog were being stolen and published on numerous sites and those got huge accolades. It pissed me off for a while. But what that also did was gave me the requisite impetus to pick up what I had relinquished. I read all the 80 pages, re-wrote them and further. When I look back today, that act of plagiarism by strangers who somehow had a humongous viewership instilled the lost confidence in me. I believe this book is a result of that. That's how it is.

Rini: Interesting, certainly non-wikipedic. You said that you had stopped reading altogether when you were writing this book. How necessary was it to stop reading?

Zahir: Very much. In the early days of the writing of this book, I did not feel the need to cut myself off. As a result, my writing was very distracted when I later read it. I realized, when I had to sit down and re-write those 80 odd pages, that I was getting far too trivial than what I set out initially. We are impacted by things around us and it is almost natural for us to derive inspiration from whatever we see and experience. Writing a book meant swimming to the depths of characters and a relentless search for diamond in a gold mine. Unfortunately, all these things don't happen in the real world, regularly.

Rini: Diamond in a gold mine! (laughs)
Your Wikipedia page says you were a blogger prior to the release of this book. Did the success of your blog made you get into writing a book?

Zahir: Well, my blog wasn't even a hit to be honest. There were people who read it but the number was very limited. Like many other bloggers, I too faced a problem of viewership. I changed the design of my blog, I started reading many other blogs to establish links but after a point of time, it became too cumbersome to spend so much effort into selling yourself. There were only some countable people, on and off the blogging world who went all out with me to envisage this dream. Their expectations kept me going.

to be continued..


A trek inhibited. Prophecy of a landslide owing to disheveling rain. The group was receding in a hope that they be swift enough to escape in time.

En route the narrow passage downhill, slipped she, to what could've been a final fall when he caught her hand...

...to an escapade, a trek and a journey.

Black and White Diaries

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 42; the forty-second edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. The theme for the month is "COLOR"
An artist less recognized, a child less loved, a friend less cared for, Vyom was everything you won't want to be. At 24, he was still in the third year of his engineering. His seniors who were once his batch mates used to make fun of him saying that he has been wearing the same clothes since his first year. He did not have enough dough. Perhaps he never got pocket money from his parents. He didn't use to mingle much. He never ragged juniors when all his batch mates derived pleasure out of it.

When I entered college, he was my senior. He had a raw appeal on his face and his ear-to-ear smile was childlike. It was through a mutual friend of ours that we got introduced. Slowly, I got to know Vyom better. He would talk a lot on messengers but generally lived a low profile routine in a place where everyone owned a kingdom of their own.

Vyom was a step child born to his father's illicit relationship with another woman. One day he woke up and found out that his parents were no more. There and then, ceased the existence of a 'family' for him.

He never wanted to mention it but I could see right through his heart. He was happy because he had no one to advice him anymore. He could be the self made man he always wanted to be. Just that he hadn't had enough dough to sustain his living.

For his "first year" clothes were all that he could manage by selling off his paintings. The paintings which could only be a result of a master's stroke. He would go to a nearby NGO and put his paintings on exhibition there. For every 100 bucks that the painting earned, he would be paid 70. Vyom's paintings were a hit though. One day he exhausted his painting colors and he couldn't paint anymore. His earnings had dried up. He won't take a penny from me. He said he did not want to take on liabilities. I was happy for him to not return the money but that used to intensify anger in an otherwise calm person.

The irony of life was such that when his paintbrush asked to be fed, he did not have enough money to feed himself. We used to walk in a lone part of college. That is where I found peace. We had started to hold hands. I would tightly entangle my fingers with his and hours would pass by, just like that.

One day while we were walking, he disentangled our fingers and ran up to something. I followed him. He turned around and signaled me move away. He was doing something on a large folded paper he just took out from his pocket. At a distance, it was me looking with sufficient perplexity to lead to hysteria. After a while, he called me to witness a moment of unfathomable truce. Lying in front of me was a sand painting and sitting besides it was the artist.

His earnings were going to come back. He kept looking at the painting. The red sand, the fine pebbles and the yellow dust and an A1 size paper. That were the only paraphernalia he now required. His eyes were beaming.
"Necessity is the mother of invention", he came in line with it, the hard way.

Now if you ask me about myself, I am about to graduate this year and Vyom would take at least one year more in all possible likelihood (if he completes his engineering!). In the coming two months, I'm going to be out of this town, probably far away from Vyom.

Once I'm gone I don't know if he'd care. He has grown up in void of any company. I recently was away from college for a week. There was indifference in his attitude on my return. His tears have dried up and his expectations from anyone are at a bare minimum.

The other day when it went from breezy to windy to raining, we spent time in the shelter of a broken warehouse. We kissed before parting and he uncurled my tresses. Till date, that remains the most passionate moment I have with him.

From his black and white life, Vyom filled colors in the life of an imperfect girl diagnosed with Vitiligo.
I would now depart to enjoy all my time with him. We never know what tomorrow holds. But for now, in his company, I have learnt some painting too.

A large crowd, very exuberant, very enthusiastic, a horde creating all the buzz and....

A man amongst the boys!
The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. Participation Count: 08

Random whims and fancies

So much so that nobody cares anymore. Happy to go with the flow. That tide once in a while which used to matter is now lost somewhere in time. People who love you would come and tell you what they have learnt from life. Take a cue (really?).

An extreme moment of anger. And then an almost compulsive playing down. Why? Because anger breaks, never makes? And what about the positive sides of venting anger out? An optimist will see that, and those who claim they are should apparently sight that too!

Not a materialistically destructive person but if I break things harmlessly that should make me feel good. At least I'm not hurting others. (Oh Please!!)

Shallow as I say. Shallow!!

Run. Come on. Faster. See, that lad who is 10 yards behind you is catching up every moment (which is technically 90 seconds, did you know that?). And we follow suit. Almost naturally. Justified because we're competitive. Don't answer me, ask yourself. Once. Twice. Again. One more time.

Randomness is very much a part of everything we do. But that in no way means we go for things yielding us the best perceived expected value. (This is stats by the way, expected values and all)

I have tears in my eyes. But you won't see it because I am not crying out rightly. And it would need a pure soul to go beyond the realms of hypocrisy to gauge it, or may be a very loving soul who sees it right past my heart.

And I don't care about the rest, may be I do. Sigh. Such is life.

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