Sunday, 21 January 2018

The cycle of reading goes on

i want to write a post here but there is this song stuck into my head since last 15 minutes and every time i come here to type, i play that song once again and listen and then i come back to type but then again i listen the song, finish and then come back only to helplessly watch the cycle repeat itself. Do you know what does the song, that is stuck in your head and keeps playing in a loop, is called? It is called Ear-worm. The word is quite catchy though.

Anyway, let's talk about books! Today i finished Girl Online Going Solo by Zoella Sugg. i am seriously not into teen books and chic lits but a few weeks back i was into the book shop here and saw this Girl Online on discount. The cover looks colorful and vibrant, matching to the story of 17 years old girl. So i bought it. i find books the best articles to decorate my house with. i love seeing books lying around, my guitar resting at one corner and my laptop perched on a table or sofa. These give me a sense of belonging, remind me of my goals and keep me perked up. In short, the best sight to lay eyes on. 

So i was saying i finished GO. As expected, the book can be much more enjoyed by teenagers or  simply, young adults. Penelope Porter is the lead protagonist and the book has two predecessors in the same series to claim. Before GO, i had finished Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult. What an awesome book the latter is! i was totally absorbed once i got into it. For the first few chapters, my reading was not organized but soon after, most possibly a miracle, i picked up my old pace where i, if i am in love with a book, do anything to finish the book asap. i read Small Great Things practically in every free minute and even then when i had my face pack on. The author has such fine way of narrating a story that just got under my skin. Now after GO, i again have picked Picoult. Yet to start but i am sure i am about to disembark to a great journey.

Which book did you finish lately? Would you recommend it as my next read?


----------------------------------------------------

Buy my book - The Shadow of Darkness - on Amazon

For other Buy Book links, check out the right margin of my blog. Much thanks!

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Get off internet, get a life.

A few days back, i came across this :


These five words are way more killing than the famous three words. They can stop your heart beating in a second while the latter one may take time to do the same. If three words aren't able to - cause hyper tension, a couple of syndromes, sleepless nights, jaywalking, incessant blabbering, birds and stars roaming around head, and stop the world spinning - then these five words definitely can. i know they are pretty effective because i can chant i love you!  for 108 or may be, 1008 times but i don't think i have the courage to say - i am switching off internet - not even for once.

Internet has become like breathing. Once it's out, you get blank! You don't know what to do? Where to go? Whom to chat with? Where to meet? The whole world has only one ramp walk and that's internet. It's impressive seeing how everyone just loves the internet but life is existing beyond that. Yes. That's true. Don't believe me? Okay then. Let me tell you an experiment i have been thinking to do since sometime.

Since almost a couple of weeks, i have been thinking to shut my self down from the internet once in a week. i am still undecided but have been giving this experiment a serious thought. Wouldn't it be healthy to stay off the stress caused by internet for one whole day? Sounds much like a dream, too good to be true, right?

But i did it today. Stayed away from the internet for the whole day except for RTing on Twitter and posting a Hindi article of mine, that has got published this evening, on FB and sharing its snippets on my Instagram. Read it here:


It was relaxing for most of the part. Yes. The habit is not easy to fade away. One moment, you are all over the internet and suddenly, everything stops. You stop. The sudden break causes jerk. It's an uneasy feeling but if the break has happened after a long long tiring journey then it's welcomed. A little discomfort is far better than getting your eyes blood shot, butts aching, numb fingers and mild headache. It was welcomed today. All of it.

Tomorrow, the life will get back to its own routine, the same old tweeting about my new book (did you buy it, btw?), creating interesting post for FB and staying engaged on Insta through out the day. Also, mail exchanges and sharing links, taking care of the reviews, giving interviews, biting nails over current contest...everything will be back but i had my break. And it had relaxed me. It has wooed me enough to finally decide upon a definite day in a week when i can say Good Bye Wifi! for full 24 hours. i need it. Everyone does.

So i'll recommend you to say these five words - i am switching off internet - TODAY! 

Take a break, have a day off. Find life once again. Smile for once not from a joke popping up on the internet but coming out of some real person's lips. It's good for your health. Meet people face to face or over a book. Chat and not tweet. Create moments, share those snippets later. Unfurl good times and then pin them afterwards. Get off internet, get a life.

--------------------------------------------                                      --------------------------------------------------

Buy my latest book - The Shadow of Darkness on Amazon

For other links, check out the right margin of my blog.

Friday, 19 January 2018

My version of The Judgment Day

It's become a routine lately, writing a post before hitting the bed. My fingers just want to tap for 30 minutes or so in an attempt to create something that can help me with the good night sleep. Writing is soothing and all that theory and facts.

An hour and a half ago, i was glued to my sofa, eyes sticking out in front in horror and dismay, and my heart was pounding just to figure out whether we'd survive the deathly Leo-Beiderman comet attack on earth. Well, it was not actually an attack. The comet happened to be thrown in the earth's orbit and now it was coming with a greeting card. USA was as usual worried. Mr. President was doing his best to keep his cool while addressing the nation but i could feel he must be wanting to be reassured by someone else as well. Some times, you want to be weak and receive all the sympathy flowers and soothing words. But you are stripped off this privilege when you sign yourself as the president of USA (and that is exactly why i am never going to stand up in US elections). Things were deteriorating and hope was about to die. But at the end, everything turned out well and nice as a few brave astronauts already floating in space took the risk at destroying the bigger comet. One from the other smaller twos did hit the earth and cost casualties, but hey! Many were saved as well, if that helps. This way the dying hope survived once again. And that's what makes up for a good movie ending. With people hugging each other, tears rolling down the cheeks realizing they are the fortunate ones getting the second chance at Life, and the happiness flooding the rest of the country sizing up larger than the sea flood that the cheeky smaller comet had hailed earlier, i too heaved a sigh of relief as in i too was about to die. 

