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ANNIVERSARY ISSUE

STORIZEN SPECIAL Modern Intellect Which Shows “Expect the Unexpected” Tuhin Sinha

HOW THE BAD MAN GOT BOOKED?

ROSHMILA BHATTACHARYA Exclusive Feature on PAGE 8


Now Available on:Â


Cover Photo

Author Interviews

Roshmila Bhattacharya

Swapna Peri

Brand Partners

Pria Raiyani

HarperCollins India Hachette India Fingerprint Publishing

Editors Pria Raiyani Saurabh Chawla

Swapna Peri

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Book Reviews

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WHAT'S INSIDE 7

EDITOR'S NOTE

8

COVER STORY How the Bad Man got booked - Roshmila Bhattacharya

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Resurgent India by Bimal Jalan

- Pria 24

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HOT OFF THE PRESS

- HarperCollins Publishers

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A Gandhian Affair by Sanjay Suri

- HarperCollins India

- HarperCollins India

HOT OFF THE PRESS BHUMIKA by Aditya Iyengar

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HOT OFF THE PRESS Tools and Weapons by Brad Smith

- Hachette India

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- Saurabh Chawla

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STORIZEN CONTRIBUTE How To Oovercome The Darker Side Of Success

- Hachette India

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STORIZEN SPECIAL Modern Intellect Which Shows Expect the Unexpected - Tuhin Sinha

HOT OFF THE PRESS

The Black Dwarves of the Good Little Bay by Varun Mathew

HOT OFF THE PRESS

Reel India: Cinema off the Beaten Track by Namrata Joshi

– Hachette India

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HOT OFF THE PRESS

The Future-Ready Organization by Gyan Nagpal

– Hachette India

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HOT OFF THE PRESS

Pooja Bagul

HOT OFF THE PRESS

Operation X by Captain MNR Captain MNR Captain MNR Samant Samant(MVC) - HarperCollins Publishers

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STORIZEN CONTRIBUTE The Other Side of Success - Sumana Bhattacharya


WHAT'S INSIDE 58

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STORIZEN INTERVIEW

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STORIZEN REVIEW

Damini Kane, Author - The Sunlight Plane

Killing AshishKarve: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery

- Swapna Peri

- Swapna Peri

STORIZEN CONTRIBUTE

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Confession

STORIZEN POETRY The Emergence

- Harsha Shastry

- Vidya Shankar

STORIZEN CONTRIBUTE Fall Forward

100 STORIZEN POETRY Shadow side of Greatness

- Dipanjana Nath

- Anandbabu

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STORIZEN CONTRIBUTE Bach, a Hand, and a Dress with Pockets - Damini Kane

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STORIZEN REVIEW The Murder of Sonia Raikkonen: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery - Swapna Peri

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STORIZEN REVIEW 3 and a Half Murders: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery - Swapna Peri

102 STORIZEN POETRY The bitter path of success

- Aparna Mukherjee


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from the editor

calling all writers!

DO YOU WANT TO BE A PART OF STORIZEN FAMILY? You can also be a contributor. Mail us your entries at talktous@storizen.com. Your smart ideas and inputs help us create our informative issues.

"Evil is a source of moral intelligence in the sense that we

need to learn from our shadow, from our dark side, in order to be good." John Bradshaw has beautifully described that success comes with a price. Like the coin has two sides, success also has two sides to it. Keeping this in mind, we have dedicated the theme for the Anniversary Special issue of Storizen Magazine as the "Dark Side of Success." We are so glad to feature the Journalist-Author of the Mumbai Mirror Roshmila Bhattacharaya, who recently penned the autobiography of the Bollywood's own Bad Man, Gulshan Grover. How the Bad Man Got Booked? Check out the exclusive interview with Roshmila! Book Lovers, we bring you eight hot new releases in association with HarperCollins India, Hachette India and Fingerprint Publishing viz. The Future-Ready Organization by Gyan Nagpal, Bhumika by Aditya Iyengar, Tools and Weapons by Brad Smith, Yoga & Stress Management by Acharya Yatendra, The Black Dwarves of the Good Little Bay by Varun Mathew, Operation X by Captain MNR Captain MNR Captain MNR Samant Samant(MVC) (MVC), Resurgent India by Bimal Jalan, A Gandhian Affair by Sanjay Suri, and Reel India: Cinema off the Beaten Track by Namrata Joshi. Have you ever expected the unexpected? The Abrogation of Article 370 and 35A has been predicted by the Screenwriter-Author-Politician, Tuhin Sinha in his last book, When the Chief fell in Love. Do check out an interview with the author on how the unexpected can happen in reality! Author's voice! Do check out an interview with Damini Kane, Author - The Sunlight Plane. Does your success also have a dark side? Do check out our Editor's Choice article by Pooja Bagul on How to Overcome the Dark Side of Success! You are surely going to love the stories and the wonderful poetry from our contributors in this Issue. This issue also features three Book Reviews - The Murder of Sonia Raikkonen: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery, 3 and a Half Murders: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery, Killing Ashish Karve: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery. Help us spread the word by a like, comment and share! Happy Reading!

Saurabh Chawla, Editor in Chief editor@storizen.com


COVER STORY

HOW THE BAD MAN GOT BOOKED?

ROSHMILA BHATTACHARYA AN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW After writing successful columns in the Mumbai Mirror, reporting Bollywood stories, latest happenings in the cinema, Roshmila Bhattacharya has another feather in her cap with the autobiography of Bollywood's own Bad Man, Gulshan Grover. How the Bad Man got booked? Roshmila tells Pria.

by Pria Working with Mumbai Mirror, bringing out an entertainment supplement six days a week, how has the journey been so far? The journey started six years ago, when I joined Mumbai Mirror as the entertainment editor. It’s a daily challenge, but an exhilarating adventure. The phone calls start from early in the morning and go on till way past midnight as we sift through news and select what works. It’s a tough job and a tiring one, but when I am away on 8

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leave, I miss the thrill of breaking stories within the 10 pm deadline. Of course, this means a severely curtailed social life, since I am in office from 3 pm till at least 10 pm, Sunday to Friday. Then, there’s a minimum three hours commute with only Saturdays off provided nothing major breaks. Still, the buzz of a newsroom is an addictive fix.

AUGUST 2019


Growing up on the fringes of our capital city, Gulshan Grover moved to Mumbai to pursue a career in acting in the 1970s. At a time when most wannabe actors held out for the lead, he made a conscious choice to opt for villainous roles. He went on to portray many memorable characters, with a career-defining role in the 1989 blockbuster, Ram Lakhan, that established him firmly as the 'Bad Man' of Bollywood.Many a mainstream potboiler of the era rode to success on his trademark one-liners and grotesque get-ups that have become part of Bollywood folklore. He subsequently moved on to the international arena, among the first actors from Mumbai to do so, in the process becoming one of India's more recognizable faces in international cinema.In this autobiography, Grover tells his story-the films, the journey, the psychological and personal toll of sustaining the 'bad man' image, the competition among Bollywood's villains, the move to playing more rounded characters, and the challenge of doing international films without relocating to another country or opting out of mainstream Hindi cinema.


COVER STORY

Tell us about your unique column - This Week, That Year. What inspired it? This is my third column. When I was working with Hindustan Times, one day, listening to stories of my interactions with stars over the years, my editor suggested a column in HT Café that would acquaint readers with the person behind the persona. That’s how Star Stories came about. It continued for four years, till my last day in HT. After five years, I bid the paper goodbye with a column on Shah Rukh Khan with whom I had started it.

To be honest, I had never thought the column would become quite so popular because I was always given to believe that nostalgia doesn’t sell.

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To be honest, I had never thought the column would become quite so popular because I was always given to believe that nostalgia doesn’t sell. But I have had strangers telling me they read the column every Sunday. In fact, almost three years after it stopped, a man I had never met suddenly stopped me at the railway station to complain that he couldn’t find Star Stories in the paper anymore and missed it. When I told him that I had moved to Mumbai Mirror, he frowned, “You should have taken it to Mirror then.”

Suniel Shetty, Gulshan Grover, Rishi Kapoor with Sandeep Chakravorty, Consul General Of India in New York on the launch of #BadMan

AUGUST 2019


COVER STORY

Well, I didn’t bring Star Stories to Mirror, but I started another column here, In Focus, in which I looked at the little things that made the big picture. For instance, “Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya”, the evergreen song for rebellious lovers that Madhubala danced to in Mughal-e-Azam, Vivah’s trial by fire and Dilip Kumar and Raaj Kumar’s jodi which made Subahsh Ghai’s Saudagar unforgettable.

the publications I have worked with, from Filmfare, Asian Age’s Entertainment magazine to Screen (Indian Express), Zee Premiere, indiainfo.com, HT Café and now, Mumbai Mirror.

After around four years, when I found myself running out of films, along with my wonderfully supportive editor, Meenal Baghel, who is always urging me to push the envelope, came up with the idea of This Week, That Year. In Focus was also her idea but this gives me a wider field to play in since I can talk about a person who was born or died this week, a film which was unveiled or an event of magnitude.

The idea of writing a book had been playing on my mind for a while. I started dabbling in fiction a couple of years ago and written a full-fledged novel. A murdermystery revolving around two cops and set in Goa, with a word count of around 80,000, it was edited and ready to go to press when my publisher hit a rough patch and we decided to amicably part ways. I pitched it to a few other publishing houses, but while everyone showed interest in it, the deal they offered was ludicrous and I wasn’t interested in signing off all my rights for peanuts.

All three columns are rooted in past classics and legends, and have proved the adage, “Old is gold”, true. I own my identity as a journalist as much to them as to AUGUST 2019

From writing stories and happenings in Bollywood to getting a chance to write an autobiography on Gulshan Grover, what was experience like?

