Category Archives: Writing

28.3

I’m 28.3 years old,Yes, the age that many of them consider as pretty old,Probably the age when you’re expected to have a board around your neck that reads ‘Sold’
I know of people, who worry a lot, When the scale of their age slides slightly to the right, but Guess what?I’m actually really happy.You know why? Let me explain it to you!
Because, I’ve crossed the baby days when ‘milk mustache’ mattered,I’m done with the toddler stage, when I thought that the shells I find in the shore are from the mermaids.I’m not in preschool, when all that mattered was the decals stickers on my bedroom walls,And, also I’m not in high school, when bullying was the most terrible thing,
I’m not a teen anymore;Those were the days I thought,People have the heart made of gold,And, I can trust someone who’d smile like a sun,You know those teenage-teeny thing are all outdone.
I’ve traversed the young adult stage when I thought roses burst in rainbow colors,When I thought love was all about Romeo and Juliet,And, life is like a lantern that floats in the sky, And, my soulmate was that guy with bright green eyes.

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I’m not 20 year old to mellow down and ask ‘Ah.. May I’I’d now shout like thunder and ask ‘Excuse me’ I need extra ketchup please.
I’m not 21 to cry when my plants have yellow spots,But, hey, sorrows and concerns are always tightening the knots.
I’m not 22 to make a wish with dandelion, Or to pray with one of my eyelashes on my knuckles, I’m so damn done with the customer care calls that I just slap them with a ‘I’m not interested’
 I’m not 23 anymore to stay in love with the wrong kinda guy,I’m not 24 to constantly have doubts about my own abilities,I’m 28.3 – who knows that success will never wait for you with arms spread wide,
When I was 25, I risked my life for that one person, whom I cared a lot about, But now, I go out with someone I’m interested, share the food bill, and then take a selfie with a pout,
When I was 26, Guilt and regret swirled inside my belly,When I was 27, I slowly learned to shut the echoes of the Memories that are best forgotten,
Now that I’m 28.3,
I easily shut everything down, ignore life and take a long nap,I’m a literature fanatic but let’s just say I’m still a Harry Potter fan, does that sound dramatic?I now delete the pathetic evidences that I’ve left on Facebook, And, I know I can survive another heart break, just like the previous one.I know that life, is just a pair of tectonic plates, that shifts at times,
I’m bold, and reckless,But, you might call me a bitch and characterless.
I’m finally who I’m supposed to be,I know that life is a play of emotions – joy, happiness, hatred, love and longing,Life’s too short to just exist, I chose to live where I felt a sense of belonging.
 – Kavipriya Moorthy

 

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Out of your Wedlock

It was when I lost my innocence, That everything else made perfect sense.
That I was a result of a random affair, And, I’m being cursed now, how is that even fair?
Something that sparked between the old flames, But, why should I carry the burden and be blamed.
How would I even explain you the pain, To be the walking embodiment of what’s called as shame.
To what do I owe this honor? I’ve got to live with a misnomer.
I try to endure this with great fortitude, But the neighborhood says, “like your mother, you’d become a prostitute,”
I feel like I’m drowning in a bottomless pond, I don’t even know what’s father-daughter bond? Oh, when I call him, he never responds. Can someone change my life with a magical wand?
My tears don’t wash away my sorrows, But, it hurts to know that my initials are to be borrowed.
And people forget to see what’s beneath my skin, Their comments that brings tears to the brim,
None understood my grief, Can I live a different life for at least a short brief?
I just want to go nowhere, Away from this world that spells not of affair. Dear God, let me please disappear, The opinions and judgements – oh, I don’t want to adhere.
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— Kavipriya Moorthy