Deep Impact. That was the movie i was glued to. Movies such as Deep Impact, 2012, After Earth, Interstellar etc. sets you up on the trajectory path of possibilities and fantasies. i even think sometimes about the day and time when i'd open my big window curtains only to look at the giant sea wave swallowing the city and now rallying towards my house. The wave in my imagination looks pretty hungry. It wouldn't stop easily. Then i think what would i do in such situation. i think i'd grab my family (and passport. You can't help but think of passport first when you are in a foreign country), only if we have time and, well, here is the funny part, would run out of the house as if this move would save me from being the apple pie of the wave. Then i debate on the better option - die inside home or outside? The question looks tougher than any of those my kid's has ever asked. i think harder and then i give up! Why to fret when it's not going to happen? So i stop imagining, refill my lungs with hope and go on to open the curtains. And the hoe survives once again.

Do you like watching such movies? If you do, do you ever go crazy like me imagining what i imagine? If you do then what it is? A giant big wave or an insanely huge dinosaur attack? Aliens' invasion or the earth freezing to the death? Is it earth and sky finally meeting up at the horizon and thus, sticking to each other turning the elliptical globe into a round flat plate? Or we, the humans, have eaten up all the resources throwing ours and the rest species on the brink of extinction?

Wherever your imagination takes you, share. Would love to listen other versions of The Judgment Day. 

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Feminism: Where it needs work?

In the series hashtag Women On The Move organized every Wednesday by Women's Web on twitter, we women were indulged in discussing probabilities of below idea:

                                                               How to raise feminist sons?

Men and women, all are equally welcome to join these weekly sessions.

Bring the word Feminism anywhere and you will be frowned upon, sneered at or may be even face palmed with judgment. And that's exactly why it makes up for a brilliant topic. The concept is highly misunderstood and often taken as an offense/granted when someone says he or she is a feminist. There are multiple layers of myths and misconceptions linked to feminism that demands to be unpeeled off! As a result, we talked.

After an hour long chat, these ideas were bring forth collectively - 

  • Communicate with sons. 
  • The males of the house should start respecting women. Because charity begins at home.
  • Boys should be involved in household chores to understand the nature of women's work.
  • They should utilize media such as books and movies to understand women more.
  • They should not play gender wise. Girls and boys both should play together.
  • Stop using blue for boys and pink for girls.
  • Parents should not select toys gender wise.
  • No silly jokes/gestures, that indicate disregard to any woman, should be allowed to avoid complexities later.
  • Sons should communicate with such men who pay regards to women and understand them. Sitting with own species bring more awareness and broadens the perspective.
  • Household chores should not be divided as what's assigned for girls and what's for boys as much as  when it comes to sports. If boys can play badminton, girls too can play chess and cricket.
  • Make sons responsible

Well, i have tried to put as much of them as i can remember. i am sharing only to spread the knowledge. 

The evening moved forward and i was busy in preparing dinner. Along with rolling out chapatis and cooking veggies in the pressure cooker, i kept thinking about the topic, on 'what else can be done in an attempt to raise our sons into more civilized and open minded personalities'. Two ideas hit me eventually:

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Read! No more excuses!

Among other joys in life, reading tops the list and i am not the only one saying it. Enough research has been done on finding what makes people special happy and not surprisingly, reading seems to have the best spell. How great!

For proof, let me give you the list of Top 15 Hobbies in the world:
  1. Reading
  2. Fishing
  3. Sewing
  4. Listening to music
  5. Bird watching
  6. Wood working
  7. Collecting (coins, stamps, books, antique jewelry, furniture etc.)
  8. Watching television
  9. Golf
  10. Travelling
  11. Shopping
  12. Cooking
  13. Gardening
  14. Spending time with family and friends, and 
  15. Theater

Read. Read. And read.
For me, reading does not come as a hobby. It's one more way of living life, a big sophisticated but personal show to feel the magic of another world. Reading defines my life up to a great extent. Nurture the passion of reading. Because it is worth. Every. Single. Second. 

Therefore, in order to spread this infectious joy, i am sharing some quick fixes to people who do not like to read as well as for those who do not find enough time anymore to pick a good read.


Set reading as priority

If setting up an alarm is the routine, if taking care of laundry, work and family is the routine then why not reading? It does not ask you to move or to make a conversation or running errands. It just wants you to sit for some time and be quiet. Once you put reading in your Top 3 priorities, i am pretty sure you will get your list 100% checked every time.


Find your taste

Reading does not prompt you to pick any book and start it right away. You may stumble on a bad choice only to wake up with a refreshed oath to not to read ever again.

