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THE BOOK
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October 21, 2014

Happy wali Diwali to you


Wishing you all a very happy Diwali. May this festival light up your face with a million watt smile that finds a zillion reasons to stay forever! :)

October 06, 2014

'Water Girl'


They called her a child of the sea. Even as a baby, she would love the splashing sound of the waves, the sweeping motion of the water as it washed over her feet. She was happiest when her parents took her to the beach. While most children were busy building sand castles and collecting shells, she would spend hours gazing at the sea, appreciating the setting sun, focusing her sight on distant sailing boats, smiling at the ebb and flow of the tidal current. Her friends would fondly call her 'Water Girl'.

As she grew up, her love for the sea translated into songs. She had a beautiful voice and soon enough her talent, like her beauty, was recognized far and wide. They said she had great potential. That night, her parents held a special beach party.
She wore a gorgeous blue dress, blue like the color of the sea, blue like her innocent eyes which matched it. A tiara of fragrant flowers held back her lovely straight hair. There was food and wine. There was song and dance......and amidst all this, she vanished!

Some call it a suicide. Others say it was a high tide and the strong waves swept her away. But only a few believe in what could have actually been...
She was a child of the sea, and the sea called her home!

October 03, 2014

A special Dusshra wish

Here's wishing all you blessed people a very happy Dusshra!

Just like Lord Ram won against the wicked king Ravana, may the good in us all triumph over the evil...
Today, let's eliminate at least one bad quality we possess. Be it anger, lust, attachment, greed, excessive pride, jealousy, injustice, cruelty, selfishness or ego...each of these ten vices (represented by the ten heads of the demon king.) need to be recognized and fought against. Let's start with ourselves...

So which head of Ravana (within you) are you going to slay today? :)

October 02, 2014

The notebook called 'Life'


Life is a notebook handed over to us the day we are born. We are allowed to record our moments, to turn the pages as fast or as slow as we want to, to pour out our heart on the empty white sheets. We are allowed to sketch our dreams in all their myriad colors. Sometimes, it also permits us to staple together those pages we do not ever want to read again. But human as we are, we tend to go back. Life allows even that-we can carefully remove the staples to have a quick peep once in a while. This does include the risk of tearing the edges a little, but if we are careful enough, we can prevent the damage. After all that's how we introspect don't we---by removing the staples??!!

Life is a notebook, and what we write in it is for us to decide. But one thing is pre-decided. We are not allowed to write in pencil, because words in pencil fade away. Scribbles in pencil can be rubbed off when wanted. But life--it only allows us to write in dark ink. We can never really wipe off what we have once written nor can we expect it to fade. Yes, we can ignore it if we want to, but it stays  right there. It's almost always a 'you can run but you cant hide' scenario. Ripping off pages is also futile, because eventually that will only end up loosening the binding which will cause all the pages to scatter.

Life is a notebook, and our job is to make notes along the way...notes which will guide us in writing the subsequent pages, words which will bring back memories as we flip the pages open, some chapters we manage to close yet not complete, some scribbles which are too incomprehensible for anyone to read, some poetry which the eye is not able to understand yet the heart is able to recite, some experiences which we wouldn't trade for even a thousand brand new books.
Yes, there would surely be moments of hurt, pain, let down expectations, unfulfilled dreams, pent up hatred as well, which definitely would bring a tear to the eye.
But as we turn the pages we would realize how those experiences made us stronger, how we emerged a winner against them, how we welcomed happiness even after we thought we never could, and most importantly, how we learnt to dream all over again. And after all, what is life without a few challenges, and what is success without a few failures? Of what use is a notebook if we weren't allowed to write in it?? The sheer magic of life is in its unpredictability. It does not allow you to have any clue today, what tomorrow's page would be like---tear stained, joy filled, stapled, enthusiastic or blank!!

Life is a note book, one which is very private and personal..one which only the owner is supposed to read and write into. But as we fill in the pages with details of our mundane life, we sometimes come across that special someone who we can trust enough to hand over the book...someone who we know will treasure it more than we do...someone we can put our whole life at stake for..someone who teaches us the true meaning of love and trust..and that is the time we start writing through someone else's words. We dream through someone else's dreams. We see through someone else's eyes. We begin to live another life in addition to our own...that is when we stop writing and that thing called 'love' takes over, filling in all the details by itself.