Free amazon gift card worth 500 INR

500
My friends’ list on Facebook is a real crazy mix, listing out a few:
  • Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious authors/writers
  • Voracious readers
  • Friends who love what I write and personally comment
  • A few who genuinely appreciate
  • A group of Grammar Nazis ( A few who care to correct, and many who would love to grammar shame the other/ who think it gives them a crown)
  • A few readers who don’t read but love to buy/borrow/take books and post pictures of the book online calling it bookstagram
  • A few who claim that reading is like breathing, they can’t live without books, etc..
One category that pisses me off — the wannabe writers/authors!
According to me, a writer should first give REASONS to buy their book, not JUST gift cards or money.
I read because I seek information, it takes me off from the real-life troubles; I like to improve my skills and vocabulary, it improves my imagination/creativity, etc..
I don’t buy a book because it is free of cost, or because I know the author (sometimes, yes, if I am aware that he/she is a good writer)
I don’t want to read or rather, I don’t want anyone to read a bad book or a poorly written book. I don’t want a book that would drag my knowledge down. A few wannabe writers only want fame, they write some bad college-hookup story, a boy meet girl – girl meet boy story with poor words and bad grammar.  
I focus on being a trusted writer. I write micro-tales, short stories, thoughts, blog posts, etc.. eventually, even if people don’t read my book per se, they at least get to know and trust me as an author.
Let me give a sample messenger ping from an author I know — “Grab a copy of my book that’s on Amazon, the book is only 225 INR, and you know what? Am giving you a gift voucher worth 200 INR, you’re spending only 25 INR. Buy Now!” — I find this crazy, how can I buy a book just because it is just 25 INR? I’d be spending at least 3-4 hours reading it, is my time worth just 25 INR? No!
How about writing a good book, interacting with the writers/authors/readers with the genre, plot line, a few quotes from the book and asking them to politely choose the book if they are interested? Why don’t you hook me as a reader with what the book has in store for me?
I find it funny when the authors post their Amazon link and say “Grab a copy,” “Irresistible offer,” “Just buy now!” etc.. It sounds like a person who wants to get married yelling “Am good at sex, marry me!” , “Am an excellent lover, fix the marriage date,” — Insane, I tell you!
No offense my wannabe authors – but, please, focus on becoming a good writer than a famous author. Focus on genuine reviews and interacting with readers than paying 500 INR for each fake review, the minute you say 400+ 5 star reviews on Goodreads – we know it all! Be an author who has a story to tell and not someone who has 20,000 INR to get fake reviews. Be genuine, you’re not fooling the readers, you’re fooling yourself. Give gift vouchers, market your book as much as you can, bring the word out, etc.. but be genuine. Give your readers a reason to read, then provide them with a gift card, will you?
Writers/Authors — Work on your skills, improve your grammar, read more books, learn new words and how to use them, interact with readers, write a good story — the book will sell well. It will take time, years together. But, as I always say, the view from the summit is damn worth it!
P.S – Sorry that I used this title and image. I would like this post to be read by many wannabe writers, authors, readers, book reviewers, etc.. to change their notion a bit.

SYNOPSIS – HOW TO WRITE ONE?

I’d better write three novels than a synopsis, because, it is THAT difficult. For my next flick Dirty Martini – My editors and I re-wrote the synopsis for almost 50 times 🙁 though we are convinced now, we also know how challenging and painstaking it is. Agents ask for synopsis along with your query letter most of the times.
I thought this post would be of some use to the newbies and also, for the authors to use this as a checklist.
Quintessential a synopsis:
  1. 1-2 pages in length
  2. Single spaced
  3. All the essential details of your novel should be summarized
  4. It must be interesting enough to be picked
Yes, Challenging indeed.
Elements:
  • Protagonist, the conflict, and setting
As I usually say, all the stories are about pushing the protagonist in a situation and helping him/her to come out of it. Make sure it is fresh, new and exciting. Ensure that your elements in your story don’t reflect or imitate any other.
  • Major plot turns/twists
Explain the motivation of your protagonist, emotions of the characters involved during these plot turns should be recorded
  • How the major plot is resolved
The ending, the surprise factors, etc.. should be listed
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Points to remember/ Checklist:
  1. Give a clear picture – the roadmap of your novel (the complete skeleton) the reader/agent should not feel confused. Focus on clarity
  2. Don’t cram too many characters – just your protagonist, antagonist, and one or two major supporting characters
  3. No descriptions – No unnecessary details
  4. No to jargons
  5. Don’t refer other novels
  6. No adverbs and No cliches
  7. A good opening line is a good brownie point
  8. Use active voice
  9. Avoid the character’s backstory in the synopsis
  10. Don’t split your synopsis into sections/don’t use labels as you do while brainstorming
If you have more points to add, please feel free to comment 🙂

Take my money and publish my book!

