- PonderingTwo April 2014 ~ Pondering Two The title of your home page

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Author: Dhruv Gajjar
Published by: Write India Publisher
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 978-93-84180-07-2
No. of Pages: 212
Price: INR 150

Summary: WORDS are mightier than anything else in this world. Sometimes they serve as liaisons between between two distinct hearts, and sometimes they shatter two people irreparably apart. But when they are woven into promises and hopes, they give rise to something that lasts forever. They change lives. 

I had almost lost myself, when she brought me back to life - with her promises. She was dying with a dreadful tumour, but she had the authority to pull those last strings that brought me back to her. She was gradually dying, and every night before going to sleep - she would take a portion of my heart, my soul and my words. She would take a promise from me every night that made me who I'm today. She gave me a new life. One of those promises was to compile this novel that took me to an eventful journey in which I discovered several people, like me, who too were keeping promises.

Review: 'Keeping the Promises' is one of those books which I can read again and again and relish things about Love and True Love. And believe me each time it will give you some fresh perspective about Love and also ignite few of those memories shared with the loved one. It is a poignant tale of unconditional love, sacrifices and promises through doing things for the person whom you love so dearly. There are times when the words will move you to tears especially the epilogue and the last letter of M. Each and every characters are very lively, endearing and etched out to perfection. The book is difficult to keep down until and unless each and every word has been read.

The writing is very crisp and clean with a good control over vocabulary which is rare among the debut authors although some proof reading errors have been noticed. The page quality is nice but the page colour could have been different instead of white. It would probably give a much better feel and reading experience. The cover design is also apt and goes with the title.

Overall: All those who like reading love stories must definitely grab the book ASAP. Am pretty sure you'll like and relate to the book.

Ratings: 4.5/5*

Friday, 25 April 2014

Today, at Pondering Two we have Kiran Manral, a multi-talented author sharing with us some interesting things on writing, crushes and her new book, Once Upon A Crush. 

Kiran Manral is an author as well as a blogger who has worked as a journalist before she quit to be a full time mommy. Her blogs www.thirtysixandcounting.wordpress.com and www.karmickids.blogspot.com are both in Labnol's list of India's top blogs. She blogged at Tehelka on gender issues. She is also considered a 'social media star' on twitter by TOI and IBNLive named her as among the 30 interesting women to follow on twitter and among the top 10 Indian Moms to follow on twitter for 2013. 

Post 26/11, she founded India Helps, a volunteer network to help disaster victims post 26/11 and has worked on long-term rehabilitation of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack victims and 13/7 Mumbai bomb blast victims, amongst others. She is a part of core founding team behind CSAAM (www.csaawarenessmonth.com) and Violence Against Women Awareness Month (www.vawawareness.wordpress.com), two very well received social media awareness initiatives across twitter and blogosphere. 

Her debut novel, The Reluctant Detective, was published by Westland in 2012. 

She has also starred in the Dove ad as well as in Tangerine Colours of Life

In conversation with her in an attempt to know her more in her own words:

Pondering Two welcomes you. It is a pleasure to host you on the blog and thank you so much. 

1. Tell us something about your journey from blogging to writing? And what made you choose writing and be an author?

                The journey from blogging to writing was actually the journey from writing to blogging to writing because blogging is writing and I have been a journalist and a feature writer in the past before I quit when I had my son. So it was rather like coming full circle for me. 

2. What is your book ‘Once Upon A Crush’ all about and how is the book different from the various other books available in the market?

                   Once Upon A Crush is about a girl who will turn 30 soon, and as is natural, her parents are concerned about her settling down in holy matrimony and searching for the perfect spouse for her. She has a terrifying crush on a man in her office, and the book is about all that happens in the process. How is it different from the other books in the market? Ah well, I like to think it is a story every girl who has had a crush on someone inappropriate at her workspace will identify with it. 

3. How did it occur to you to write this book? Any particular instance or a thought that went into writing this book? And how was the experience writing this book?

                  I was looking at writing something fun and a quick read, and I happened to be chatting to few friends who were single and decrying how difficult the dating scene is and how tough it is now to find spouse material, and the dichotomies where some of them were confused between settling down in arranged marriages or waiting for Mr Right to turn up. The experience was fun, it was putting myself into a different situation completely which was interesting. 

4. Throw some light about the central character of your book?

                    Rayna De my protagonist is a working professional girl in her late twenties, she's living alone in Mumbai and has her parents back in Kolkata. She also is finding herself as the book goes along, discarding old notions and picking up new ways of being. 

5. Since your book involves office romance, what is your take on it?

                 My take on office romance is that it is often inevitable when people are thrown together for extended periods of time to feel attracted to each other, but it can get messy if things don't work out, so keep the PDA out of the office, stay professional in the office, and be prepared to look for another position if the romance falls through unpleasantly. 