Instead, you need to hop on a mission. To find your taste. It is much like finding the best cake for a sweet tooth or the most titillating spice for savory lovers. Some like fiction (imaginary stories, non-real) and some prefer non-fiction (real stories). Some like thriller that causes goosebumps or some may find horror more appealing. 

There are plenty of genres or categories in books to browse from - historical, mythical, religious, motivational, cookery, spiritual, travel, self-motivation, learning and much more. The best way to find everything at one place is...no, not Amazon...but a library. Library is the perfect place to start. Take the membership and start on the mission TODAY.

Monday, 15 January 2018

8 pointers on How to survive on your own.

How do you define a good time?

When everything is running smoothly, when everything is exactly what you wanted to be, right?

Now let's define a bad time.

When nothing goes in favor, and you feel your legs are tied at one end of the anchor whose other end is tied to the bottom of the ocean. The feeling of drowning to be precise.

If you abhor bad times, well then good times are the ones to blame. Because they have given you the taste of happiness, of how time flies away quickly and how easier it was to breathe every second. With bad times, it is like we are standing on the other side of the mirror where everything is the exact opposite.

So who is the better teacher between the two?

Bad times. Right?! Because they teach you the hardest lessons, because they peel the mask off faces, because they allow you to see the reality. And since we are all dreamers, reality is a salty pie which no one is willing to eat.

Learning process is hard but with few hacks, it can get easier to understand the sinking phase. We can evolve, only if we allow ourselves a chance to deal with the ghost presence called dark times.

Throw a quick glance at 8 hacks

Distraction

We may all have one primary job but like soups and salads, we have our side kicks too. Find distraction as soon as you feel downward. This will prevent negative sentiments to pile up. Find something that can take your mind off. For example, watch a good movie that can absorb you totally. Read a good book which has a compelling story to tell. Paint or draw, may be. Doodling is a hack proved by the researchers that works as a healer. Go out. Fresh air fills your brain with more oxygen and that's what required to feel uplifted.


Do not push

Saturday, 13 January 2018

5 things that show you have a winner's spirit

Clear eye on the goal

It takes time to identify but once the mist is cleared, your eyes are never off the goal. You not only pay attention towards it but also do the extensive research on What it takes to get it! 

Focus, self-motivation, perseverance, regular practice, discipline, guidance...you imbibe everything that needs to ease the hurdles and fulfill the dream. 


A circle of chosen few 

It is a very common saying that a man is known by the company he keeps. Think deeper and you'll know why it is such a famous idiom. If your friends have positive attitude, accept your flaws and merits with equal enthusiasm, keep up with the motivation, provide space, believe in development and doing new things, ready to take a plunge for you if asked...these things in surroundings shape you. 

They make you better everyday.




Absorb the failures

An experience is a failure until you call it so. Till then, it's merely an experience, a lesson. One with  an undying spirit will never allow himself to succumb to the failures, disappointments, losses, rejections, lack of resources etc for longer period. These things may keep him down for some time but soon after, he will dust off the negative sentiments, pick up the drive and get ready to bat once again. 

Falling will never be the ending. It'll only be a part of the process. Getting up will always be the end as well as a new beginning.

Friday, 12 January 2018

8 powerful signs to identify Childhood Trauma

Childhood Trauma(CT) - a painful incident taken place in childhood. Its affects can be so devastating that not even the bearer realizes its power. He blames himself for not being able to do better but the reason might be very opposite. It may not be his lack of doing things better but the trauma that he had to endure in the childhood that's keeping him from evolving.

As parents and guardians to our children, it is utmost important for us to learn signs of Childhood Trauma. The painful episode can affect the child in so many ways that many a times, we fail to even see them! Then how can we identify them?

Here are 8 powerful signs that can help you to understand whether a child is suffering from a traumatic episode:


Lack of confidence
The person suffering from CT may lack confidence. Where other people can do tasks without any hassle, the trauma bearer may find it difficult to execute. The lack of confidence triggers to low self-motivation which makes the task look bigger than its real size. The desirable result stays at far.

Staying isolated/away from everyone

If you see a child or a grown up keeping to himself frequently, this can be a sign. Coming out means dealing with the world whereas the trauma bearer may consider the outer world unfriendly. So he prefers to stay indoors or a place where he can stay alone, where he does not have to deal with anyone. Silence, as we can understand, works more as an ointment or healing.

Refusing to play
The traumatic child finds it challenging to mingle. Socializing becomes out of question. If a child refuses to play with others, it means he does not want to share his toys and space with anyone else. Other's presence may look like an intrusion into his little world.
The fear of socializing is known as Agoraphobia. It triggers anxiety, discomfort and unusual behavior.

Fear of indoors and/or outdoors

Have you seen a child fearful of staying at one particular place? The boy does not want to stay home or the girl is constantly itching to come back to home? Does the boy makes excuses to stay at his friend's place? Does the girl give numerous reasons to stay inside?

It's because of the fear of the place. It is called Topophobia - the fear of a particular place. The affected person would like stay away from a place that can easily trigger anxiety and make him uncomfortable.

Thursday, 11 January 2018

As a parent, you need to be braver.

Yesterevening when my kid wanted to play cricket but did not know where, i stepped in, apparently with more courage and invisible armory. There is a pretty place on my floor right outside my doorstep and the sport understandably can not be played inside the house. So i asked him what if we played out on the floor space but he denied vehemently. After all, no one would like to be reprimanded by a neighbor for disturbing his evening time. i insisted and we played. For 15 good minutes i guess. One neighbor sure came out but when he saw a kid playing, he said to continue. It was encouraging.

