Attempting to write

Every time I turn to my notepad and ink-pen, a was starts within me. A war between what to write and what’s coming out. A constant struggle between the compulsive desire to fill the pages with hopelessness, dreariness and frustration inside, and a desire to create something hopeful, with colors of life in an attempt to transmit the same colors, same hope inside me.

As I look at the pages, I keep scribbling something, crossing it again and again, doodling, writing forgotten names and commonplace words to fill the gaping blank of the page which demands to be written on.

I write a line, a sentence which keeps coming on in my mind. I still don’t know whether to write prose or poetry. Been writing a lot of poetry lately, but I know the shackles of poetry are too rigid, and I more often than not end up deceiving myself, by ending up with something entirely different from what I had started with. I know I’m bad with poetry.

Still struggling to make sense out of the sentence I had just written, checking the intermittent desire to cross the damned thing and start over again, I compromise with a few sentences. After the compromise, it’s a little easier to go further. Either the compromise ends up destroying the very idea I began with, and I produce a bastard, despised by me, or the compromise spares me and allows me to rebel in a few lines, and I’m spared the shame for my own creation.

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Nightmares of Narutoverse: Part Two

Finally, the bastard Sasuke shows his mug after months of torture. Oh, my eyes have already tears of sweet ol’ times welling up in them.

Over the last month, the manga couldn’t have become more lop-sided and haywire. I had almost given up on it. As if the grotesqueness of the war wasn’t enough, the deification of Naruto reached unprecedented heights. Any manga, heck!, any sensible story, would keep the balance of power between good and evil intact, or at least not disturb enough to cause disbelief. But the story, as it unfolded recently, defied all belief. It flew in your face, yelling “Fuck yeah! I am Naruto, and you are dead as a rat”. So much for his over-confidence. Not only did he achieve every power known in shinobi world, except for dojutsu, he invented new jutsus in the middle of the battles! Jesus H. Christ!

He’s already stronger than anyone on the planet, anyone who has even a cursory sense of shinobi powers and abilities can easily realize that. Infinite amounts of chakra, Sage mode, and now control over Kurama(the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox), and friendship and loyalty of other eight beasts. He is as good as Sage of Six Paths. Then why is this series even going on now? What is the point of hiding Sasuke so much, that now he’s become redundant to the story? Imagine, one of the best characters of the whole manga, absent for like ages, and now the story has moved so far ahead of him, that it will go on as well without him. He’s become redundant! What a mockery…

The open threads are swarming like honey-bees, biting the story in its ass. What the hell has been resurrected Madara doing all this time, cavorting with the Five Kages, since a month, while we see an overblown eulogy of Naruto in manga form. What about the plan he discussed only vaguely with Kabuto while fighting the Kages, which alludes to the real identity of Tobi? Where is Itachi hiding? This devaluation of the most important characters of the series in favor of over-emphasis on Naruto, has compromised the series badly. Gone forever is the glory of Shippudden, with the mighty Akatsuki, avenger Sasuke, Itachi’s sacrifice and Pain’s power.

Now, in today’s manga, Sasuke has shown his face finally. I wonder what’s the use? All this hiding for three months, just for an EMS? Naruto has reached the level of a God in these three months. What’s the use of their face-off now? Much as they try to make it credible, it has already lost much of its realistic feel already.

[Pics taken from: http://dailyanimeart.wordpress.com%5D

The Inimitable Charles Dickens

My literary education, of which I’m still in the pre-nursery stage, started with Charles Dickens.

Whenever I think about it, the first ‘real’ novel I remember to have read was ‘A Tale of Two Cities‘. For times before that, all the books are shrouded in one hazy entity in memory. It is with ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ that the gates of my mind opened into light. And Charles Dickens was the first Prophet, the Grand Old Man, the Bheeshm Pitamah if you will, towering tall over fellow Victorian Thomas Hardy, Russian revolutionary literature and Maxim Gorky, Coelho and Bach, ‘new-fangled’ Ernest Hemingway and ‘brooding’ Joseph Conrad, of my literary world at that time.

Dickens dreaming

I’ve been fascinated about many authors, distributed across history and genres. But never so much for anybody as for Dickens. My first fascination and the biggest one at that. Couldn’t have read the gigantic mass of David Copperfield, Oliver Twist, Sketches by Boz & Pickwick Papers but for that. And never have anyone’s writing delighted me so much. They always filled me with wonder and amazing delight on its brilliance and vividness of English language, and grandiose of the world he created in his novels.

My gateway into literature, Dickens’ nickname ‘The Inimitable’ suits perfectly on him.

Today’s children and teens rave about Harry Potter, Twilight (sigh), Chetan Bhagat, and Lord of the Rings (with all due respect to J.R.R. Tolkien). I consider myself extremely lucky to have grown up with Dickens, Hardy and Gorky.