6. At times it gets very confusing to identify a crush, an infatuation, and love. So according to you how to differentiate between them so as to get some clear picture?

                   I guess, simply by the intensity. Crushes are ephemeral, then they move on to being infatuations and if the infatuations become all consuming and last for more than a few months, you might wonder if it has morphed into love. But then, I'm no authority on this. 

7. Your first book ‘The Reluctant Detective’ is completely different from ‘Once Upon A Crush’ in terms of genre? So how easy or difficult did it get while switching from one genre to another? Also, what is your preferred genre of writing?

                      I think writing is like flexing a muscle, you need to give it every kind of workout. I enjoy writing whatever flows naturally from the fingers on the keyboard. I read everything and write everything.

8. Do you plan to dabble into writing a different genre, say horror in future?

                    Already have. Now for it to find a publisher. 

9. What authors do you like to read?

                  My favourites are P G Wodehouse, Stephen King, Mark Twain, J K Rowling and so so many more...

10. One thing that comes on your mind when I say the following?

(a) Author - Creator
(b) Books - Life
(c) Blogging  - Connecting
(d) Love - Eternal

11. Any particular advice that you would like to give to new authors on the block especially the bloggers turned authors?

                     Keep reading. Keep writing. The more you read, the more your writing will be enriched by it. 

A huge thank you for sharing some interesting things on writing and here's wishing you all the very best for your future endeavours.

So what's say people? Ready to grab the novel. eh?

You can order the book online from:   Flipkart      Crossword    Infibeam    Amazon


Monday, 21 April 2014

"A professional writer is an amateur writer who didn't quit." ~ Richard Bach

And so here I am in the process of being a professional writer. 

I have been tagged in an author's blog hop by Janaki Nagaraj who blogs at janakinagaraj.com who is also one of the contributors along with me in an anthology called 'Minds @ Work 2'.

I first met her at one of the most privileged open Blogger-Author- Rendezvous with author Ravi Subramanian. And from there we met at each other's blog and various blogger meets. Apart from being a warm and a cordial person, the one thing that catches my attention is her Poetries and the way in which she expresses in those limited words is something I always crave for. You can also hop on to her above mentioned blog for more poetires as she is taking part in National Poetry Writing Month.

As a part of this blog hop, I am suppose to answer some questions too. So here it goes:

1) What am I working on?

At present I am concentrating on reading more and more, penning sonnets and haiku and honing my skills at writing short stories and eventually taking the most desired step of writing a novella. At present you can find my works in three upcoming anthologies of short stories and also one of my sonnet is published in the very first issue of Writer's Ezine Magazine

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

From what I have come to know from my fellow friends and authors, my writing is a mixture of subtle erotica and romance served together. 

3) Why do I write what I do?

For self satisfaction.

4) How does my writing process work?

When I think to write something I need utter silence for my thoughts to get penned. Also I like to write impromptu without much thoughts apart from the basic outline.

I would like to pass on this baton to two of the fellow writers whom I had the privilege of meeting in this wonderful blogosphere.

Renu Sethi

Renu, a home maker by choice is a prolific blogger and writer. Her stories have been published in many e-magazines and few of her short stories and poems are published in various anthologies. She blogs at Inner workings of my (in)sane mind

Stephen A K

Stephen, an engineer by profession is a vivid blogger with his funny as well as romantic take on various matters on which he blogs upon. His short story has been published in an anthology called 'Uff Ye Emotions.' He blogs as The Solitary Writer

Do hop onto their blogs next monday as they take this baton forward and give us a sneak peak into their writing process. 

Friday, 11 April 2014

The Prompt for the NaPoWriMo today is,
Our own prompt for today should be a little simpler. (As always, the prompts are optional). Once upon a time, poetry was regularly used in advertisements, most notably the Burma-Shave ads:
Said Farmer Brown
Who’s bald on top
“Wish I could
Rotate the crop”
She put a bullet
Through his hat
But he’s had closer
Shaves than that
Today, I challenge you to write your own advertisement-poem. You don’t need to advertise Burma-Shave. Any product (or idea) will do. Perhaps you could write a poem advertising poetry? It certainly could use the publicity! On that note, let me leave you until tomorrow with this paen to the virtues of advertisement:
The codfish lays ten thousand eggs,
The homely hen lays one.
The codfish never cackles
To tell you what she’s done-
And so we scorn the codfish
While the humble hen we prize.
It only goes to show you
That it pays to advertise!
- Anonymous”
Also, tagging this post to #atozchallenge.

Also, I don't know whether I have been completely able to do justice to today's prompt. But this is what I chose to write, which is straight from the heart.