There was, of course, no intention to disturb anyone but if we, the parents, keep following rules and guidelines all the time, how then can we expect our children to be able to break the ceiling glass one day? If parents keep saying Yes and No as the world says, how our children would change the equation? In order to teach them the formidable lessons of  passion and dedication, as parents, we have to bend some rules first. i stepped out with courage thinking - if any neighbor said not to play, we won't continue but let's hear it first! - and it worked. My kid was glowing with happiness. 

It's the other matter that my right hand had soon started to ache due to tackling leather ball fiercely.


Sharing helps!

The post title is also a quote from my book - The Shadow of Darkness. 

How it came to be? Because the story comforts an ebullient friendship between Sejal and Diya. They are childhood friends. Where for Sejal, this friendship is a perfect escapade from her daily issues (like nightmares and nagging people), for Diya, the bond is moreover about being receptive (welcoming the shifts of emotions). Their friendship is the kind that drags one to the other. 

Like Sejal, you too must have someone with whom you share not only happiness but also the problems. Because let's fact it! Sharing good times is easier than troublesome experiences. So in the same endeavor, i'd like to ask you:



You can pick'n drop your comments below. Keep sharing. 

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Warm wishes from family and friends.

So we asked some of our family and friends to record their best wishes for my latest book - The Shadow of Darkness - instead of conveying them personally. We thought it'd be a good way to freeze their words for inspiration whenever i feel loss at it. So, the same has been shared and i am very delighted sharing the collection. It makes me feel i can go on because i have these wonderful people by my side to look after. 


Monday, 8 January 2018

Sarojini - an inspiring woman



The above quote belongs to my latest book - The Shadow of Darkness. The character in reference to whom this line has been written is Sarojini, an old woman and a widow, living with her son and his family. 

When Sarojini lost her husband - Sujoy, it was, of course, not easy on her. She was devastated for months! As a loving caring wife, she always did her best to be the strongest support pillar for her husband so that their marriage can be called a beautiful home to be in. Unfortunately, one night her dreams and desires are put to an end when the person she loved the most dies. Sujoy leaves her to grieve and loneliness. 

Losing on the husband is a big tragedy for a woman. Not only he is the towering figure for the family for protection but also a practical mind to solve many issues. Tough head but soft at heart. Sure men and women are different but when the husband has this caring nature, knack for his business to expand its wings, always stays protective of his family, the wife sure feels the stab when such beautiful figure is lost. A woman can live alone these days, i agree but a true companionship does not hurt. And that's what Sujoy was for Sarojini, a true companion and a loving husband,

But life does not stop here. As long as you are breathing, you have no option but to live it. It's highly difficult to move on, to breathe through days and sleep through nights. Both become inhumanely impossible and painful. You don't know what to do, how to lead the further steps, where to find the necessary strength and meaning in living, when to stop grieving...

Time makes everyone tough. It challenges you to not to break you but to train you into a bigger fighter. Sarojini too learns a few important lessons on how to live the rest of life. In her vow to find the lost self, she says to herself - 

'If life is meant to be lived with finding a harmony then so be it. I would do it.'

Read more about Sarojini and her inspiring struggle to find peace in The Shadow of Darkness.

Saturday, 6 January 2018

The soothing hug.

It's weekend here. Friday and Saturday. Be it either weekdays or weekends, there is always a rush chasing. For weekdays, it's routine whereas on weekends, it's the desperation to relax. Both the ways, days always go by in a blink.

These days i feel i am growin even more intolerant to the constant running. All i crave is to sit down and have a lengthy luxurious piece of quietness. Now i understand better when i see movie stars having wine in their bath tubs, listening to music and relaxing in the aromatic pool of water. Quietness can be so lucrative that it makes the human go at any length to have it.

It's so tough to afford it, you know. The quiet Me time where you can just sit and do nothing. A cup of tea is appealing so warm sips provide more comfort. Here in Kuwait, there are plentiful of sea beaches. And the way its citizens maintain them, hats off! They really like to keep their city and beaches superbly clean. Whenever i get a chance, i want to walk on the edge of the sea. The crashing of small waves at several points, the restlessness of water, the precision of clarity in it (when you look down, you can actually count stones, pebbles and rocks under it. the water is so impressively clean!), the mild winter, the warmth i get in the hugging jacket while seeing at the horizon where the sky and earth seem to have an eternal meeting...these just take me off my feet and i breathe the freshness, the crispness of the moment. Each one of us has different perspective to absorb the surroundings. i too am no exception.

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Review for The Shadow of Darkness



Buy your copy on Amazon 

It is love that outlaws every existing logic.



It happens when you least expect it
the shift comes slowly and steadily
and before you know it,
you have already fallen for it!

It is the light, it's the darkness
it is the suffering, it is the healing,
it's a no wonder yet is the biggest magic,
it is love that outlaws every existing logic.


Buy the book on Amazon

Sunday, 31 December 2017

Early December 31st post

2017 is about to say bye bye giving way to the new year. Like every predecessor, this year too had been the roller coaster in many sense. But it's still not over. One more day is left. The last day. The final call. The Judgement Day. Sounds scary. Only it isn't. After the last drop comes another empty bucket of 365 1/4 days to fill with memories mixed with emotions, faces and what not. Let's not indulge into finding examples here.