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COVER STORY

(L-R) Roshmila Bhattacharya, Suniel Shetty, Raju Chadha, Vijay Darda, Jackie Shroff, Gulshan Grover, LK Advani, Mahima Chaudhry, Pratibha Advani, Sunil Sethi, Preeti Chaturvedi

Meanwhile, I met my literary agent, Kanishka Gupta, whose company, Writer’s Side, has represented more than 400 authors. He pointed out that publishing is a difficult field to break into for a debutant who is not a celebrity and rather than pitch a novel, I should work on an authorized biography or something on the lines of my columns. I started writing a book on the old classic Kismet, but after 20,000 words I ran out of material because there was no one alive associated with the Ashok Kumar starrer to talk about it. Around the time, some colleagues were launching autobiographies of 12

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actors. I discussed the idea with a couple of stars. Some weren’t ready to open their lives to the world, others felt it was too early for them. With one, who I do not wish to name, we reached the halfway mark when suddenly the actor-filmmaker pulled back arguing it used to take him seven years to complete a film, how could he let me write a book on him in seven months? I am waiting for at least five years to pass before I go back to him with the request that we finish this authorized biography. I know despite the time lag, it will still make interesting reading. One of the biggest publishing houses of the country is still holding on to that contract. AUGUST 2019


COVER STORY

I had interviewed Gulshan Grover several times in the past, on occasions written columns on his films which were always well received. I always found him to be lucid and candid. So, I sounded out my commissioning editor, Swati Chopra, of Penguin India. She liked the idea of booking the ‘Bad Man’, and after discussing it internally, gave me the go-ahead. I called Gulshan early one morning, and in five minutes, he had given his nod. This was last year, towards the end of July. We signed the contract towards the end of September, and on October 17, the complete manuscript was submitted to Penguin. This may sound hard to believe, but it took us just three weeks and around 15 telephonic conversations, lasting from

15 minutes to an hour, to plot Bad Man which was written in a month and a half. Of course, I have to add here that Gulshan was very cooperative and collaborative, reading each draft while it was being written and edited, at least half-a-dozen times, right down to the last comma and full stop. He also had some very valid ideas which have worked beautifully for the book. Swati has been extremely encouraging and motivating as was another senior copy editor at Penguin, Shantanu Ray Chaudhuri, who worked very closely and diligently with me on the book.

I had interviewed Gulshan Grover several times in the past, on occasions written columns on his films which were always well received.

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Rapid Fire With Roshmila: 1. Your all-time favorite author/writer? Jhumpa Lahiri, Jeffrey Archer, Sidney Sheldon, Enid Blyton… The list is too long. 2. Do you believe in writer’s block? Did you have it anytime or not? No, but I do believe that time flies too quickly and blocks you from writing more. 3. Your favorite place to write your book(s) My laptop… the dining table at home… and night time, which is my time. 4. What do you do in your free time? Read

5. Do you Google yourself? Yes, of course


COVER STORY

We launched Bad Man this year on July 24 in Taj, Delhi, at a starstudded event hosted by Penguin in association with Sunil Sethi, Chairman, Fashion Design Council of India, who was with Gulshan at Sriram College of Commerce. Our former Deputy Prime Minister, LK Advani ji, did the honours. The esteemed guests included his daughter, Pratibha Advani, former Supreme Court judge AK Sikri, BCCI acting president CK Khanna, hotelier Jyotsna Suri, actors Mahima Chaudhry, Suneil Shetty and Jackie Shroff, producers Raju Chadha and Rahul Mittra among others.

What influence does Bollywood have on the audience today as compared to that in earlier years? I would say not much has changed. Bollywood actors were our heroes then, they remain our heroes even today. Gulshan Grover have be a ‘Bad Man’ on screen, but going by the number of people who want his selfies and autographs, I’d say he’s as much a ‘Good Man’ in real life, and for me the perfect gentleman. And while his journey may have ended in 16 chapters in the book, it is still continuing in all its glory on

"I would say not much has changed. Bollywood actors were our heroes then, they remain our heroes even today."

How does it feel to write a book? Well, it’s no different from filing an interview, but the process of bringing it out is a little more longdrawn and the response more overwhelming.

AUGUST 2019

screen, with three big films featuring him in the making-Mahesh Bhatt’s Sadak 2, Rohit Shetty’s Suryavanshi and Sanjay Gupta’s Mumbai Saga. This is just another reason to say that as far

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as this Bad Man’s popularity goes, not much has changed. Who knows, one day we may just be writing a sequel to this book. How did you come up with the idea of writing a book on Gulshan Grover? As someone pointed out the other day, it was a book waiting to be written. Gulshan has done over 400 films in a career spanning four decades, not just in Hindi, but in English too. He’s worked with German, French, Polish, Iranian, Malaysian, Nepalese filmmakers. He was the first mainstream Bollywood

outskirts of our capital city, GG went on to brush shoulders with the Prince of Wales, Prime Ministers, Presidents, Hollywood A-listers, Bollywood legends and corporate tycoons. It’s a story that I’m sure will touch hearts, inspire youngsters and leave a lasting impression. As he says, “I didn’t even dare to dream because I was struggling to survive with the hope that I could carry the battle forward to another day, and I went on to conquer the world. So, don’t be afraid to chase after your dream, no matter how impossible it seems.”

"Gulshan has done over 400 films in a career spanning four decades, not just in Hindi, but in English too."

actor to attempt Hollywood.

a

career

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Starting out in a small a house with no electricity which he had to share with five siblings in Tri-Nagar on the 16

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What if some differ with you regarding some events that you have written about? How do you deal with such situations?

AUGUST 2019


COVER STORY

Gulshan has been refreshingly honest and candid about his life, yet, we have been careful not to hurt anyone’s sentiments. I should hope no one will have any reason to disagree with anything. The idea of so many reads was to make the Bad Man good reading, but at the same time ensure no one felt bad about it. Have the events in the 'Bad Man' been modified in any way or have they been written as they happened in reality? We haven’t taken any creative liberties if that’s what you mean. There’s enough drama in Gulshan Grover’s life without us having to add any more. What you read is what he experienced. Which genres do you enjoy reading the most? I have always been an avid reader. I like anything that engages my attention. But horror and murder mysteries are a particular favourite. Someday I want to publish a book of horror stories which are not about avenging chudails, blood-sucking bhoots and headless ghouls but AUGUST 2019

people who think and feel, who may or may not be real. What is the biggest surprise that you experienced after writing the book? I discovered how much I like telling stories… And I discovered a whole world of strangers who have gone out of the way to support and encourage me, by buying my book, writing about it and telling me how much they have enjoyed it. Be it my columns, interviews or this book, this journey would not be possible without my readers or my family, in particular my husband, Pallab, who has given me all the space I need, and my daughter, Ranjika, who is my sounding board. My mom is my sternest critic and my ma-in-law is my biggest fan. Anything you would like to tell your readers? I want to request them to never break this connection we have forged over a 30-year career. I write because I want people to read me. As I keep saying, bouquets or brickbats, I am ready for everything, but please keep them coming.

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What are the ways in which you promote your work? Do you find that these detract from your writing time?

Writing is my field, promotion is Gulshan’s. My job leaves me with little time to travel, but he’s been travelling with the book, from Delhi to Lucknow and New York, where it was launched at Times Square on August 16, at an event organized by the Federation of Associations NYNJ-CT. There are many other launches in the pipeline. Every day, invitations are extended to come to different cities and countries, offers for language editions and lit fest

your writing time. I have not taken even a day’s leave to write and edit this book nor did it ever hamper my workday schedule. The only thing I had to sacrificed was a few hours of sleep and some socializing. Since neither is a priority, I didn’t miss out on much. What projects are you working on at the present? When can we expect a new book/autobiography from you? A manuscript has been submitted to a publisher, it’s too early to talk about it. I have been dabbling with fiction too, and there are a couple of

"We haven’t taken any creative liberties if that’s what you mean. There’s enough drama in Gulshan Grover’s life without us having to add any more. What you read is what he experienced."

calls. As I told Gulshan when we were working on it, this book has no expiry date and can be promoted lifelong. If you are focused, nothing cuts into 18

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projects there. I hope to script a film and a web series someday as well. Another autobiography? Sure, I’m open to the idea if the other person is. I am looking for a gentleman collaborator like Gulshan. A lady is welcome too. AUGUST 2019


COVER STORY

Tell us about Roshmila, the person. What is your daily writing/researching routine like? Roshmila is a person who wishes the day had more than just 24 hours because she is always pressed for time. Between family, chores, work and writing, I feel like a buzzing bee. I’m always looking to explore new avenues, be it teaching journalism at the graduate and post-grad level which I did for five years while with Screen (Indian Express) and HT to writing two 100-days-100-stories series on Facebook. The daily routine includes a lot of subbing and some brainstorming, a little time selecting the right pictures for the stories and working on pages with the designer which I enjoy. There’s also the occasional interview, along with the weekly column, which are filed either late at night, early in the morning or in the midst of evening chaos. Writing is more than just a profession… It is my passion. It’s my reason to live… It is my identity. So, I know I will always find time for it. AUGUST 2019

How do you feel about eBooks vs. print books and alternative vs. conventional publishing? e-Books are the future, just as many publications are now moving online. But while research is impossible without Google, I still like to hold a book in my hand as opposed to Kindle. In the same way, my morning begins with a newspaper, but then, through the day, news is tracked online. For the moment, both co-exist. Who are some of your favorite authors who have impacted your writing? I’d like to believe my style is my own, but from reading Jeffrey Archer, Lisa Gardner, Sydney Sheldon and Mary Higgins Clarke I’m hoping to perfect the twist in the tale. Like Enid Blyton, I want to let my imagination take flight and engage young minds, like Satyajit Ray, I want to be able to weave word pictures. I also want to create a world like Jhumpa Lahiri which reflects my country and its people, I want to feel emotions like Gulzar saab does in his prose and poetry and from my own devious mind I want to make people sigh, shiver and smile.

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Anupam Kher with a copy of #BadMan

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Gulshan Grover with Producer Rahul Mittra during the Lucknow Launch of #BadMan >>>

(L-R) Gulshan Grover, Mahima Chaudhry, Roshmila Bhattacharya with Swati Chopra, Senior Commissioning Editor, Penguin

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Roshmila Bhattacharya with ShantanuRay Chaudhuri, Senior Copy Editor, Penguin


COVER STORY

In your opinion, what is the most important thing that people DON'T know about your subject/genre,? Since I don’t wish to restrict myself to a particular genre, I would like to use this query to touch on a deeprooted grouse. I wish people wouldn’t dismiss film journalism as “trashy”, “gossipy” and “tabloidy”. It’s sad that people still watch movies for entertainment in our country, but do not always give their matinee idols the respect they deserve. Believe me, it’s not easy to face the camera every day; laugh when you want to cry, and cry, when you are happy, dance when it’s snowing, and sing, when you would rather sleep. I’ve been a part of this world for decades now and I have no hesitation is saying I love my Bollywood, with and without makeup. I also love film journalism in its many different hues so please don’t run it down, we work as hard as others to please. What were your intentions when you were writing this book and how well do you feel you achieved them? AUGUST 2019

The idea of writing this book was to tell the story of an ordinary many whose name went on to light up the marque. To tell those who come to the City of Dreams chasing after a dream to not give up when the going gets tough because maybe your mentor is waiting at the next corner. It’s a story of a boy who walked nine miles to the bus stop and changed three buses to get to college. An actor who struggled for months to get a break and turned down hero roles because he wanted to be the Bad Man. A star who when it was time to enjoy the fruits of success, often stayed home because he had opted to be a single father to his much-loved son Sanjay who worked with Hollywood’s MGM Studio for 15 years and is currently in LA putting together some projects. Bad Man offers a first-person account of how films were made in the eighties and nineties through interesting anecdotes, and most importantly, it’s a story of a mainstream star’s struggles to make a place for himself in another country and another film industry without moving out of India and away from Hindi cinema. STORIZEN MAGAZINE

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If the book can help make a difference to even one life, if it can offer a window to our wonderland and change perceptions about it, I will know I have achieved my goal. To quote one of Gulshan’s famous dialogues, “Dil Garden Garden ho gaya”, now hope some flowers bloom here too.