Back with another Indian-Publishing-Scene post, if you’ve not read my Indian authors and book marketing post, please do!

Why this post? Because I hear a lot of issues between the publisher-author duo these days. To mention a few complaints:

  • The publisher won’t give the author royalty for the first 1000 copies.
  • The publisher asked to sign an agreement to buy 200 copies of your book.
  • The publisher has increased the MRP and is not ready to reduce which affects the book sales.
  • My book is out of stock, and my publisher refused to reprint.
  • My publisher is not sending my books to any bookstore.
  • I spent XXXXX on publishing my book, you know it’s my baby, but, I didn’t get any returns.
    dollar-sign-bookHaving published a book already, and having gone through the ups and downs of the publishing industry in a short span. I thought this had to be said.
    Dear Author, you’re facing these issues because of YOU. It was you who wanted to publish the book right away. It was your choice to go with a publisher whose vision is to make money than to produce quality literature.
    Gone are the days when writers had to send hard copies of their novel to a publisher, wait for their reply for a year and then send to another post rejection. There were authors who took years to get published, who worked hard on knitting their stories, editing it thoroughly and wanted to publish it for the love of literature. But, are we the same? We want fame. We want a book release every year, no matter what the story is, no matter how poor the paper quality is, no matter how bad the language is, no matter who reads it and what reviews we receive because money does it all. All it takes is 10,000 INR to get ten 5-star reviews right? You know reviewers who don’t read but post reviews. All it takes is just 25,000 INR to market your book on all Facebook groups, right?
    Vanity Publishing /Self-publishing platforms (Not all) have dragged and pulled the Indian literature down, but, why care? All we need is the author tag? Throw a few thousands and get published. No, am not blaming all, but at least 3/10 do this, as I acquainted almost 500+ authors and am a part of groups with 10,000+ writers all over India.
    Ask yourself. Do you see authors who published via the publishing houses that fall under the creamy categories complain? including those who self-publish/kindle publish as per their choice. Do you see them struggling hard to establish/market their books? As far as I know, not really, at least when compared to us – those who paid to get published.
    I can’t stop you from doing what you want my dear author, but, if I can give you a small advice – research about the quality of Indian literature and the books that are available. Understand where you are, work on your story, plot, language, grammar, diction, sentence structure, etc.. Hire a good editor and give the best possible manuscript to the right publishers who are passionate about publishing good books. Wait, even if it takes years. Choose your book reviewers right. Don’t send it to every tom, dick, and Harry, please! The best type of marketing is the word of mouth. And, that would eventually happen. If not now, sooner or later.
    I indeed published via a self-publishing platform; I learned a few lessons and now, am working hard to correct the mistakes and do well with my next release. I don’t deny the fact that there are good vanity published books and there are traditionally published bad books as well. But, the equation and weightage when thought through makes a difference.
    If this post helps to change even any one of the readers’ mindset – I’d be more than happy, else, I’d still be happy because I feel better when I blog.
    P.S — This post is not for anyone in particular, because, I have the habit of dealing it in person. This is a very common post addressing the most common issues of authors-publishers duo.
    Done ranting!
    Kavipriya Moorthy

Y for Young Adult Fiction #AtoZChallenge

The fault in our stars, looking for Alaska, Paper Towns, Mocking Jay, The Maze Runner, Perks of being a  wallflower and the list goes on and on and on! This era is the Young Adult Era where the all the more rare genre became the pepping hot genre of the global literature which includes Indian literature as well.
There are writers and authors I know who are gifted with the capability of jumping across genres and succeeding in every trial. There are a few who would choose to write a novel in the genre of the year. If you’re that, here is what you need to write a Young Adult Fiction.