Let's talk what i did this evening. We had nice dinner outside at a good restaurant. The weather here is chilly so a reasonably good jacket is required. You'd also like to cover your head to save those precious silky locks from receiving harsh repercussions afterwards. i also travel with gloves. My hands get too cold too soon. What else? You can also carry a good scarf, thick socks, good quality lip balm to avoid chapped lips, rich moisturizer, shoes/boots...i guess this much is enough. 

Post dinner, we walked to the sea beach which was barely 100 meter walk behind the restaurant. It was lovely to walk at night, under the clouded sky where the sun was visible but hardly any star. The mild chattering of people, lights keeping the city awake, crashing of sea waves, footprints and should i rather add messages on sand(such as today we found - i love Dimple - carved on the sand over which my son took the liberty and turned the letter D into P. Now you can imagine the funny transformation). But the best thing i like about such place is the silence that the night has to offer. You  might get tired of walking alongside the banks of the sea but you can never be bored out of the peacefulness of it all. You are there but not there. You are with people but you are still alone. You are alone yet you are accompanied by many. 

You travel in many time zones at once.

Sea beach is one of those places where i would love to take my laptop and write my stories. Imagination runs so smoothly, without the hindrance of Writer's block or anything. Things just flow to you as waves to the bank. Sea is, i guess, the only compensation for leaving India. Bangalore is deprived of such nature's beauty. Rest things you can always find everywhere. 

On sea beach, trying to embrace new year

This is the picture my husband took today. We were talking about how 2017 has been for us so far when i asked him to click me with my arms open. i did it in order to feel the welcome of new year. What better way to do it than striking the signature pose of Shahrukh Khan or Rose and Jack? Open arms are the symbol of letting go of fear, uncertainties, lost chances, forgotten faces, sufferings, trauma, would-have-been happinesses and golden opportunities, worst nightmare, losses... They are also a symbol of accepting the new year with fresh enthusiasm and positivism. 

i am collecting snaps of this year to make a video. i'll certainly share it on my pages. It'd be good to see some of those precious memories who made the year worth, who compensated for the losses and filled the cracks when i failed. i hope the video turns out good and inspiring. Making a video is a humongous task and when i come down to make one, it's not an easy task! My expectations with me is too high. So i don't go only extra mile but a couple of extra miles. That's why my projects take longer time, much more energy and more brain cells than i believe i have. But the result has always been awesome! People like my videos. And i like them for liking my efforts so much.

So this new year, do whatever you want. Just make sure you preserve happy memories before 2018 knock you out with happiness and new opportunities.

Thursday, 28 December 2017

You are stronger than yesterday.

In a way, Sejal was the common link between two worlds that stood poles apart in every sense. 
(Page 25)

The above quote is from my recent book - The Shadow of Darkness (It ends where it was started)

What came into your mind when you read it? Why do you think i posted it here? For my book promotion? No. i posted it here because it's the reality told bravely through a fiction story where Sejal leads and loses, wins and performs. People affected by a traumatic episode in their childhood years not only struggle to live a life but they constantly thrive to bring meaning to it. They look for a stronger purpose than the mere survival everyday. In my words, they are fighters with brave souls.

Some might say Sejal is my lead character and that is why i talk her as a fighter. Nope, once again. She is a fighter and that's why she is my protagonist. She is beautiful and intelligent, sensitive and brave, caring and friendly. She has the colors of a good human being with downsides of being the very same. She loses confidence, nightmares haunt her; she likes to lick her wounds before anyone can see them, she looks for support instead of being brave all the time (which is fairly impossible!), she needs love in order to find herself...The Shadow of Darkness is her story told in an untold manner.

Childhood trauma has a long lasting affect. There are fair chances of it outgrowing the person. He continues to live in the particular piece of past from where there is no escape. The episode keeps playing in a loop until he is exhausted, wishing he could do something to erase that memory or direct in a different direction. The exhaustion comes largely because of the inability to do something, anything about it but when the last kick of failure puts the final bolt, it is done...until the cycle repeats itself all over again.

When life seems challenging enough to lead, i tell myself to take it one day at a time. One day until it's all over. Traumas take their time to binge on the person. It makes the person fragile, introduces a new low every day. What you think is impossible to handle today, well then, hello! Tomorrow you may have a bigger challenge to face and worse, deal with. 

And then you know you were stronger the previous day. Because you survived alright to face the next sun rise, the bigger challenge. And somewhere, this weird realization, gives you strength. If i survived yesterday, i might as well be able to do it again. All i need is a sun set. 


The final teaser of The Shadow of Darkness talks about the same - the sun sets, high tides, trauma, the questions we ask everyday to ourselves, and the kind of love we need to overcome them.

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Love 'not' at the first sight.

"You don't know me, Sejal. But I hope you do                                                                                                             Very soon!" Kartik to Sejal.


The book cover and two characters placed side by side do not make much of a mystery, do they? You can easily figure out that Kartik and Sejal are the lead protagonists of my next book: The Shadow of Darkness. 