(As told to Pria) (Visit www.storizen.com for the full coverage!)

About Pria - Young mesmerizing freelance blogger, social enthusiast, an economics graduate from Jharkhand University with Master in Child Psychology. She is hardworking yet crazy, a passionate reader, an ardent music fanatic, an avid caffeine lover, and a maniacal animal lover too. She has been a part of numerous anthologies, articles, and write-ups for newspapers and magazines which are multi-linguistic. She has also written screenplays for YouTube series. pria@storizen.com

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AUGUST 2019


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STORIZEN EVENTS

HOT OFF THE PRESS

ABOUT THE BOOK What do companies like Walt Disney, Apple and Google have in common? How did Apple go from near bankruptcy to becoming the richest company in the world in just fourteen years? How is the nascent success of Airbnb rewiring Marriott’s business model? Is Uber showing us the blueprint of future business? How do the distributed and dynamic capability models powering these businesses distinguish them from traditional competitors? Dynamic Capability Management provides the road map for proactive disruption. It helps modern businesses deal with volatility, rapid growth and new skills in a much smarter manner. This ground-breaking book explains why Dynamic Capability Management is the way to go for the futureready organization. It demonstrates how traditional management practices are evolving to meet the

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needs of a blended workforce. It shatters conventional organizational structures, provides a robust new talent framework and presents a practical blueprint to make any business truly future-ready. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Gyan Nagpal is an award-winning talent strategist and commentator who has deep expertise in researching ongoing changes to the global talent pool. Over the last fifteen years, he has helped some of the most ambitious international organizations build significant business franchises across the Asia Pacific and EMEA regions. He is also the bestselling author of Talent Economics, a book which executive summary major Soundview (Summary.com) rated as one of the 30 best business books of 2013.

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Dynamic Capability Management provides the road map for proactive disruption


STORIZEN EVENTS

HOT OFF THE PRESS An evocative and intriguing interpretation/introspection of Ramayana where Sita’s voice occupies the centre stage and converses with its counter, Bhumika. ABOUT THE BOOK What could Sita have been without Rama? Spending her last days in a remote ashram, a tired and greying Sita can’t help but wonder, ‘What if . . . ?’ What if she hadn’t married Rama? What if she hadn’t gone into exile with him? What if she hadn’t been kidnapped by Ravana, and waited patiently for Rama to rescue her, ever the dutiful wife? What if she hadn’t returned with him to Ayodhya, only to be later discarded to ‘preserve his honour’? Until one day Sage Vishwamitra arrives and shows her who she might have been had she not met Rama – Bhumika, a queen who defies convention.Aditya Iyengar’s latest work is a novel tale of two enigmatic women, Sita and Bhumika, secure in their choices but not defined by them. Provocative, layered and moving, this is a narrative that will resonate with generations to come. 26

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR Aditya Iyengar has been acclaimed for viewing Indian mythological tales – a hugely popular category – through the eyes of often unexplored and peripheral characters. He writes novels, screenplays, and poetry. His previous books include the critically acclaimed The Thirteenth Day, The Palace of Assassins, The Broken Sun and The Conqueror. Iyengar’s earlier books – The Thirteenth Day, A Broken Sun and Palace of Assassins: The Rise of Ashwatthama – have got excellent reader reviews and critical acclaim.

AUGUST 2019


An evocative and intriguing interpretation/introspection of Ramayana where Sita’s voice occupies the centre stage and converses with its counter, Bhumika.


STORIZEN EVENTS

HOT OFF THE PRESS Tools and Weapons The Promise and The Peril of the Digital Age

ABOUT THE BOOK Microsoft President Brad Smith operates by a simple core belief: when your technology changes the world, you bear a responsibility to help address the world you have helped create. This might seem uncontroversial, but it flies in the face of a tech sector long obsessed with rapid growth and sometimes on disruption as an end in itself. Now, though, we have reached an inflection point: Silicon Valley has moved fast and it has broken things. A new understanding has emerged that companies that create technology must accept greater responsibility for the future. And governments will need to regulate technology by moving faster and catching up with the pace of innovation that is impacting our communities and changing the world. In Tools and Weapons, Brad

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Smith takes us into the cockpit of one of the world's largest and most powerful tech companies as it finds itself in the middle of some of the thorniest emerging issues of our time. These are challenges that come with no pre-existing playbook, including privacy, cybercrime and cyberwar, social media, the moral conundrums of AI, big tech's relationship to inequality and the challenges for democracy, far and near. While in no way a self-glorifying "Microsoft memoir," the book opens up the curtain remarkably wide onto some of the company's most crucial recent decision points, as it strives to protect the hopes technology offers against the very real threats it also presents. Every tool can be a weapon in the wrong person's hands, and companies are being challenged in entirely new ways to embrace the totality of their responsibilities. We have moved from a world in which Silicon Valley could take no prisoners to one in which tech companies and governments must work

AUGUST 2019


Tools and Weapons

The Promise and The Peril of the Digital Age


STORIZEN EVENTS

HOT OFF THE PRESS

together to address the challenges and adapt to the changes technology has unleashed. There are huge ramifications to be thought through, and Brad Smith provides a marvellous and urgently necessary contribution to that effort. In Tools and Weapons, Brad Smith takes us behind the scenes on some of the biggest stories to hit the tech industry in the past decade.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS Brad Smith is Microsoft's President. He is responsible for the company's corporate, external, and legal affairs and serves as the company's chief legal officer. He plays a key role in representing the company externally and in spearheading the company's work on critical issues relating to the intersection of technology and society, including cybersecurity, privacy, accessibility, environmental sustainability and digital inclusion. Carol Ann Browne is a Director of Communications at Microsoft. She joined Microsoft in 2010 and is an experienced communicator with a broad background in writing, video, multimedia, and social media work.

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HOT OFF THE PRESS Introducing a strong debut voice in fiction.

ABOUT THE BOOK There is a city on the western shores of India where it no longer rains . . .The sea has invaded its boundaries and its inhabitants reside in a towering structure called the Bombadrome, which hovers above the barren land. Theirs is an artificially equated society; they lead technologically directed lives; they have no memory of the past. They don't remember that this place was once called Bom Bahia, or Bombay, or Mumbai.Except for one man, the last civil servant of the India of old, a witness to the time when it all fell apart, now bitter, filled with regret and thought to be mad. For decades he has remained silent, but now a moment has come - which comes but rarely in history - that prompts him into a final act of service: To remind people of what happened all those years ago, of the events that unmade the city, then the nation, 32

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and finally their lives . . .Sharp, layered and scathing, The Black Dwarves of the Good Little Bay will grab you by the scruff of your neck and force you to listen. Because the sins of the past can never be fully hidden. Because the end can never justify the means. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Varun Thomas Mathew was born just before India began to liberalize her economy, in the Bangalore of yesterday, before all the traffic and concrete had choked the city, when gardens and rainbow bars existed side by side in a climate undisturbed by hate and airconditioning.He studied in several convent and boarding schools, and later at the National Law School of India University. He is a lawyer by profession, a calling he found after having started and sold an ecommerce company, studied the euro crisis on a grant from the German government, and been the election agent and campaign manager for a very unique politician. This is his first book. AUGUST 2019


Speculative Fiction Set In a Dystopian India That Cannot Remember Its Past


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HOT OFF THE PRESS THE HEROIC MISSION UNDERTAKEN BY CAPTAIN MNR SAMANT AND HIS BAND OF BRAVE MEN ABOUT THE BOOK 1971. Sheikh Mujibur Rehman in East Pakistan has just won an electoral mandate to become the prime minister of Pakistan. Accustomed to treating the eastern wing of the country as a colony, the military dictatorship of General Yahya Khan in West Pakistan launches a genocide against the residents of its eastern wing, flooding India with lakhs of refugees. With the violence in East Pakistan reaching a crescendo, the Indian government is faced with a difficult option: remain a mute spectator to the savagery on its eastern borders, or take action and go to war against its western neighbor.

comprising Indian navy officers and divers, eight deserters from a Pakistani submarine, and a ragtag bunch of educated Bengali youth fleeing the genocide – one of India’s largest clandestine operations, meant to destabilize the West Pakistani efforts to bring East Pakistan to its knees. Revealed for the very first time, here is the explosive authentic account of the covert guerrilla operation that went for the maritime jugular of Pakistan, and facilitated the birth of Bangladesh.

Thus was born Naval Commando Operations (X) –

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THE HEROIC MISSION UNDERTAKEN BY CAPTAIN MNR SAMANT AND HIS BAND OF BRAVE MEN


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HOT OFF THE PRESS

ABOUT THE AUTHORS Captain MNR Samant (1930-2019) was a recipient of India’s second-highest gallantry award, the Maha Vir Chakra, for conspicuous gallantry in the face of enemy fire during the 1971 India-Pakistan War. He was Staff Officer, G1 (Nav Ops X) of this covert naval warfare unit. He passed away on 20 March 2019.

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Sandeep Unnithan is an executive editor with India Today where he writes on security-related issues. He is the author of Black Tornado: The Three Sieges of Mumbai 26/11.

AUGUST 2019


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HOT OFF THE PRESS

ABOUT THE BOOK Resurgent India, a sequel to Dr Bimal Jalan's book Emerging India (2012) looks ahead and analyses what needs to be done in light of the significant advances made in politics and governance in one of the fastest-growing developing countries in the global economy. Since 2014, the political profile of the government has changed dramatically. The new government elected in 2019 - either with a full majority or a coalition of parties - will hopefully be in a position to launch significant political reforms. Resurgent India identifies the key priorities that can - and should - be implemented by the new government in national interest, irrespective of the political agenda of the party (or parties) that come to power.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR Dr Bimal Jalan is former Governor, Reserve Bank of India. He has held several positions in the government, including those of finance secretary and chairman of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister. He has represented India on the boards of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

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Resurgent India identifies the key priorities that can and should - be implemented by the new government in national interest, irrespective of the political agenda of the party (or parties) that come to power


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HOT OFF THE PRESS In the 150th year of his Birth, A Gandhian Affair is A History Of India Through The Preoccupations Of Its Cinema Under The Spell Of The Mahatma

ABOUT THE BOOK Sex has always dominated Hindi cinema – but in a curious hide-andseek sort of way.

how cinema was made within welldefined moral fences that were built with dos and don’ts about sex and money.