Life is a notebook, one which will destroy itself when it comes to the last page. But the pages written by love will still remain, flying free knowing no bounds, speaking of the bond that is immortal thus bringing about a strange sorta satisfaction...a satisfaction that we made it even through the end!!


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P.S: My debut novel 'Twists Of Fate' is up for pre-order. Last few days remaining. You can check it out here

September 24, 2014

In wax and stone lies a story unknown...


"I cannot take it anymore.You are selfish and cold and will never understand my love," cried the wax statue as it melted into a hot pool of droplets.

Its stone counterpart stared in silence as the world around mocked at it being so unyielding to emotions. As it was kicked around with scornful words and hurtful taunts, nobody noticed it was slowly getting chipped---the heartless one was made of stone after all, they thought.

As time went by, the winds of change blew again. The wax statue was remodeled into an exquisite design once again, by the artistic hands of a talented craftsman. Being made of wax, it molded itsself smoothly to the flame of love and passion, and soon enough the world was captivated by its breath taking beauty.

The stone sculpture that once was, however refused to adapt to the breeze of love---for it had already known its brunt.
Being made of stone, it had silently stepped into remorse and self destruction---neither uttering a cry nor offering any explanation, the grief gnawed its way to reach its core. So disintegrated became its personality, that no artist in the world could change it into anything akin to its original self, leave alone something better. The flame of love and passion could only make it hold its self for a while---always until old memories swept in and then it would crumble again to bits, taking down unexpressed hopes and hearts along with it.

The hurtful words of a loved one had slowly chipped it off its strength and splendor.The isolation from someone it considered no different than its own self had eaten away the very essence of its existence, which was once the very reason it stood proud and tall.
The misunderstanding had chiseled out an abyss of pain beneath its tough exterior.

While the wax statue was surrounded by applause and accolades, its stone counterpart had transmogrified into a good-for-nothing pile of grit confined to one end of a dilapidated construction site.
Soon the quarry workers would decide its future.But either way it was doomed.

However, there lay a strange kind of solace.
At least now, no one was complaining!

September 10, 2014

It's an October baby...

Hello friends,

I bring good news!
But first, a confession. I have been guilty. Guilty of keeping a secret from you guys for way too long. I must confess, I was up to something. While I received emails and pings from readers (that amounted to a decent crowd back then), I was busy tending to a hopeful heart.
Allow me to explain. I know most of you (who are not in my Fb friend list) might have no clue and think that this was a sure case of infidelity towards the pen and the blog, but please hear me out. I am not the cheating kind!

You all are well aware of my love for writing. Blogging for more than twelve years managed to increase it only more. But somewhere, the dream of writing what was asking to be written kept gnawing at me. I just couldn't blog it out of my system. It felt too sacrosanct to be recorded in the temporary memory of cyber space. It had to be more permanent than that. It had to be a bigger platform from where I could be heard. It had to be a book!
And so I got down to do some serious writing....

 If anyone told you that publishing a book was a piece of cake, I would suggest you to go and slap the person on the face. Yes, slap him/her for the blatant lie!
Don't get me wrong. The whole experience of writing a book should never be confused with the journey of publishing. They are a world apart. While the former is a fantastic experience making you feel proud of yourself for pursuing a dream, the latter makes sure it squeezes every bit of that pride and leaves you feeling like you are the scum of the literary world. It's a different story if you belong to the gene pool of published authors, or have a Godfather/Godmother in the publishing world, but for people like me, who always thought writing was all about pouring your heart and soul onto the pages of a book for people to read, it is indeed a journey full of revelations and surprises.

So after going through a lot of depressive phases in between (with each rejection email, the earliest one being exactly fifteen seconds after I emailed it making me wonder if they actually read you if you are a newbie), I finally got lucky.
But it didn't end there. That was just the beginning. The journey that followed was long and tiring. The experience was new and daunting at times. But at the end of the day, I learnt something (mostly patience).

However, now that I am nearing the big day, I brace myself for the long walk to the book store.
And this is where I get hopeful all over again...

I don't know how many of you still read me (the comments seem to have dwindled lately). But if you are reading, please know that this is very important to me. I have dived in hook, line and sinker, and I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that the world will give me a chance to tell a story that longs to be told. 'Twists Of Fate' (Yes, that is the name of my novel) has been occupying every single waking moment these days, and my entire life seems to revolve around it.
I can now understand what a mother would feel when she is about to bring her baby in this world. The nervousness, the anxiety, the last minute panic attacks and not to forget the faith and hope that everything will turn out fine. 'Twists Of Fate' is my October baby!