K and S are very special to me, not because they are my creations but because they have developed themselves along with the story. If i wanted K to do this, he refused and did the opposite. If i asked S to go there, no! She would go nowhere near 'there'. At the end, i gave up and let them carry on to grow, to become what they wanted to be. And i guess they have done a nice job. A recent review says the same.

But unlike every other love story, K and S tick off each other at every chance they get. Neither of them is willing to settle down. There is always a dagger drawn out, ready for the battle. There is always this desperation to chase each other in the conversations to prove who's superior. You see. K and S are not into each other since the beginning. It takes quite a time. 

But how did they meet for the first time? And where? Why the dagger is always out? Why none of them can settle and be comfortable in the other's presence? Where does their chemistry leads the story? And what happens later on that made them bring together? Did they also draw a happy ending besides their personalities or....?

Well, if you need answers, you have to read the book. 

Monday, 18 December 2017

The limitless boundaries of a writer.

Writing is cathartic.

Writing is beautiful.

Writing is ethereal.

Writing touches you deeply, wraps you in a sheath of comfort.

Writing lets you be when you wish to scream but are unable to do so.

Aren't above the things people usually say about writing? That it is magical? that the pen is mightier than the sword? That the writers turn thoughts into action?

True it is, whatever you pick. Writing is about making the words prance around sloppily with happiness. It is allowing the words to ache instead of you. It can magnify the slightest of pains and dwarf the biggest of achievements. Writing is like building the monument of events, firing the plot with crackers of interesting set of characters who amaze you with the sight ever so blinding, with the feelings ever so heavenly. Writing indeed is magical!

Writing is not only beautiful but it also makes the pen holder feel beautiful too. Words let you express. Words allow you to expand when you feel shrinking into a dot. Characters speak on your behalf while your emotions remain anonymous to the world. When you write, it works as an outlet and whether it is not fully guaranteed that you'll feel better at the end, but it is sure a signed off treaty of peace that you become better at handling things by the time you put that last dot at the end tunnel of that last sentence. You no longer remain the person you were before the drop of the first word. You have grown, like into a toddler from the infant, into a tree from a seed, into a fertile land after the heavy rainfall. You grow into the desired result from a mere casualty of the battle.

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

अविरत चलता ब्रम्हांड

हवा में  बिखरे पत्तों से दिन 
आसमां के तारों सी फैली रातें 
आँखें इनके बीच कुछ ढूंढती सी 
तय कर रही कितनी राहें ;

एक पल और सब कुछ है 
उम्मीद, चाहत, ज़िन्दगी के रंग 
अगले पल जैसे कुछ भी नहीं 
है तो बस जलता शून्य अनंत;

कहाँ जाऊं किसे बताऊँ 
कैसे कहूँ किसे समझाऊं 
प्राणों की आहुति भी दे दूँ 
तो भी शायद कह ना पाऊं;

खुली आँखों से सपने देखते
जाने कब बंद आँखों की नींद चली गयी
जो सपने कभी मरहम थे
आज काँटों से चुभते हैं दिल पर;

कहाँ ढूँढूँ खोये उन टुकड़ों को
जो कभी मेरा एक हिस्सा थे
कुछ यादों में ग़ुम हो गए
कुछ ऱक्त के साथ बह गए ;

Friday, 8 December 2017

So my latest book is Out!

i was downstairs at one of my neighborhood friends' house discussing things when i received the mail stating that my latest book - The Shadow of Darkness - is out! Just a few weeks ago, an earthquake had shaken my building quite lovingly. After reading the mail, another earthquake shook me within. i stopped talking and checked the links, and yes! It is true. My new book is now available for you to buy, read and share. Funny how and where life gives surprises.

 Find The shadow of Darkness on:

Amazon

Flipkart

Pothi

The story is promising. No? You don't trust me? Okay. Watch the fresh trailer for crying out loud.


At the end, if you like, buy and read. Share your feedback with me. Also, share with your friends and family as much as you can.

With love - Priyanka

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Final teaser of 'The Shadow of Darkness'

So here is the second and final teaser of my upcoming book - The Shadow of Darkness. Hope you enjoy watching it. A lot of effort has been gone into making it. 

Yeah, like it's a wonder. It happens with everyone. Get over yourself, Priyanka!




Watch the first one here:



Buy Book links will be shared soon. Don't forget to buy and then share them with your friends and family. It's the best way you can give me your wishes and blessings. And yes, through your comments too.

____________________________

P.S. Read my pre-release interview done for my new book - The Shadow of Darkness: 

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Pre-release interview for 'The Shadow of Darkness'

First and the foremost, read the pre-release interview done for my upcoming book here on IndiaCafe24:

Priyanka Baranwal is back with a new book on IndiaCafe24

The interview has new things for you to learn about my book. and i sincerely hope you enjoy reading it. Don't forget to leave a comment there (or here). The owner of IndiaCafe24 is my friend. She'll love your comments there.

Sharing the link, i can totally recall the first day, the first word of TSD (let's call my book in a short name. Writing its full name every time is finger-cracking). The title was decided and the story line was decided earlier than the title. It was somewhere along the journey of writing my first book - It's Never Too Late (again a finger-cracking effort writing it. Let's call it INTL as i usually prefer). If you have read INTL, you know Maya already and if you haven't then go, buy and read. The build up is nice, as someone had complimented me once.