Sanjay Suri argues that Hindi cinema was the unlikely offspring of the Father of the Nation in this respect – a product of his celibacy and austerity. Gandhi’s heroic retreat from wealth and sexuality was written into the cinema and then elaborately filmed shot by shot. Just about every film brings up these two themes for the hero to then rise above.

In the 150th year of his birth, A Gandhian Affair is a history of India through the preoccupations of its cinema under the spell of the Mahatma.

Suri draws on numerous examples – from Mother India to Do Bigha Zameen; Naya Daur to Pyaasa; Sahib, Bibi aur Ghulam to Guide; and Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge to Lage Raho Munna Bhai – to show

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In the 150th year of his Birth, A Gandhian Affair is A History Of India Through The Preoccupations Of Its Cinema Under The Spell Of The Mahatma


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HOT OFF THE PRESS

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Sanjay Suri has been a London-based journalist since 1990. He studied at Delhi University and the London School of Economics. He is the author of Brideless in Wembley, Naked Rain and Other Poems and 1984: The Anti-Sikh Violence and After.

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HOT OFF THE PRESS From India’s Leading Film Critic, A Thoroughly Entertaining Trip Through India’s Small Towns That Records India’s Incessant Obsession ith Cinema

ABOUT THE BOOK ‘Picture abhi baaki hai…’ If there’s one experience that unites India, it is cinema. In Reel India, award-winning film critic Namrata Joshi journeys through the interiors of the country intimately chronicling little-known stories about the nation’s incessant obsession with the movies. In Lucknow, she encounters a Shah Rukh Khan fan who has embraced an alternate reality in which he lives and breathes the star. In Wai, an entire economy is fuelled by the film industry as the town transforms into a film set. An activist filmmaker in Odisha demonstrates how he teaches local tribal people the basics of his craft, empowering them to train the spotlight on issues threatening their habitat and livelihood. From the fever pitch of the 'first day first show' in makeshift halls to the rivalries of regional cinema, this is India’s immersion in the movies like it’s 44

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never been seen before. Filled with reallife stories that are as fascinating as the revelations and insights they offer, Reel India raises the curtain on the starry-eyed dreams and big-screen passions that live on after the final ‘cut’ is announced. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Namrata Joshi is associate editor cinema and film critic with The Hindu. A member of FIPRESCI, the international federation of film critics based in Munich, she has been a member of the FIPRESCI critics’ jury at multiple film festivals across the world, and has been on the selection committee for films at the International Film Festival of India, Goa, 2008 and 2012. A Charles Wallace Trust fellow and a Chevening scholar, she won India’s National Award for Best Film Critic in 2004. She has contributed pieces to multiple anthologies on Indian cinema and currently resides and works in Mumbai.

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From India’s Leading Film Critic, A Thoroughly Entertaining Trip Through India’s Small Towns That Records India’s Incessant Obsession ith Cinema


STORIZENSPECIAL

TUHIN SINHA BEST SELLING AUTHOR


STORIZENSPECIAL

Modern Intellect Which Shows "Expect the Unexpected" Predictions seldom come true, Tuhin A. Sinha predicted the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A in his last book When The Chief Fell in Love, released in 2018. Now his prediction has come true, Storizen interviews Tuhin briefly about the recent developments.

In your book When The Chief Fell in Love, you had predicted the abrogation of Article 370 and Article 35 A and the reorganization of Jammu & Kashmir by 2030. It has actually happened now. Do you really think it’s the end of all problems ? Some actually believe it will create new problems. Well, let me put it this way. It certainly ain’t the end of all problems. But it is an important milestone in the process of resolving the dispute. It might still take a few years for things to be absolutely normal in the new set up. But the removal of Article 370 and Article 35A will deprive vested interests of their key blackmailing weapon.

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Conclusive resolution happens when people’s mindsets change. And that will happen when the voice of the silent, suffering majority comes to the forefront. This silent majority is firmly with India unlike what the Muftis and Abdullahs of the world would like to have you believe. How will the reorganization of states of J&K as per your book add to the Peace of Nation? It will add not just to peace but the prosperity as well. Just last week the promising Ladakh MP, Tsering Namgyal explained how Ladakh had received step motherly treatment from leaders in Srinagar who never bothered for the development of the region. The reorganization will ensure that both Jammu and Ladakh get their long pending dues.

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Since you blend politics and relationships so well in books, don't you think Love amidst the Politics is the biggest Paradox? Haha.. Well no.. Love makes everybody more humane and compassionate. Compassionate politicians work towards breaking status quo and solving problems, rather than keeping them alive. Poetries do Enhance the Essence of the story at times..And your book is embedded with poems throughout the narrative. .What was the thought behind it? Well, the protagonist of my book, Zaira is a poet. And often she conveys her emotions in rhythmic verses. I have utilized these poems, composed by a friend, Bhavna Berry, in different situations to make the narrative more poignant and ethereal. My favorite poem comes towards the end. It carries the wish for a perfectly happy, peaceful and utopian Kashmir,

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This is the paradise I belong to The woods are my home and the trees my family Mountains my goals, rivers my path Snow my cushions and wind my friends The is the paradise I belong to And it is in the moment right now, with me in your arms that our heartbeats become one, singing the same song Our souls meet and follow the same path. The is the paradise I belong to Where illusions fade away and dreams become reality. After eluding each other for years, This is our moment of permanence Of a belongingness which Even time can't snatch.

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STORIZENSPECIAL

Book Excerpt Kashmir is now a tranquil place, much like it ought to have always been. Article 370, which had inhibited its complete integration into India, stands abrogated. However, its abrogation wasn’t as satisfying as the fact that it happened through the will of the people, in a campaign driven largely by the women of the state. Zaira had personally toured every block of Kashmir and explained the merits and demerits of the article for Kashmir. She had encouraged the people to be big-hearted and opt for sustainable, long-term gains rather than settle for limited, short-term ones. Though the people had their apprehensions, and quite naturally so, they eventually saw reason in our stand. For the ones who remained opposed to removing Article 370, we brought in a fresh law to safeguard their interests. According to this new law, the total land available for sale to non-residents in Kashmir could not exceed 20 per cent of the total land area available in the state. Furthermore, a native of Kashmir could buy a single piece of government land in any other state of the country at a 20 percent discount. Incentives were provided for people in 50

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the valley to settle in Jammu and vice versa, in order to ensure that the two parts of the state did not resemble ghettos anymore. In fact, some 20,000 Kashmiri Pandit families have been resettled in the valley since then and they have been living peacefully in Kashmir. The states of Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh were restructured and two districts of Himachal are now a part of J&K. This gargantuan change was made possible thanks to our party being in power in both the states and at the centre. A decision as path-breaking as this was bound to draw its share of flak. In historical retrospect, I am happy to bear this flak, because I know that by creating a more evenly balanced demographic distribution within Jammu and Kashmir, I have saved the state from many future problems. I owe my decisions to my country and her future generations, not to a motley group of outdated journalists who consider me ‘intolerant’

AUGUST 2019


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How To Overcome The Darker Side Of Success? by Pooja Bagul We all have been constantly running behind success. One achievement or the other, one milestone after other – there is hardly any feeling of satiation. The funny fact is; success means different to each one of us & yet we try to achieve so many things based on the parameters set by others. While there is no harm is being successful & achieving everything you ever desired for, one must be aware of its dark side. Often people fall prey to greed & don’t understand where to stop. If you are one of those people or even if you know someone who has gone through this – make sure you let them know what can be done.

Wait. Pause - Take a

deep breath& pause. In this entire life it is important to know when to pause and take a backseat. The moment you feel that you have overdone things you need to pause. It doesn’t matter how profitable next deal is. JUST PAUSE.

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B alance is the key – Often when

you fall prey to the dark side of success you don’t realize that you have thrown the balance of life out of the window. Get down and bring it back. It is absolutely necessary to have a good balance in life. Irrespective of which walk of life you have come from – balancing everything is important. The moment you go off balance, is the moment you fall on your knees. AUGUST 2019


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T alk it out & address – It is

Photo by Ian Stauffer

important to have your support system well in place. Keep in touch with your friends & family. Often they help you stay on the track. Every time you feel that you are getting overboard, these set of people shall come to the rescue.

K eep in touch – Spirituality is something that keeps your feet on ground. Indulging in yoga, meditation helps you keep calm and see a better picture altogether. So don’t lose your roots & get in touch with spirituality.

S pend

time with under privileged – To understand the value of life & be grateful about it, make it a point to visit a nearby orphanage or talk to less privileged category of the society. This will make you realize the value of creating a good life & the blessings you are blessed with in this life.

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Success is often one of the goals in our lives however, one must understand that there is no end to it. See it as a pathway not destination. One milestone after the other the meaning of success keeps changing. Remember, success is just like salt water – the more you drink the thirstier you become.

A system engineer by profession but an author by passion. Pooja loves to set her taste buds on fire every once in a while. Travelling is her hobby and shopping too! @poojabagul13 @hopelessly_romantic_writer

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Yoga & stress management is a therapeutic guide for those dealing with mental and physical stress, as well as a reference book for healthy living. Although urban work culture has greatly improved the individual economic status, it has grossly diminished


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The Other Side Of Success by Sumana Bhattacharya

“Success is counted sweetest by those who ne'er succeed” - famous lines by Emily Dickinson, reclusive American poet unrecognized in her own time

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he very elusive and ever sought-after Success. Of course, those who don’t succeed, forever crave for success. “Being successful is all that matters,” we hear so often growing up. But what is success?Good education, well-paying job, a house, a fancy car, regular promotions, frequent international vacations etc. etc. Those more talented carve their own success stories – successful young cricketer, best-selling author, singer, actor, entrepreneur etc. etc. Nowadays, we also have highly successful internet entrepreneurs and celebs. Kylie Jenner has certainly carved a new success story, for so many to follow. Most of us ordinary mortals, who don’t have any special talents study hard, work harder, chase success and what comes along with it for the rest of our lives. We keep chasing and sometimes just keep moving around STORIZEN MAGAZINE

in circles, for there’s no end and there’s always so much more to achieve. So, is success a wild goose chase? Sometimes it is, because there’s never enough. Our ambition and societal pressure fuel our innate need to be more and more successful – bigger cars, more expensive vacations, pressure to keep up with peers. It does give us adrenaline rush for a while, but soon becomes a habit or a compulsion. Some handle it well some don’t. Madonna is the queen of pop even in her sixties, teen sensation Britney Spears had a meltdown at 18. Success does not come easy; it takes back a lot. We win some, we lose some. In our mad rush, we forget what the earth smells like, we forget how peaceful starlit nights can AUGUST 2019


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be, we forget to have real conversations, neglect relationships.

medicine in a prestigious institute and just fell off the radar.