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Here is the good news! Young adult is more of a target audience defined and the marketing strategies are also defined.
You can write a story so flexible where it is more like a thriller in which you can add elements of horror or fantasy or romance as per your choice.
Even adults these days read young adult fiction, as it is more like rewinding what is history!
So the age group of your audience is 9 years to 17 years or more.
If you have a plot in mind, and you want to flesh it out as a young adult fiction, here is what you need to concentrate on:
  • Generally, the protagonist is a young person falling under 15-18 year old
  • Use first person narrative
  • Pepper teen language throughout; don’t use sophisticated words that look bizarre. This also depends on the world building – a story based in the US will have a different language than a story based in a small interior town in India
  • Usually younger generation is well-known for the drama; they are usually narrow-minded and think of extremes so ensure that you use exaggeration. Even a forgotten record note would make them panic, if they fail in exams they would probably plan to run away from home. Use this properly!
  • The conversations need not be crispy and straight on face like those in Agatha Christie books. They usually speak with less or no analogies and use long sentences; they plead and fight a lot. Tap conversations, they are confidence in what they are and just do what they feel like doing – you can’t convince them, so tap immature talks and stubbornness.
  • Understand the hormones, and emphasis their keen nature – teens are very keen about things – right from sex to science. Add meat!
Hope that helps! Ensure that there is a vast different between Adult fiction and young adult fiction, research well, and pen down.

X for X-rated #AtoZChallenge

X-rated or Erotica – one genre that is difficult to pen, there are chances that you write excellently well or just go so blunt that you wrote the worst piece ever that would totally shame you.
I am so conscious about this, because, my next flick is a contemporary romance with a bit of erotica playing around. Hence, I started reading good number of books that fall under contemporary, erotica, X-rated, etc… This gave a clear distinction of what a good erotica is from the bad, firstly, Indian writers fail in diction more often than not. They write screw worthy words instead of right kinky stuff. Erotica gives you the liberty to pen explicit content and 18+ details but nevertheless, you are not destined to write something creepy.
Here is what you should know if you are writing Erotica or have it subtly playing its part in the novel.
One best writer who scooped me off with Erotica is Heather M Miles. Extremely well-written erotica which is even better than fifty shades of grey according to me, X-rated is one genre that is seldom picked in Indian Writing Arena, or, rather people would don’t want the tag and stuff the patty to call it a romance burger.
Writing sex scenes are pretty much same alike other scenes, but, you have to write it with extreme caution because sex scenes are going to paint the scene and the reader should rather feel good (Aroused – the best) but never ever screw their face saying ‘Ewwww!’ you get that? Please play around words that would make one feel better. Research enough, or rather write subtle than to use details but please don’t use euphemisms that are laugh worthy.
You need not write every minute detail of the scene, don’t start off with him pushing her on the wall to the final dressing part, your readers are well-sex educated, and you need not teach them stuff. Write enough but don’t flesh out that would make the reader feel bad about reading it. Bear in mind – sex scenes are never skimmed but read word by word, so this is where you have ultimate control over your reader and you can use this time to show how good a writer you are.
Don’t make a normal guy – a super gigolo type or a college girl like a strip tease performer all of a sudden. Give them the right details; sculpt them enough if you’re going to use it as such.
Rather, best is to write down your fantasy. Sex scenes or erotica novels are supposed to turn the reader on; else, you have failed big time.
When writing it down, keep off the thoughts that you’re family is about to read this and feel terribly bad about you, which happens in most cases though! I am lucky, that my parents don’t read my book.
 erotic-teacher