INTL dealt with a grown up woman and the repercussions of a horrible night. TSD deals with a teenage girl who continues to live in spirals of the night. She is not five year old anymore which she was during the night. She is now grown up and how past plays with the head and how it can take a leap back into present, it's worth reading. i can honestly tell you that i have had my detailed research on Childhood trauma and also a fair perspective on what happens when the part of trauma comes back to haunt. It's totally exhausting writing about it all then how people face it in real life? Even i was affected writing TSD. But the book also made me believe that traumatized people are very strong and an inspiration. They lead a life not for anyone else but for themselves. They are still willing to build up a good meaningful life despite of a horrible incident of the past. Not many of us know what it takes to do it but we can surely read about it to get the idea. So gooo...buy the book once i share the links here and read.

i am sure you'll love the story as much as i do. More for later.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Scars are a lot like love.

i have been meaning to write a blog post since days but couldn't do it. i know my book is coming out and that i am supposed to be frantically writing posts here more than ever to get people hooked up about what to expect in my new creation. But you know...responsibilities scare you away some times. Or that's what has been happening with me; wanted to pay but sub-consciously avoiding it. But what the heck! Life is long anyway.

So i have been receiving messages and mails regarding the cover of my new book. People are liking it. i am glad! So much effort, time and black-hair-turned-grey are invested in it. It has to be appealing. Credit goes to my publishing team who made it possible or else i am terrible when it comes to draw/sketch. It's because of my team that my story has gotten such a suitable intriguing face. Can't say thank you enough.

The book is on Childhood Trauma, a taboo for you and me and the rest of the society. Trauma, of any type, is a scar, screech marked on mind and soul, hard to heal, never to be gone. It happens slowly (i am somehow developing the urge again to leave this post incomplete and go away but i am just trying to go on). It takes days, months and years to realize that you are actually been scarred for the rest of life but by that time, it is too late. Healing has to happen on time.

Somehow it makes me think scars are a lot like love. You stay oblivious when they are happening. The innocence rips apart with the time. Both are the matchless sources of passion, power and desire. Both are the armories to invoke strength and courage to do things that may look impossible at this moment. Both possess the ability to construct and destruct anything around.

Whatever comes your way, accept it. Acceptance is one of the keys to deal with both. More you run away, more you are in trouble, delaying the inevitable. Sooner you accept, sooner your destruction is promised. And if both have to end in destruction, why not do it sooner than later? Might become easier through days and nights, leaving the only big question to deal with - 

How to do it?

(Finally i did it. Wrote a post here. Yay!)


Sunday, 26 November 2017

Cover Reveal - The Shadow of Darkness

So i did the Cover Reveal all across my pages yesterday. The Shadow of Darkness is my upcoming novel and i am very excited about it.



Isn't it an intriguing book cover? i can talk about it endlessly but later. For now, enjoy the sight.

You can connect with me on:


Thursday, 23 November 2017

From the author’s diary - Childhood Trauma: A taboo no more

Now that you have already seen the first teaser of my upcoming book, you already know it is based on Childhood Trauma (click to read an interesting article). But what exactly is Childhood Trauma (let’s call it CT)? Why it is so important to talk about it? And how does it affect the child? or an adult?
Natural but wise queries. So let the author herself clear some of your doubts off the table.
What is Childhood Trauma?
Simply say, CT is basically a painful but overwhelming incident happened in the childhood. Such as accidents, natural disasters, loss of a loved one, abuse, physical or sexual assault etc.
They say memories fade but some unfortunate incidents can be so powerful that they choose to stay with the child and does not go away for years! As happy childhood memories linger around, traumatic ones do too.
Why it is so important to talk about Childhood Trauma?
Before i answer this, we first need to know the factors causing it to grow.
Factors causing Childhood Trauma to grow:

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

On World Children's Day Nov. 20th 2017

So today is World Children's Day. The day is dedicated to kids. On this day, the whole world is trying to make itself a better place. be it better education, better nutrition, growth, hygiene, life style, books, freedom from labor and other child relevant issues...whole world has taken the day to show how much we need to prove ourselves to our children. The day is also about giving freedom to children's dreams. Isn't it wonderful? 

So being a mother myself, i asked my kid what kind of message he'd like to send out. After all, the day is for the kids, by the kids. i framed his message it as below:



A lovely message. i shared it all across my pages: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

i am not only a mother but also a child to my parents and late grandmother. So i too have a few things to say. i’d like to dedicate this day to three of the strongest and most inspirational people of my life – My father & mother and my late Grandmother.

i’ll tell you why.

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Be thankful for this life.

Moving to a new country has its charms. Some good, some challenging, depends upon how do you take it. For an adult, adjustments are easier. But for a kid, pheww! It can be truly hard.

Since the time we are in Kuwait, each one of us is trying to adjust to a new life. For me and husband, it came down easier but for our kid, expectations were already set based by India's daily life. There he had friends, a big compound to play on, cricket coaching, several games, night walks...the kid had so many things to do that even we had to ask him to spend time with us, his parents and he'd be like, eh! Okay i'll try! That was the attitude of our little champ.