Unfortunately, success is often measured in material terms. If you sit back and enjoy the rains instead of working on your next business pitch you are considered a work shirker, a loser. But do we really want to be successful in the terms defined by society?

Success, therefore, is relative. It means different things to different people, but it does claim a prize. We can’t have it all, we need to make some difficult choices. So, choose wisely, go for what you really want and enjoy the race!

Our class reunion last year made me look at success in a completely different light. There we were, together after over a decade, some settled abroad, some top corporate honchos, some back home in Agartala running very successful businesses. When we were growing up success was packaged as a good college education and successful career abroad or in cities like Delhi or Mumbai. Those who stayed behind of course didn’t make the cut and at that point, we felt slightly superior to them. But after all these years, our fancy college= education and jobs didn’t seem to matter. Everyone was successful in their own way. While those in Agartala have turned out to be successful businessmen and entrepreneurs, our class topper who everybody assumed would excel in life, got into drugs while studying

Sumana Bhattacharya is a PR practitioner by profession and a writer by passion. Her style is simple, she likes to write about things she feels deeply about.In her writings she sometimes draws from her experiences of having grown up in a small town, Agartala. She has recently started a blog The Retro Feeling, that stems from nostalgia longing or twinge of guilt for days gone by or left behind. She is an ardent reader of poetry, fiction and mythology. Sumana is a post graduate in English from Hyderabad Central University. She works for a PR agency and lives in Gurgaon.

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STORIZENINTERVIEW

Damini Kane Author, The Sunlight Plane


STORIZEN INTERVIEW

AUTHOR INTERVIEWS Can you tell us about your book? What is it all about? My book, The Sunlight Plane, is a friendship story between two young boys who try to navigate the dangerous world of bullying and child abuse in a wealthy urban neighbourhood. What motivated you to write this book? I’m not sure if there was one definitive thing that made me want to write it, except that the story existed in my head, and insisted on being told. How did you come up with the idea of giving your book this title? Is there any particular story behind it?

AUGUST 2019

The title, The Sunlight Plane, is inspired by a BBC article I read once, about a real plane that was solar-powered, called Solar Impulse II, that was attempting to circumnavigate the earth. The image really struck me, and it later turned inspired the title and turned into a motif in the book. Can you tell us about the characters in the book? Are they influenced by people in real life? Tharush, the main character, is a young but precocious boy who prefers the company of his own imagination. He is shy, but tries to hide it, and can come off as a little aloof. Aakash is a child from a broken home, a victim of abuse, but an empathetic kid with an imagination to match Tharush’s. He loves music more than anything else in the world.

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AUTHOR INTERVIEWS

What's the best response you've had from a reader who's read your book? I’m humbled by the response I’ve had from readers, but my favourites have been those that suggest that my reader has found a home in my story. I believe storytelling is all about creating empathy, that its power is in how it forges relationships between the one who writes and the one who reads, between readers and the characters, between characters and the writer, and between these people and the world. Readers have told me the story has made them laugh and cry, and made them feel emotions they don’t often feel…and that, to me, is the deepest and most personal honour. I appreciate every single person who has taken the time out of their day to read my story. It’s as though I’ve offered a piece of my soul to them, and they have so kindly accepted.

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What do you think of today's Indian writing? I’ve been seeing such a plurality of voices on bookshelves these days. It’s so heartening, so very important. Every time I go to a bookstore, I am so happy that the Indian Writing section always seems to grow bigger. I think Indian writing today is growing ever more diverse and more exploratory, and we should all be excited to see where it goes. What are your interests apart from writing? I play the violin! (Or I’m learning to, anyway…) I’ve also been teaching myself sketching and watercolor painting, though I’m not good at any of it yet. (I will be one day, hopefully.)

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STORIZEN INTERVIEW

AUTHOR INTERVIEWS What are your main research areas as a writer? History. More and more of late, my writing has been going towards fantasy fiction, and my interest in history really helps in world-building and adding realistic details to things. (Ironically, I think fantasy is one genre where realistic detail is absolutely vital for the story to make any sense.) I especially love medieval Indian history, and lately I’ve been reading about ancient trading routes. It simply takes my breath away, how the world used to function without our modern tools and sensibilities. Sometimes I wish I owned a telescope that could look into the past so I could see it with my own eyes. Do you have a routine when you write?

I try to write every day after work, even if it’s just 500 poorly-chosen words before bed. You can always edit bad writing but you can’t edit a blank page, after all. I also give myself a lot of time to brainstorm my ideas— while commuting, over coffee, in the shower, any time that I have to myself is often spent actively thinking of my stories. It makes a huge difference to my productivity as a writer. Can you describe what that writing process is like for you? It’s like bathing my dog. I know what needs to be done. It’s all in my head. Spray him with water, lather, wash it off. Easy in theory. Writing’s the same. I sit at my computer. I have the idea in my head. I’m thinking of the first sentence. I’m reminding myself of the atmosphere I want to create on the page.

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Nine-year-old Tharush notices things: from the ennui trapped in his mother’s intelligent eyes, to the invisible but very real bubble of wealth he lives in. And when he notices, he dreams, creating stories of Sky Pirates and aliens and super fighter planes. New to the upscale residential complex Tharush lives in is Aakash. Shy and secretive, Aakash has unusual skills: he can pick locks, bandage wounds and, like Tharush, creates fantastic tales. Except that Aakash’s stories aren’t about Sky Pirates, or aliens, or super fighter planes. They are lies, and he can tell them very well. When Tharush finds out the truth behind Aakash’s bruises, the two of them are bound together in a toxic secret that might slowly poison them both.


STORIZEN INTERVIEW

It’s all there in my mind.

AUTHOR INTERVIEWS

But much like bathing a dog, things can go wildly off course very quickly. Maybe your dog sees a cat he wants to run at, maybe you hit a dead-end in your plot. Maybe the dog decides to roll around in mud as soon as you wash him clean. Maybe you realize that your scene is logically flawed, or there’s a pacing issue that you’ll have to fix by rewriting the last 10 pages. It’s frustrating, it’s a lot of fun, and in the end, you always feel like you’ve accomplished something. It’s also routine. I have to bathe my dog. I have to write. I brainstorm the idea. I sit and try to write it down. It is simply the most basic of things, but every story, like every dog bath-time, is an adventure.

Storizen Magazine July 2019 Issue Now Available on Kindle

(Interviewed by Swapna Peri)

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AUTHOR INTERVIEWS Who are your favorite authors and books? I’m currently obsessed with Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon, which, as books go, is an accomplishment. I also love everything that V.E Schawb writes, she’s a writer-role model to me. (I practically inhaled her Shades of Magic trilogy in about 48 hours.) What are your favorite pass time activities and hobbies. Binge-watching tv shows is a great way to pass the time and lose sleep, but I also enjoy vanity projects like trying different makeup looks and hairdos. I also love sitting in coffee shops and peoplewatching.

I’m currently obsessed with Priory of the Orange. Tree by Samantha Shannon, which, as books go, is an accomplishment.

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What advice would you give our readers – aspiring writers who want to pursue their careers in writing? Here’s some advice that I wished I’d received when I was younger: Not every story you write is going to be good, but it will still be good practice. Read widely. There is no short-cut to this. If you want to write, you have to read. That is how writers study. Doctors go to medical school, writers read. Be critical of the stories you come across, whether it’s books, or movies, or TV. Ask yourself why those writers took the decisions they took. Why did they kill that character? How did they develop that plot twist? What purpose does that tiny detail serve in the story? Question everything, that’s how you’ll learn. Believe in yourself.

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AUTHOR INTERVIEWS

What are you currently writing? Can you please share few details? I’m trying to plot a fantasy series that will span different timelines, generations, and geographies. Predictably, it’s proving to be quite a challenge, but I’m enjoying the process. For those interested in exploring the various books you have written, where should they start? I’ve only written one book so far, The Sunlight Plane. You can find it on Amazon and at Crosswords Bookstores across the country. If you’d like to follow my creative projects, I post about them quite actively on my Instagram (@daminikane) and my Twitter (@Damini_Kane). Who are some of your favourite authors that you feel were influential in your work? What impact have they had on your writing? 66

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Markus Zusak, for his incredible way of creating atmosphere and building characters. Donna Tartt, who I think is the best descriptive writer alive. (Her book, The Goldfinch, is something I recommend to absolutely everyone.) Jacqueline Wilson, a children’s writer who wrote Best Friends, the first book I’d ever had the pleasure of reading. (If I am a writer today, I owe it all to Wilson, without whom I never would have discovered a love for words.) What do you think is most useful in learning to write? What is least useful or most destructive? I believe it was Neil Gaiman who said (I’m paraphrasing) that writers ought to have a lot of confidence because it protects them from feeling too disheartened at rejection. I agree wholeheartedly. Writing can be devastating at times, and a healthy dose of selfconfidence can really be an asset.

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STORIZEN INTERVIEW

AUTHOR INTERVIEWS So naturally, I believe excessive selfdoubt can be deadly to anyone in the creative fields. It’s healthy to question the quality of your work, because that encourages improvement. But there’s really no point in hating what you create because it ruins the beauty in the act of creation itself. There’s nothing more rewarding than completing a story you’ve been working hard on. Edit it, fix its flaws, sure, but don’t hate it. And don’t hate yourself. Not only does it make the whole experience of writing less enjoyable, but it actively discourages your own creativity. Creativity, after all, is a tree that blooms with love.

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Confession by Harsha Shastry

Photo by Farrel Nobel

F

rom the corner of my eyes, I saw Tanya, my daughter enter the kitchen. I gave her another five seconds and then, as I expected I heard the faint but unmistakable sound of the opening of the small box where I keep my money. I knew exactly how much money she is going take and how she is going to use it. I smiled affectionately, I know my daughter well – better than anybody else in the world. After a few seconds she came back with a guilty look on her face and stood in front of me.