Here is the book trailer video that offers a sneak peek into the novel. Hope you guys enjoy it!
 

Here is the link to the official facebook page. Please 'like' it to stay updated...
http://facebook.com/TOFthenovel

'Twists Of Fate' is now available for pre-order at an early bird discounted price on Infibeam, Homeshop18 and uRead. Here are the links.

Infibeam:
http://www.infibeam.com/Books/twists-fate-priyanka-naik/9789350881002.html?utm_term=Twists+of+fate+by+priyanka+naik_1_1

Homeshop18:
 http://www.homeshop18.com/twists-fate/author:priyanka-naik/isbn:9789350881002/books/fiction/product:32783669/cid:10916/?pos=1

uRead: 
http://www.uread.com/book/twists-fate-priyanka-naik/9789350881002

The book will be released next month. So watch the (web)space on Facebook and Blogger for more updates in the weeks to come.

I hope you guys are there with me and my October baby all the way to the book store, and even beyond...

Signing off with love,
Yours truly,
Pri :)


P.S: If the book is tempting you to pick it up even before it's out, then maybe, just maybe...you are 'fated' to read it! ;)

September 04, 2014

I 'text' you

With the advent of WhatsApp, FaceBook, Twitter, and so many other social networking sites, we have started paying extra homage to the written word in communication.
Gone is the era when we used to pick up the phone and yap away endlessly with our besties, meet with them over a cup of coffee to discuss the latest gossip, or cry on their shoulders over our latest heart break while they offered us a box of tissues.
Nowadays, we just text message them. Whatsapping is even better. It's cheaper and there is this whole set of emoji's (one for every emotion) so that you don't really miss out on any reaction, be it the angry 'mad-at-you' face, or that cute little 'beating heart' that makes you wonder whether you could really be half as expressive as that.

If your friends are busy, there is always the broadcast option or social networks that you can resort to. These enable your friends to fuss over you as and when they log in, and you can sit back and feel better on counting their 'likes' and comments. So cool, eh?

This post, however, is about texting styles. There are so many different types and yours truly being a big fan of the written word herself, could not help but observe and admire the variety.
I have shortlisted the eight most common ones here.

1) The text-spread-the-love fanatic:
We all know at least one such a friend who keeps adorning her messages with lots of hearts, kisses, and hugs. No text is devoid of 'sweety', 'sweetheart', 'munchkin', 'cupcake' and other such overtly diabetic vocabulary. You might be her ace rival, but she will never miss out on an opportunity to throw in pleasantry.

2) The frozen-text icicle:
This is a person of very few (written) words. Most of the texts include monosyllabic responses. Be happy if you manage to force out a complete sentence from him/her, this species of 'texters' is the happiest when you ask them direct leading questions.
Please note: They tend to use emoji's and reason that they are being neck deep in work, but trust me, these are simply excuses to keep the one-sided conversation going.

3) The text-novelist:
Contrary to the frozen icicle, the novelist (as the name suggests) will go on and on, regardless of whether you reply or not. Ask them a question and they will be happily answering it for the next ten minutes or so, before they realize that you might have fallen asleep.

4) The laughter-text-club member:
We all know that laughter is the best medicine, but these guys just take insanity a notch higher when they begin or end each text with a 'LOL'. What they don't always realize is that the 'hahaha' and 'hihihi' is way more irritating...especially when the guy on the other side doesn't get the joke!
However, when two laughter-club members tend to text each other................well, no! I'm sure they irritate the hell out of each other as well.

5) The emotional-text player:
These are people who propose or break up over texts...enough said!

6) The happy hours text-philosopher:
This is usually someone who would sell his/her pancreas and liver in exchange for some clarity in life. But all of a sudden, he/she starts sending inspirational and philosophical text messages to everyone he/she knows. Ofcourse, if it wasn't for auto correct, we would have a tough time reading these out aloud  when he/she is sober.

7) The text-devdaas:
As quite evident by the nomenclature, this species resorts to an exaggerated version of drunk texting to emotionally blackmail an ex. Most of the times, the text-devdaas is well aware of this shortcoming and keeps his phone switched off during happy hours. However, self control is not usually a virtue of a broken heart and an inebriated mind.