Joyce I write
Pondering Two I pour
Words that ignite
The Love and Passion for more

Lovely, Beautiful and Fantastic
Adjectives showered upon
Makes me tick
On and on

Seeing my stories in print
I feel pleased
Imprints after imprints
Work and passion squeezed

Without your constant Love
Wouldn’t have been possible
Thank you; over and above
I pledge to be humble

Hope you connect
With me and my writings
Be it on twitter or FB
@rohank01 and PonderingTwo

Picture Courtesy: zerodean.com

Listed below are my fellow NaPoWriMo Participants -
http://andiwrite.com/ – Hrishikesh

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Into the tenth day of #NaPoWriMo, I've decided to go with free verse rather than the prompt.

Also tagging the post to #atozchallenge.

Source: Google Images

Inchoate feelings
Loverly bonbon fills
Inherent darling

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

The Prompt for the NaPoWriMo today was "Today, let’s rewrite a famous poem, giving it our own spin. While any famous poem will do, if you haven’t already got one in mind, why not try your own version of Cesar Vallejo’s Black Stone Lying on a White Stone? If you’re not exactly sure how such a poem could be “re-written,” check out this recent poem by Stephen Burt, which riffs on Vallejo’s. Happy writing!” I chose this Shakespeare sonnet.

Also tagging the post to #AtoZChallene2014.

Source: Google Images

Hitherto thy liberty in a free rides the day
Betrothed and adighting to abear their presence
Altogetherness enjoys the liberty with a bouquet
A blossoming bud threatening to flagrance

The pleasing camaraderie soothing the heavenly sojourn
Igniting the clem of passion mounting like a thunderous cloud
With some chike and feel playing to the nocturne
Daysprings and dewfall dove to be wowed

Days and years seems to be a passing number
As thee mould into loadstar roles profound with love
That millions of strange shadows on thee tend to purr
And thee but one, can every shadow lend the ladylove

With panache in all the external grace thee have some part
But none, none like thee for a constant heart


Listed below are my fellow NaPoWriMo Participants -
http://andiwrite.com/ – Hrishikesh

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Into the day eight of #NaPoWriMo we have to write a love poem on an inanimate object.

So, have attempted a Tanka.

Also tagging it to #AtoZChallenge

Gingerly receive

Gregarious aroma

Kiss that welcomes dawn

Kindles the ember within

In tranquility with life

And below are my fellow #NaPoWriMo participants:

jaibalarao.com - Jaibala

http://andiwrite.com - Hrishikesh

http://viewsofpreethib.wordpress.com - Preeti

Do visit the above links to read some awesome posts. Cheers!!

Monday, 7 April 2014

Into the day seventh of NaPoWriMo; the prompt for today is:

“We got rather complicated with yesterday’s prompt, so today’s is much simpler. Take a good look outside your window. Spend a minute or so jotting down all the nouns you see outside. Tree. Car. Bus. Dog. Then spend a minute or so writing down all the colors you see. Finally, think about taking place outside. Is the wind blowing? “Blow.” Is someone walking their dog? “Walk.” Spend a minute or so writing down these verbs. Now you've got a whole list of words from which to build a poem, mixing and matching as you go. Happy writing!” Easy prompt but too many choices, I wasn't sure if I would come up with anything. So here goes my attempt.

At first a Haiku and then a Cinquain Poetry introduced to me by Jaibala Rao. Thank you for letting me know such a beautiful form of poetry.

Sapphire Butterfly

Contour that accentuates

Bewitching beauty

Source: Google Images

And now the Cinquain Poetry.


Exotic blush

Ravishing, Perky, Fiery

She is breathtakingly beautiful.



And below are my fellow #NaPoWriMo participants:

jaibalarao.com - Jaibala

http://andiwrite.com - Hrishikesh

http://viewsofpreethib.wordpress.com - Preeti

Do visit the above links to read some awesome posts. Cheers!!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Into the sixth day of NaPoWriMo and today's prompt is really interesting which made me to drop my Haiku Theme and attempt a poem based on the prompt.

This is an attempt at the “Shovel Poetry”. The idea is to take the last word from each line of another poem and use it as the last word in our own poem. 

I chose Clenched Soul by Pablo Neruda.

Also tagging the post to AtoZchallenge.

Source: Google Images

Lost into each other on this twilight

With clasped hand

Oblivious to the intruding world

Eyes fixated on each other’s window

A funnelling fiesta of Love tops

Passion shimmering like a scorching mid-day sun

With expressive eyes and unstill hand

As bodies clench

Exploring the unknown flexuous to know

An unknown then

Beauteous and aesthetic there

The amorous trance achieving fruition some what

As crescendo leaves suddenly

With you looking away

The dawn falling on this twilight

As the haunting dream hurt at my feet

With lonely evenings

And a glass of wine erasing the immortal statue 


And below are my fellow #NaPoWriMo participants:

jaibalarao.com - Jaibala

http://andiwrite.com - Hrishikesh

http://viewsofpreethib.wordpress.com - Preeti

Do visit the above links to read some awesome posts. Cheers!!