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“Mama, I am going to Ritika’s house, will be back soon.” She said avoiding my eyes. “Sure dear, your dinner will be ready when you are back.” I smiled encouragingly, although I knew where she is going in reality and bade her goodbye. While cooking dinner, just being very curious, I counted the money in my box and I was dead right, she has taken a single note of hundred rupees in the bulging wade; not more, not less. And that’s my sweet daughter Tanya, I just love her. AUGUST 2019


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I know, I could very easily ask my dear hubby to raise her monthly allowance, but I will not do so, just because I know my daughter and she is a gem (in spite of her taking few notes now and then from the wade of my purse). I want to give her the thrill of taking money from my purse and a simple belief - that I never noticed. I have taken (Sorry, I will not use the word stolen here!)Money from my papa’s trouser pocket and mama’s purse, I never thought it as stealing, I would rather say ‘borrow’, if you can understand me! But, there is a thing which is worrying me to death, yes I am really worried. It’s not her money taking act or habit, it’s something else. It’s - it’s just that, she is in her late yet sweet teen and, yes, that is my biggest worry. I still remember the day when I had an utterly serious conversation (for the first time in my life, I mean married life) with my husband, when my daughter was only two years old. “You can’t even tolerate her for just ten minutes; just imagine how would I do it for 24 hours, every single day?” I had literally screamed the moment my husband brought my dirty daughter back from our little garden. AUGUST 2019

Yes, it was a Sunday afternoon. “I – I don’t know Preeti, honestly, I just don’t know. Probably, that’s the reason you’re her mother and I am her father. I so dump; I can handle tens of assholes at the office but not a naughty daughter at home, yes that is my utter weakness, please understand me. I – I just can’t understand what she wants or what she is speaking, she is so – forget it. I am a loser, at least with my daughter, ain’t I?” He finished his last sentence coming very close to me. What can you tell such a husband? All I could do is to kiss him and forgive. Once Tanya returned home, my eyes noticed the little yet remarkable changes in the face of Tanya. I noticed a special glow on her chubby cheeks (courtesy beautician’s facial); I noticed the finely shaped eyebrows and I noticed the trimmed hairs of her. Indeed, she is looking very beautiful, just like Cinderella. I smiled inwardly as I understood that my money had served its purpose well. However, very soon my heart skipped a few beats when I remembered the occasion. Yes, that is the factor which is worrying me to death. I personally feel her father has STORIZEN MAGAZINE

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pampered her too much and given complete freedom. I, on the other hand, can only understand the sensitive issues. “Papa tomorrow is Rohit’s birthday and he is taking us all to the lake city resort for a treat. We shall come back before dark, I have already told mama.” Tanya said between her meals and looked expectantly at her father. Lately, she had cultivated this strange and irritating habit of informing us, rather than asking permission. “Fine with me, enjoy yourself, dear.” That’s all my dear hubby said and I felt like slapping him hard on the face. It was so easy for her, no warning, no advice and most importantly, granted permission in a jiffy, just like that. Come on husbands! You can do better than that; grow up a bit, will you? My mind screamed at once. Once I settled in our warm bed, my hubby brought his hand forward, but I pushed away with such force that he showed the expression of watching a horror movie.

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“What’s now? What did I do?” He asked after recovering from my sudden wrath. “Can you please remember you are a father too?” I snapped. “There is nothing wrong in ‘a father showing love towards his daughter’s mother’, or is there?” he asked sarcastically. That is one thing he is good at. “I am not talking about such silly things. For your kind attention, do you know what you have done during dinner?”I asked sharply. “All I did is to eat my dinner, did I spill too much, I – I never noticed.” He said in utter confusion. Oh god! Why do you make husbands so insensitive? I screamed inwardly. “You gave Tanya permission to spend a whole day with boys, especially Rohit,” I said biting my lower lip. “Come on Adithi, what’s wrong in that? Let her enjoy her life. You and your traditional thoughts!” He said showing a disgust expression on his face.

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“What if something goes wrong?” I challenged at once.

“Hum tum ek kamre mein band ho aur chabi Kho jayye -”

“What can go wrong? Nothing, she is almost eighteen and knows the world better, they are all just friends Adithi. You have been in teens too and you know how your father trusted you so much, you didn’t do anything wrong and so will our daughter, just relax and stop being such an old hag. I had thought of something else for tonight, anyway, now I am feeling very sleepy and thanks for your mood breakers.” My hubby said and covered himself with his thick blanket and turned away his body.

A song interrupted my maddening thoughts, of course, it was my favorite song and my mobile’s ringing tone.

What could she be doing now? My mind asked the same question again and again. Singing and playing Antakshariwith friends or playing indoor games like table tennis or badminton with friends or exploring nature or –“ “Stop, just stop” I screamed outwardly. Nonetheless, my inner mind continued doing its work. “Or kissing Rohit in a secluded place or even better, having her first time S-- (no, I don’t want to say that word aloud, at least in relation with my own daughter.)

AUGUST 2019

“Hello,” I answered anxiously. “Hello Mama, it is really fun here, we enjoyed like anything, and we will leave in an hour and reach home before six, ok? Mama?” Although, instinctively; I knew it was my daughter, I couldn’t answer her since I had noticed unknown fatigue of some kind in her voice. Was it as I predicted? Was it as I feared most? Or has something terrible happened? “Mama I am speaking to you.” She raised her voice suddenly. “I know, I know. Listen, Tanya, are you alright? I – I mean are you fine? Is everything ok?” I asked feeling very awkward. “Of course mama, it is you who sound sick. Are you alright?” She questioned me back. “No – No dear, I am alright, I – I was just worried about

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you. Now that you are fine coming back soon, it will be ok, be waiting for you, and I hope will drop you home.” I recovering myself.

and I will they said

“Yes mama, don’t you worry about me. See you soon, bye.” My daughter, my Tanya, disconnected the line giving me an utter satisfaction of ‘her’ being safe (I just don’t want to think or talk about the latest Breaking news of Television’s cruel screen, at least now). “God! Let her be home safely, take my life in return.” I prayed to God sincerely just because I knew even in just two hours many things can happen.

To be Continued

Harsha Shastry is a dynamic creative writer with over twelve years of experience in the areas of creative script writing including animation screenplay, lyrics, Novellas, Novels, copy ads, contents, jingles, game concepts, and dialogues. He has written numerous stories/screenplays for very acclaimed and popular cartoon shows like Choota Bheem, Motu and Patlu. His stories have been published in international journals like “Earthen Lamp Journal.” His debut novel “The eight FBian hearts” is being published by Numerique Publication. Apart from being a writer, Harsha is a humanitarian who believes in the strength of each individual irrespective of race and gender. @harsha-shastry-0295072b

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Late one November night, the mutilated corpse of a young Finnish tourist is found in a public garden in Pune. It looks like a case of brutal rape and murder, but Senior Inspector Saralkar and PSI Motkar find themselves probing further delving deeper.


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Fall Forward by Anandbabu An epoch that visualize the life of 2 young engineers (Anand-Me & Raja- My Friend) who endeavors to bring out their best with all high, low and struggles they traveled. To my beloved Readers, “Struggle, a default option in all our life and there is no way that I was an exception” All would have faced some sort of struggle in their life, so do I where I had not some but many. It took a longer time to understand that each and every struggle teaches a new lesson, leaves you with a matured mind and most importantly it makes you “stronger to the strongest”. A stronger person, who falls often, rises on his feet again just to face the difficulties, the failure and to move forward by overcoming it every single time. And to start my journey, I joined my engineering in one of the colleges in Tamil Nadu. That feel of being an Engineer started from the day 1 of my joining. We all 74

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“Struggle, a default option in all our life and there is no way that I was an exception.” AUGUST 2019


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know and also felt that the college days are the happiest days in our lifespan and it was the same for me “a heaven on earth feel”, is all I could say. The happy era of my life begins here…., Class fun, group talks, gang forming, bullying friends, infatuations, love, laugh, fights, sharing foods and clothes, mass bunks, first day first show movies, visiting friends place on vacations, attending all happy and sad moments of friends family, and what not the best part of my life…., Couple of years passed and we were in the third year of Engineering. There started “the twist”Our friends started participating in symposiums conducted by other colleges, where Symposiums are the group of events that has paper presentations, project presentations; quiz competitions, poster presentation and some knowledge based fun activities. Most of our friends started winning prizes from other colleges; we were still the same as our first day of college. And, yes it was really

AUGUST 2019

interesting for us to see our friends participating in all events and winning prizes competing with other college students. This created an interest in me and my friend. We decided to participate in paper presentations we actually didn’t knew that it wasn’t a straight forward affair. It was a long tough process in fact. We need to prepare the concept or the proposed ideas which we are going to present, wait for other colleges to call for papers, send paper to the symposium panel, wait for the paper sent to be selected by the symposium panel(out of 100’s of papers received they would hardly select 10-15 papers) and then an email confirming the paper selection, on duty permission from our college…, yes it is a very long process. We spent more time on it and somehow managed to finalize few concepts and prepared a good power point presentation. To be frank, it was Raja who was preparing these papers and I was just assisting him.

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We started sending our papers to different colleges. Luckily, our paper got selected in almost all the colleges where we have sent.

in few other colleges. We tried to improve our weaknesses. It moved from one college to other and still we were waiting for our right time.

We went to the selected colleges to present the paper. And it was our first presentation, we were really excited to present our first paper. Eagerly waiting for our turn in the auditorium, and other teams started presenting their papers. We were watching it and also reviewing our points to speak out. It was our turn and we went on to the stage and now we were literally blank. It was a stammer show for others, we were not able to speak what we are supposed to. I could see people laughing at us, but still we waited for the valedictory to get the participation certificate.

Remembered few humorous moments on the way -

It was a mere shameful situation for us. Sometimes situations show you who you are and what your actual capability is.But still we did not give up, we waited for another opportunity. We got selected for Paper presentations

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1. Literally slept in the waiting hall until our turn came and just attended the stage to get the participation certificate. 2. Things improved, able to present the paper but failed when it came to queries.

3. More than what we spoke, we could always see the laugh of the audience. Finally we started accepting the fact that it’s not our cup of tea. We were actually not fit for it. We were eligible only for participation not for winning. We stopped sending papers to other colleges. Infact, we never concentrated again on any symposiums. But God had different plan. We got invitation from a famous college at Tirunelveli, we sent the paper long back and it came in the exact time is what we thought.

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Initially we thought to drop this event, but then never felt like giving up. Here we started a new beginning. It was an overnight journey from our college to Tirunelvelli, and our intention was for sightseeing the new place. Reached our destination for the day, waiting in the auditorium and this time it was not an eager wait. Finally it’s our turn for presentation, we both went on to the stage. This time things were different and unbelievable. It was a very confident presentation and the best was the queries raised were all answered clearly. We also participated in other events like quiz competition and marketing competition. I think it was a day where God had a plan to favor only me and my friend; we were Runners up on quiz, won Winners on marketing event.

Get your copy of Storizen Magazine July 2019 on Amazon Kindle NOW!