W for WritersBlock #AtoZChallenge

One of the terrible problems when you are working on a novel idea is a writer’s block where you literally find it extremely difficult to continue writing. This is more of a stress or a burden, if you have a deadline either by your publishers or by yourself because most of us are not full time writers given the investment and returns from writing.
Writing needs extreme discipline, it is just like dieting, you can’t just eat all you want and expect to lose weight. You have to surrender yourself and work enough concentrating on losing weight. Likewise, with writing, I know a friend of mine who typically sits like a robot at 11:00 PM and types away till 12 and I am of a type, who can ONLY write in the night when all are asleep. So, if you have a disciplined scheduled for writing – chances are that you seldom fall under this block.
Also, it is important to keep off distractions when writing. Many authors turn off internet, switch off their phone, lock themselves in a room or even travel across with their laptop in a cottage to type away their story.
There are many options like Artist’s way where you write 750 words early morning like a task, which will help you from falling apart.
Once you sense the writer’s block there are common things that you can try, first is to try something else – like painting or photography that are of interest other than writing.
You can use this dreading time to read, if you don’t have other hobbies than writing, eventually, helping you more in honing your skills.
I usually have the habit of traveling – I treat myself with a trip to a place that would keep me off from thinking anything else. I would mostly come back with a refreshed mind to write more, with a story-line or a plot idea, sometimes! So choose travel.
Else, take prompts from your friends or surf online, pick some plot and write a really short story on it. Try to flesh out a short story you read, or try to write a short story on the novel you read. So, basically, you’ll be writing something totally different from what you have ever written!
Take a break – even if you’re not in writer’s block, it helps you to be a better writer.
 writers-block

V for Vanity Publishing #AtoZChallenge

Vanity publishing – this is something I have discussed a lot about and I detailed reasons as to why one should NOT choose to vanity publish one’s work.
Here are my points that summarizes when one can choose to vanity publish
Vanity publishing is when the author pays upfront money to the publisher that usually ranges from 25,000 INR to 3 Lakhs as per the package the author selects.
Time = Money, once you choose to vanity publish, you need not do anything except to submit your final manuscript and pay the cash. All other things will be taken care by the publisher, all you have to do is to just approve.
You can choose to vanity publish when:
Please note: By now, you would have send your manuscript to many publishers who traditionally publish but failed miserably, yet you trust your script much and you still want the book to be released. Fair enough! So now go ahead!

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  • Royalty – In traditional you would not make more than 20-30 INR per book, with vanity, you get around 50 INR
  • Transparency – You get to know the count of book sold at ease, they are mostly very transparent. In vanity publishing, the publishers help you with a consultant who will readily hear you and do as per your say, so you need not work on anything at all. Your book sales, your promotions, author copies, etc.. are accessible in just one click
  • Quality – There are publishers who cost cut and publish books that are of bad quality. Books that are shrunk to fit the page, font size, the font, etc.. make it difficult to read. In Vanity, you get the best quality. Paper quality, cover quality, font size, page nation, etc.. are done properly to fit the market standards
  • Distribution – Your book will be distributed online fairly well, the book will never go out of stock. There are vanity publishing companies that also do offline distribution if the books do well in the market.
If your manuscript gets rejected by traditional publishers but you still trust your script or if you have money than time or if you want better quality of books than those published by second tier or hybrid publishers or if you want your book to be priced reasonably less (self-published books cost more than traditionally published books) – go for vanity! Take a call!

U for Understatement #AtoZChallenge

One important aspect of writing is the use of figure of speech, something we seldom do.  Having read enough Indian author books – There are a few who use it extremely well and there are a few who just don’t know what it is. I know pals who write novels that sounds like reading information at Wikipedia. So here is one of the less explored areas – understatement.
You write less but it is deeper enough for the reader to understand a lot from it. There are many micro tales and harsh realities post of mine that gets comments that they are deep. Those stories are pretty much lesser than 40 words, this is the role of understatement.
Overstatement is just the opposite of understatement where everything in detailed manner, a reader would eventually just skim through and not read properly when overstatement is used. Ensure you use overstatement only when it is relevant.
You can try writing a scene using both overstatement and understatement to understand the difference that it makes, the less you write, the more careful you are about using words that are very deep and you move on easily.
Don’t use overstatement unless it is poetic, or beautiful. Use frequently used idioms, or figure of speech to convey. Use terms like “Days rolled” or “After a few years” to change timeline and use the mood you have previously created to subtly say what would have happened in between.
Here is an example of understatement from my own kitty!
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