And now? The situation is flipped. Kid has to stay at home tossing with fewer options to consider. Turns out, cricket is not a big thing here. Football, swimming, T.T., yes but no cricket. So one day, he was complaining profusely. You can call it a whining but let give the kid a little more respect since they can't calculate their responses/reactions to situations.

i was working on my laptop. When he did not stop complaining about getting bored to death, i stopped working and looked up from my screen at him. If i had only worn an spectacle, the scene would look more intellectual in your head but whatever.

'Why have you been complaining? i had told you about all these things before shifting. i did tell you that being in a new country, we gotta make a few sacrifices; that you will have to adjust to a new life style. You may not find as many friends in Kuwait as you have in India. There will be things to adjust, to put up with. Then why have you been singing an opera about getting bored day and night?'

'Because i can't find anything to play here! And also i have no friends!'

Point! Not that we weren't aware of but i can't refute each time he says this.

'It's been only a few weeks since we have moved in here. Please don't expect to get friends so soon, dear son. And yes, i know cricket is a remote thing to do here but will try finding something for you. Please give us some time. You have to have some patience, dear.'

The whining did not stop regardless. So i continued too.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

You might not be at fault.

Have you seen the movie Twilight the first part? There is a scene in it where Bella and Edward are in his car. When Edward tells her about his ability to do mind reading but he can't read hers, Bella becomes self-conscious. She hesitates and utters, "Is something wrong with me?" To which Edward chuckles and replies, "No, Bella! i can't read your mind and you think there is something wrong with you. It's more like...i catch FM and you night be AM . That's all." (Dialogues are not verbatim here)

i don't know why but the scene kinda stayed with me. The way Bella perceives herself, it reflects a human tendency. How many times have you blamed yourself when things did not turn out in your favor? How many times did you think the world is all fine and there is something wrong with you?

Sounds familiar?

Breaking the myth, that's not the case every time. Our responsibility is to be sensitive and give out the best but the results cannot be tamed. We are liable only to our actions and if you think you have maintained the calm stature, rest assured regardless of the nature of the result that you might not be at fault. In any thread, there are always involved at least two people. If you doing the best and the result turns into a haywire then hey! There is nothing wrong with you. Some times, it may be the situation, the other person, wrong expectations, bad timing, misunderstanding etc. the deciding factor too. Not all the time you are going to shake world with your actions. The world might as well has the same capability to do just the same.

So next time when things don't turn out, sit, have a cup of coffee and think! Is there another factor responsible for the unexpected result or it's just bad coffee foiling your mood? Either way, save yourself some stress. Chill! There might be more options to think about. One door closes, look for another one. It's not the end of the world. There are always more options, more ways to do what you think is to be done. 

Learn. Reach out. Think positive. Keep up the good work. Focus. Believe. Achieve.

Once you grow faith, you are seasoned to move mountains.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

How My Son Taught Me to Be A ‘Man’ He Had Become - Guest Post by Ramendra Kumar

Today we have Mr. Ramendra Kumar, a widely read author as well as a much sought after inspirational speaker. In this article, he has talked about one of the incidents of his life. It's a motivational read that shows how kids can teach us the best lessons of life. It's a bit long but well worth your time, i promise. Know more about him at the end of this post. i, once again, thank you Ramendra sir for taking out time to write for my blog.

Ramendra Kumar
 How My Son Taught Me to Be A ‘Man’ He Had Become 

Ever since I can remember, anger has been my constant companion. I am supposed to be quite a fun loving person with a great sense of humour. I write wacky satires, conduct story telling sessions with kids in which the USP is  masti and at parties I am the joker in the pack. However, when I lose my temper Dr. Jekyll morphs into Mr. Hyde and the transformation is apparently scary.

“It is like he becomes a completely different person – his eyes  start bulging, his hands begin  shaking and he screams, raves and rants. When the anger quotient climbs up he even starts smashing things. 
The eloquence is there but the sentences take on a stream of consciousness mode and after sometime he doesn’t make sense,” my wife Madhavi once told  her cousin Sharmila, who was  a practising behavioural therapist.

“Ramen you are a writer and a communications professional. I don’t have to tell you how damaging anger can be. I think you should seriously start practising meditation in the mornings and evenings,” Sharmila said.

“I followed her advice. I liked indulging in meditation and Madhavi started hoping the demon of anger had finally been annihilated. It took one incident of road rage, a few weeks later,  for the reincarnation of Ravan. A bus driver kept honking relentlessly and I leaned out of the window and questioned his parentage. At the next signal he jumped down and confronted me. Even as Madhavi tried her best to calm me down the driver and I indulged in fisticuffs and  landed in the police station.
This incident sobered me down for a few days till the next ‘agent provocateur’ happened and Mr. Hyde once again took over from Dr. Jekyll.

I neither drank  nor smoked, the only addiction I was suffering from was anger. And this addiction was frustrating me quite a bit. Apart from the fact that I was hurting people and causing fissures in my relationships, the withdrawal symptoms were painful.

My son, Aniket, probably as a reaction to my antics or because he has taken after Madhavi  who is far more calm and grounded, has grown  up to be a more composed individual.  I would sometimes even chide him for ‘tolerating’ insults and ‘not giving it back’ and he would simply answer, ‘What difference does it make papa. Why fight over little things?’

“I would even rile him that he was not assertive enough and hence would lose out in the long run.” He would simply shrug and smile.

An incident in Aniket’s life changed me from an anger monger to Papa peacenik.