It was Valedictory. Actually this was the first time we were eagerly waiting till prize distribution. There was a voice from MoC table, “And the first prize for paper presentation goes to Anandand Raja from XYZ College”. AUGUST 2019

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We also got prize in other two events, quiz and marketing. We literally stole the show. Every time our names were called, whole auditorium applauded. It was a real moment of proud for us as well as our college. As the proverb goes “failures are the stepping stone for success”, this was the first time we experienced such sweetness of successful moment after facing continuous failures. We went to the stage 3 times to get the prize, shield and medal for the three different events. Many students congratulated personally as well. We bought the famous Tirunelveli ‘Halwa’ for our friends. We were missing our parents. How great it would be for a parent to see their son being honored from another college!

Author Bio Anandbabu, is a fervid wordsmith who loves to write and his vision for writing is simply that "If I can touch anyone’s life with my writing by sharing my life experiences , I am happy about it" His blog Braceforimpact.in is based on the people and experiences he has crossed through. His quote to success is Hardwork which he gently says as "I learned the value of hardwork by working hard". http://www.braceforimpact.in

We failed and failed in multiple colleges but failed to realize that each failure led us a step ahead. We all fall in our life at some or the other point of time. Every fall in our life actually takes us forward. Every time we fell, we should make sure to stand again with a new hope, new confidence. 78

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Two corpses . . . a woman lying dead on her bed, a man hanging from the ceiling fan. A suicide note cum murder confession. And a name . . . Shaunak Sodhi.When the case comes their way, Senior Inspector Saralkar has just been diagnosed with hypertension and PSI Motkar is busy with rehearsals of an amateur play.


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Bach, a Hand, and a Dress with Pockets A personal adventure in creativity by Damini Kane The fashion industry is sexist trash and women’s clothes are impractical. For once in my life, I would like to buy a dress that has pockets so I’m not holding my wallet and phone and keys in my hands like a monkey that has just robbed a picnic. Jeans are no better. Women’s jeans have tiny pockets— often fake—which only exist for the aesthetic appeal. The fashion industry is obsessed with aesthetics over functionality, but that’s a rant for another article. I’m wearing stupid jeans with useless pockets and typing this with sore hands, still

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recovering from violin class. That’s my Saturday routine. I wake up, travel halfway across the city to learn violin, and then sit in a café to write. I know—bougie cliché, I’m sorry. Sometimes I’ll sketch, too. I have a little wooden human figurine to help me with body proportions, and a lump of malleable grey rubber that artists call a kneaded eraser. I own a cube of rosin, an amber-colored lump of stone that you rub over a violin bow to get better sound, and a couple of pretty notebooks for my stories. I’m as virulently ‘hipster artist’ as you can imagine, but it’s taken me a lot of self-reflection to get to this point, so I’m going to flaunt it.

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and depression have gone out of control, and suddenly, Writer Girl is alone in a strange country, doubting her writing skills, and hating every minute of being alive. I’d…I’d attempted drawing before. A few times in the last year. I was bad at it. But in a desperate attempt to find some meaning in life again, I picked up a pencil and started to seriously practice sketching. Imagine that! Writer Girl, sketching? All my life, people have told me I have a talent for writing. I don’t know if that’s true or not—you be the judge—but either way, it shaped my childhood identity. I was Writer Girl. I Wrote. I wrote poems and stories. I Wrote novels. I Brainstormed. I had online usernames with variations of ‘LightningWrites’. The writing was the one thing I thought I was good at, my only personality trait, my defining characteristic. Sure, there were other things I wanted to try— sketching, music—but I didn’t dare. I wasn’t talented at those. I was Writer Girl. Writer Girl didn’t draw. It took a shattering mental health crisis to convince me otherwise. Picture this: I’m in England, I’m 22, I’m studying something I thought I would love, but my anxiety

AUGUST 2019

Crazy. I benefitted from having close friends who were all artists. They chipped in to give me advice, feedback, offering insight and encouragement. I’d always wanted to be able to draw. Perhaps now, when I was doubting my writing abilities, I could finally learn, talent or not. My sketchbooks are filled with trashy attempts at human figures. I even did my first ever Inktober (for the uninitiated, it’s a drawing challenge that takes place on a global scale every October.

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The only goal is to draw every day, usually from pre-assigned prompts.). All of my Inktober doodles are awful, but I adore them. I started using my newfound knowledge of sketching to draw the characters in my stories. Sketching, it seemed, was helping Writer Girl get her groove back. Around this time, I also started learning how to sew. This was because I was in England, in love with all of the clothes, and also socially-aware enough to realize the ethical dilemma of fast fashion. Maybe I can learn how to make clothes, that way I won’t buy them from evil brands that profit off underpaid labor from Asian countries, I thought. Sewing was another thing that lifted the depression off my shoulders. I stitched a skirt for myself. I still have it. It’s red, with a gold buckle, and it’s cuter than anything you’d find in a store. By the end of my year abroad, I’d come to the conclusion that Writer Girl was a stone-cold idiot. After all—how could I have

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convinced myself that my only talent, the only thing that made me worthy as a human being, was prose? I was improving my sketching every day. I’d sewn myself a skirt. Was it possible that the idea of ‘talent’ was a hoax? Like the Loch Ness monster? The answer, of course, is yes. Talent is horsepoop. It’s fed to us from childhood to make us feel bad about ourselves. To keep us in line. We are always fed stories about Da Vinci painting the Mona Lisa, and never about Da Vinci practicing basic shapes. There’s nothing romantic about Da Vinci or Michelangelo or Titian figuring out how to draw ahead. No, we want to believe in Genius. It’s easier, I think. Easier to believe that we can’t do something because we weren’t born with the ‘Gift’. Okay, so if talent doesn’t exist, then does that mean I can do anything I want? Yes, actually. Writer Girl could draw, and Writer Girl could sing, and Writer Girl could climb a mountain if she wanted. So—what did Writer Girl want to do?

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honestly, who cares? I live for violin class. I count the days. And after months of regular practice, I’m starting to learn Bach. BACH. BACH. Me. I am playing Bach.

I wanted to learn the violin. I had become obsessed with it over the last couple of years. So much so that I’d created stories about them. I’d started drawing them. I have pages and pages of sketchbook paper dedicated to doodles of violins. Just the sound of them made my heart fly to the sun. I wish I was a violinist, I wish I was a violinist, I was constantly thinking, imagining myself on stage in front of two thousand people, all of them watching as I serenaded them with the most difficult musical instrument in the world. I am an absolutely trash violinist. In fact, I feel embarrassed even calling myself that. I am no violinist; I am simply a person who owns a violin and goes to a class. Maybe someday I’ll be good enough to earn that title, but not today. But

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In my second violin lesson, my professor taught me how to hold the bow. It’s actually more complicated than it sounds. Your thumb needs to be in a 90-degree angle against your middle finger, your pinkie needs to rest on top of the bow, and your fingers need to be artfully curved, no part of them tense and flat. There’s a science to it; your grip needs to be loose and graceful, but also firm, providing balance. When it’s done right, it looks so pretty. I feel like a dancer. So I drew it once. I drew two sketches of my own hand, holding a bow, just to figure out how the finger placement goes. I showed them to my teacher. “Oh,” he said, “you draw too?” “Yep,” I replied, bursting with pride.

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He nodded. “The next time you draw the bow hold, your knuckles should be a little higher.” He demonstrated by raising his wrist and lifting the roof of his palm, his fingers curled around his own bow. I almost laughed. Two years ago, I wouldn’t have thought myself capable of drawing, lot less playing an instrument.

Follow Damini at -

@daminikane @damini_kane @kanedamini

Or drawing myself playing an instrument. But here I was, no longer just Writer Girl, but as someone who felt fearless in pursuing any interest that captured my imagination. I’d given up the idea of talent. I was free. I haven’t sewn any clothes lately. I have a machine, I just need the time, and a teacher. But I’ll do it. I love clothes, I hate fast fashion, and the urge to create something new is still alive inside me. And I know what I’ll make, too. It’ll be a dress with a flared skirt and a sweetheart neckline. It will have pockets big enough to carry my drawing pencils and my rosin, but not big enough to fit my new identity. That I don’t mind carrying in my hands. 84

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Senior Inspector Saralkar is back at his desk after spending a rather annoying week at a ‘Secrets of Living’ course, especially for police officers and he is itching for some action now. Luckily, an exciting new case turns up right away!


The Murder of Sonia Raikkonen

BOOK REVIEW

by Salil Desai

by Swapna Peri

T he plot of the story is set in the Pune

city with Senior Inspector Saralkar and his sub-ordinate Motkar as the main characters. The gross and disturbing murdered body of a Finnish woman is found in the public garden of Pune. Saralkar and Motkar arrive at the site to inspect and find their first clue, white sandal. Both of them start suspecting people who are involved in this frightening murder. As they are busy in suspecting the victims, Saralkar gets a call from his old friend and colleague Patange. He seeks help from him to solve another murder mystery. As he reaches the site he will see an old

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man’s dead body which is stabbed vigorously and leaves the body in a bad condition. Saralkar finds another white sandal in this site and finds that there is a connection between these two brutal murders. As the two cops cross the levels while solving the cases, they find some dreadful and scary truths behind these crimes. What is the connection between those two murders and who is behind it? How the police duo will solve the cases? Read this suspense and nail-biting story ‘The Murder of Sonia Raikkonen: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery’ by Salil Desai

Yamini Pustake Bhalerao

AUGUST 2019


STORIZENREVIEW

2. The two different cases and the relation between them are shown in a remarkable way. 3. The suspense is maintained until the ending of the story. What I didn't like: The thrill and suspense are maintained very well but the story was dragged in between and a bit complex which will leave the readers confused. But overall the story is interesting and good.

Book Cover: The cover of the book is an image of a corpse of a woman lying on the ground with blood stains around it.

BOOK REVIEW

What I like: 1. The police duo is the essence of this story. Most importantly, the humor and zeal to solve this case will grab the attention of the readers.

Book Title: The title of the book is ‘The Murder of Sonia Raikkonen: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery’ is intriguing Language & Grammar: A clear language with neat and uncomplicated grammar is used in the book My Final Verdict: An interesting book with a unique storyline which leaves the readers with an awesome feeling.

Narration: The narration is done in a good way and it could be more interesting and enthusiastic.

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Book Review

Rating Book Title: 3/5 Book Cover: 3/5 Plot: 3/5 Characters: 3/5 Narration: 3/5 Language & Grammar: 3/5 Final Rating: 3/5

Swapna worked as SAP Consultant for 10 years in Major IT companies. Reading has always been her passion and occasional painting her hobby. She decided to quit her job, look after the family and pursue her hobby of reading and painting in a larger way. Thus, her big leap into book reviewing has paved a way and has been successful to date. Reading challenges interest her a lot and visiting book fairs is her favorite thing. She believes that there is no good back or bad book, but only books. Writing unbiased reviews is her strength and she is appreciated by fellow reviewers and readers for the same. An anthology of musings with her paintings is her pending dream!