8) The 24/7 active texter:
I don't know how they do it. But these people seem to be active all the time. Text them at 3 am in the morning, and they'd reply. Whatsapp them at any odd time, and whoosh! They appear 'online' immediately. It's nice to have these kind of friends though...they provide you a sort of a security blanket. So what if it's only on texts. You know they are always just a few alphabets away.

Phew! That quite sums up all the major types of texters and their texting habits.

I know what you must be wondering. What category do I fall in, eh?
Well, there is nothing like a little suspense to get this place up and going. So, that, my dear reader, is best kept a secret...for you to figure and me to keep quiet about. *chuckles to herself*

Cheers!!! 

September 02, 2014

The bird who thought he was not...

I have a cousin who (unlike me) is a great lover of animals. Don't get me wrong. I like animals too, but from a safe distance. The moment they are at arms length or closer, I just freeze both physically as well as mentally!
However, what I like doing is listening to their owners speak about them. I would love to know what biscuits you feed your dog or what shampoo you use to bathe him. I would be very much interested in his eccentric quirks and adorable antics, his vet appointments and other stories that you would so excitedly rattle off. But ask me to give him a pat on the head or a rub on his belly, and I'd run for the hills. I guess I'm more theoretical like that.

So when I visited my cousin's place, I had mentally prepared myself to expect a friendly mongrel yapping his tail, trying to chew at my chappals, or a furry feline purring away angrily at me for sitting on its favorite couch. My cousin had recently moved into a new apartment, and being the pet lover that he is, I had braced myself for the terrorizing panic attack I was bound to receive at his place.

But surprise of all surprises, when I entered his house, I was relieved to see no trace of any four legged creature around. I just could not believe it.
Still looking all over (without making it too obvious ofcourse), I confirmed that no one was hiding...no mad scheming cat, no over friendly salivating dog. There was no one. Good sense finally prevailed. My cousin had moved on from his emotional hangover of animal love. God was being kind to me. There was no reason for me to be terrified anymore, I thought.

Just then, I heard a squawk, "Mitthoo". Then another one, this time louder, "Mitthoo Mitthoo,"

My head would have done an almost 360 degree turn (somewhat like the ghost in 'The exorcist') in the direction of the voice, when suddenly I saw my cousin grinning at me, tongue in cheek.

"Meet the recent member of the family," he said, and pointed towards an open drawer.
It took me a while to focus to where he was pointing. He switched on the overhead fluorescent bulb and the corridor lit up revealing a green winged something perched comfortably on an open cabinet drawer.
I screeched, almost twice as loud as the parrot.What if the excited loon flew and perched on my head instead?

It was then that my cousin told me Mitthoo's story. Apparently, there was nothing to worry. Mitthoo was a bird with an identity crisis.
Found almost lifeless under a tree when he was just a baby, my cousin's wife, who was herself a child back then, had given it food and brought him home to shelter it from the predator cobra that had eaten its entire family. Unaware of any kin of its own, poor Mitthoo grew up with humans all his life, not realizing even once that he was any different. Having missed out on the entire stage of fledging, gliding along slopes and walking on two feet was the most natural way of getting from one place to another. He didn't know any better than that.

My cousin's wife told me that Mitthoo would from now on be living with them. I could understand her sentiments. The story, however, had caught my intrigue. Ofcourse I was relieved as well, now there was no need to worry about Mitthoo swooping over my head and scaring the day lights out of me.
But it also got me wondering about him. I felt bad for the poor creature. This silly old bird would not fly away even if his cage door was left wide open...not because he didn't want to...but because he didn't know he could.

On a slightly tangential thought, I could not help compare us humans with Mitthoo.
How many times do we refrain from attempting something only because we are not aware of our capabilities?
How many dreams have we disposed off thinking that it's silly to even hope that big?
Don't we all find it safer to walk in baby steps, even when the truth could perhaps be that we are born to fly?
I looked at the parrot as my cousin carefully picked him up from the perch and placed him in his cage. It was his meal time. The cage was his home, and he felt safe and happy there.

I glanced at the open window and smiled. Mitthoo would never know what he was missing!


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P.S: Hope you all had a very happy Ganesh Chaturthi!! May Ganpati Bappa guide us, protect us and bless us to reach our maximum potential!!