@swapna.peri @sappy_dreamz_unlimited @swapna508

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3 and a Half Murders

BOOK REVIEW

by Salil Desai

the cases which includes betrayal, cliques, greed, and grudge. Within no time they get the information regarding the next to be the victim and set their journey to save him,

by Swapna Peri

This is another case of Saralkar and Motar, where they find the two dead bodies in a single room. One woman’s body lying on the bed and other body hanging from the ceiling fan. They find a note in the same room which clears their doubt. It is a murder confession and a suicide note. The man who hung himself kills his wife for being unfaithful with him. As the case unfolds, the inspectors will soon get a clear understanding of the case and it is connected to the case of a murdered boy from another state. Soon they will dig into the case as much as they can and find out the dark side of 90

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Will Sarkar and his sub-ordinate solve the mystery? What is the secret behind these three murders

Yamini Pustake Bhalerao

AUGUST 2019


STORIZENREVIEW

2. The case-solving method is catchy and the reader will not lose the track. 3. Unlike other thrillers, the story is not predictable and it is unique. What I didn't like: There are no negative points to be observed, but the narration could be more interesting which can catch the mind of the readers. Narration:

Book Cover: The cover of the book is an image of a person hanging from the ceiling with a bloody shadow and stains of blood on the floor.

BOOK REVIEW

What I like: 1. The story is a roller-coaster ride which takes the readers to various levels of investigation and leaves with a surprise and thrill feelings.

Book Title: The title of the book is ‘3 and a Half Murders: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery’ is mysterious. Language & Grammar: A clear language with neat and uncomplicated grammar is used in the book My Final Verdict: An interesting book with a unique storyline which leaves the readers with an awesome feeling.

The narration is done in a good way and it could be more enthusiastic.

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Book Review

Rating Book Title: 3/5 Book Cover: 3/5 Plot: 3/5 Characters: 3/5 Narration: 3/5 Language & Grammar: 3/5 Final Rating: 3/5

Swapna worked as SAP Consultant for 10 years in Major IT companies. Reading has always been her passion and occasional painting her hobby. She decided to quit her job, look after the family and pursue her hobby of reading and painting in a larger way. Thus, her big leap into book reviewing has paved a way and has been successful to date. Reading challenges interest her a lot and visiting book fairs is her favorite thing. She believes that there is no good back or bad book, but only books. Writing unbiased reviews is her strength and she is appreciated by fellow reviewers and readers for the same. An anthology of musings with her paintings is her pending dream!

@swapna.peri @sappy_dreamz_unlimited @swapna508

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WE DON'T SELL BOOKS

We help you increase your book sales.

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Killing Ashish Karve

BOOK REVIEW

by Salil Desai

murdered business man’s life. Right from Ashish’s wife to the strangers who are merely involved in his routines, he suspects everyone.

by Swapna Peri

S enior

Inspector Saralkarawaits for the critical and interesting case to solve. One such murder mystery will come in his way and he sets his journey to untangle the case with the help of his sub-ordinate Motkar. A dead body of a local businessman AshishKarve is found in the backseat of his car. The scene clearly shows that it is suicide. Even Motkar suspects the same about the case, But Saralkar will find that there is something devious about this case and starts to dig another side of it. As he solves the levels of his investigation he starts to suspect the people who are involved in the

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To solve the case he checks all the possibilities to fetch the victim. Will the Saralkar solve this case with the proper evidence and clues? Is it a murder or suicide? Read this interesting and thrilling book ‘Killing Ashish Karve: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery’ by Salil Desai.

Yamini Pustake Bhalerao

AUGUST 2019


STORIZENREVIEW

2. The case and the secrets behind it will leave the readers with an excellent feeling. 3.The case-solving techniques and suspecting the main reason/person behind this case is interesting. 4. The narration was good and the scenes are designed beautifully. 5. The author designed this story in an excellent way so that the reader will travel with the characters of the story. What I didn't like:

Book Cover: The cover of the book is an image of a blood-stained car mirror reflecting the hand of the dead body.

BOOK REVIEW

What I like: 1. The plot and the characterization are very well done.

Book Title: The title of the book is ‘Killing Ashish Karve: An Inspector Saralkar Mystery ‘ is intriguing. Language & Grammar: A clear language with neat and uncomplicated grammar is used in the book. My Final Verdict: An interesting thriller and a story packed with suspense. The book is apt for readers who like to read thriller and suspense stories.

In particular, there are no negative points but in some areas, the story was dragged a bit. Narration: The narration is done in a good way and it could be more interesting and enthusiastic.

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STORIZEN REVIEW

Book Review

Rating Book Title: 3/5 Book Cover: 3/5 Plot: 3/5 Characters: 3/5 Narration: 3/5 Language & Grammar: 3/5 Final Rating: 3/5

Swapna worked as SAP Consultant for 10 years in Major IT companies. Reading has always been her passion and occasional painting her hobby. She decided to quit her job, look after the family and pursue her hobby of reading and painting in a larger way. Thus, her big leap into book reviewing has paved a way and has been successful to date. Reading challenges interest her a lot and visiting book fairs is her favorite thing. She believes that there is no good back or bad book, but only books. Writing unbiased reviews is her strength and she is appreciated by fellow reviewers and readers for the same. An anthology of musings with her paintings is her pending dream!

@swapna.peri @sappy_dreamz_unlimited @swapna508

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STORIZEN MAGAZINE

AUGUST 2019


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STORIZEN POETRY

The Emergence by Vidya Shankar Anguish and uncertainty ripped me apart, anger and inadequacy Writing bold lines in my mind. The depression that had stricken me was peeling off layers from my being As I shed tear after tear, not knowing why or where from they came. The ones dear to me could not understand this stranger I had become, They only felt ripples of the searing dread that caused a chasm. I screamed for help, but only my scream was heard, The words lost in the expressions of terror, overwhelming the message. Hands that reached out for a help that never came, Gnawed in helplessness at a faceless visage. Cowering in despair, I allowed myself to sink deeper Into the darkness of the quagmire the exhaustion was drawing me into. Little did I realise it was at the Feet of the One I had fallen — The only one who could ever save me. Krishna, in His inimitable style, sat on a mound, tall and dignified, The epitome of empathy.

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STORIZEN POETRY

A pleasing picture, seemingly unfazed, unexcited, unfettered By the traumatic drama played out at His Feet, He only too well understood the beauty of the soul Wrapped in the gloom-ridden shroud. A million pieces was what His heart would rip into, Every time the stream of tears began their laughter-riot. Yet His calm was what gave me the strength to endure The prodding that vexed me into extinguishment. Then it happened, a moment of surrender, the relinquishment Of ego, when, in deep, unbearable anguish, I clutched His Feet. “Save me, please!” Even as the words formed in my mind, I was transformed — Blessings of flowery showers miracled the watery grave Into a fertile placenta and the woeful shroud into a cocoon. I was a larva, sprouting vibrant wings, emerging under His protective gaze To claim my latent passion, a beautiful poetic encore. Thus revealed, the butterfly I was, fluttered on to His shoulder, And as He played mesmerising notes on His egoless instrument, I swayed in the exhilaration of forgiveness Accepting that the struggle was only mine to emerge from. AUGUST 2019

Vidya Shankar is a poet, writer, blogger, motivational speaker, English language teacher, instructional designer, content developer, and yoga enthusiast. An active member of poetry circles, her work has appeared in national and international literary magazines, literary platforms and anthologies. Her first book of poems 'The Flautist of Brindaranyam', a collaborative effort with her photographer husband, Shankar Ramakrishnan. Herself a ‘book’ at the Human Library, Vidya Shankar lives a life of purpose by using the power of words, both written and spoken, to create awareness about environmental issues, mental health and the need to break the shackles of an outdated society.

@shanvidwinsalways @vidya.shankar.author

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Photo by Warren Wong


STORIZEN POETRY

Shadow Side of Greatness by Dipanjana Nath In the softness of the morning dew In the chirping of the birds few You walk along –nice and tall Giving me the sense of the life new When the sun of my life shines brighter Your baleful presence turns tighter Increasing the proximity dangerously And turning me into a helpless fighter Your scornful feature abstract Tries all its ways to distract But I stand fearless And my eyes refuse to contract When I walk faster to catch up with life You chase me steady soaring my fright Throttling me into a grip tight I wish for a soothing rain I look for a dark cloud I desire you to vanish Miles away behind the unknown crowd I know you are ambitious But I am hopeful I am helpless But still soulful AUGUST 2019

You laugh at me with dreadful eyes But I must tell without me you lose your guise You are just a contour and I am real You might do the alchemy But I dwell I am the greatness and you are my shadow I am focused but you do so much ado You show me the sad and lows Welting me strange blows You sneer and release the other side of the coin But you often forget that if I leave the world You will have no one to join

A software engineer by profession and a writer by passion, Dipanjana likes to pen down her thoughts during her free hours. In 2015, Dipanjana Nath published her first romance novel “Scandalous Disclosure” and continued her passion by writing a collection of short stories, “Unrequited”, in 2018. The author’s latest venture, her upcoming book, “Love Will Find a Way” is a mystery-romance novel.

@NathDipanjana STORIZEN MAGAZINE

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Photo by Nicholas Sampson


STORIZEN POETRY

The Bitter Path Of Success by Aparna Mukherjee The taste of success Is indeed sweet It takes years of efforts To embrace the victorious treat. Who does not want to wear The glorious success crown? To get the shine From the glitters of glory, In the muck of offence A person has to drown. The journey of success Not so easy for all You need to walk through The dark tunnel To see the darting light Later, on you which will fall. Failures and low spirits You need to defeat The thorny path The storms on your way You have to meet. Fear and negative thoughts Once you beat It is then the success Will eventually kiss your feet. AUGUST 2019

In a few words, Aparna defines a woman who beholds high aspirations and firmly believes in expanding her horizon. She holds a Master degree in English from Mumbai University. By profession, she is an online content writer and blogger who writes informative articles for various UK and US blogs and websites. Her poems got published in the digital Reflection Magazine and in the Indian literature website named Facestory's.com. She is a budding author too. Her first story on romantic theme got published in a book named "Memoirs Of Love". As a person, she is open-minded, downto-earth and amiable in nature. Her world revolves around creativity. She wishes to make her mark in the literary world, hoping to leave an indelible imprint on her readers' minds.

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