Happy Birthday Mr. Dickens 🙂

Remembering: One year of blogging

Today is 5th February, 2012. A dull Sunday late morning. Even the sun is not in its full glory, hiding behind the clouds. And oddly, someone is playing a flute in the distance, a bit like a novice. Very unusual here. But I am happy, irrespective and independent of all that :). Because today, I’ve completed one year of blogging, starting Prairie Wind on 5th Feb, 2011.

This one year was most remarkable and colorful for what changes it brought into my life, possibly the biggest ever. So many events, so many memories related to blogging and trivia, so many new friendships, new vistas and opportunities.

The story of me starting this blog is not very pleasant and inspiring though. I had already had a playful stint with blogging two and a half years back, in my second year. At that time, I was a certified weirdo. I don’t know what was I thinking, didn’t try to connect to other blogs, didn’t publicize or anything, just wrote the damn thing and posted it. I suppose it went on sporadically for about 9-10 months after which I simply forgot about the blog.

Blogging came back to me less than a year after that. An old friend of mine, with whom I had lost touch recently, and wasn’t on best of terms, started blogging. Though he had started it in December, 2010, it came to my notice in Feb only. Old jealous fool that I am, I was stung to the quick. How could he start a blog, when I’m here, loafing around, after a disastrous attempt at blogging! 😀 This was just unacceptable to me, and thus started my second innings in blogging which I earnestly hoped would prove to be longer than the first one.

Looking back at that time, at my feelings of outrage, I think that proved to be a blessing in disguise, as it provided the initial thrust, which kept me kicking for about three months. On the face of it, it was just a one-off incident, which was not uncommon for an easily irritable and grudge-holding person like me. But it changed (it may sound a little hyperbolic, but it’s true) the course of my life. If we use Joseph Campbell’s analogy, I was entering the realm of the unknown, leaving the comfort, conceit and stagnation of my ordinary life.

Soon, things started rolling one after the other. Barely 2-3 days after starting the blog, I came to know Mayank Rajput. The obvious rapport soon developed into a great friendship and we’ve been sharing passions for writing, blogging, and all things weird and Aquarian since an year 😀 :). Here again, Joseph Campbell’s analogy of ‘Wise Mentor/Trusted Friend’ comes to mind, who magically appears on the scene as the journey starts.

First three months of February, March, April were like a roller-coaster ride. I was writing about all things under the sun, getting to know more and more people and their blogs. Met many great guys during that time.

During my internship days in Durgapur, my blogging matured a lot, and my heady excitement of writing like a madman subsided. Also, wrote a series of sketches ‘Durgapur Diaries’ which remain my most-loved and favorite pieces. Came in contact with Monica Verma, had a great time collaborating with her on her project The Forthright. Though I regret we parted ways soon, but I hope to keep in touch with her, and who knows, maybe collaborate again. That time, April to July, was one of the happier times in my life and that also showed in my writing. Lots of humor, wit and light-hearted sketches.

I had started my blog on Blogger, http://mitostargazer.blogspot.com. But soon, WordPress caught my attention and captivated me. I made my literature review blog on WordPress and later Gorky Cafe, but much as I thought about it, I could not decide to switch Prairie Wind on to WordPress. But finally, reason prevailed, and leaving a happy-go-lucky and moderately established blog on Blogger, I relocated Prairie Wind to WordPress. That came about halfway through my one year of blogging, and that marked a radical shift in my approach towards writing. Earlier I used to write a lot more about politics, social issues, humor, entertainment stuff. But I grew more and more detached from all this. I took interest in socio-political scenario, but didn’t have anything much to say to, or any inclination either. The focus got shifted towards, and is still on, abstract writing, pure literature, sketches and poetry. Wrote hell lot of dark stuff in August, September and October, which mirrored, more or less, my mental picture of that time. A slow ascent towards normalcy started in November, especially when I wrote the poem closest to my heart ‘I Write‘. Haven’t written much since then, complete absence in December, some abstract stuff in January.

Discovering blogging is one of the best things to happen in my life, after literature, music and (I think) chess. Also, as I realized, blogging acts as a stress-buster to me. Before blogging, the two and half years of college had been the most turbulent ones. Blogging made this year much much calmer, and calmed me from the inside. Sure there were a lot of adventures, but this time all of them were the good ones 🙂

Due to blogging I met some of the best and most interesting people in my life. Besides Mayank and Monica, Ruhi Sonal, with her amazingly balanced, no-going-over-the-top writing(and I love the rock-steady INove theme on her blog :D). John Coolvart, this boy is a blogging powerhouse. Sumit Nangia, we both share same passion for nature, the abstract, and of course, Manual of the Warrior of Light :). Sampada Chavan, who writes beautifully on literature and often verses, and with whom had some very interesting conversations (one even led to a full-fledged blogpost). Poet and thinker Manohar Kumar, and many more. And though I’m more of an outsider, still the blogging community I’ve seen is very nice. And last, but not the least, the infinite number of jokes, mischiefs and pranks, fake competitions, witty references, awesome incidents and legends built around blogging with friend, wingmate, and fellow blogger Aditya :). (At the time of completing the post, he stormed into my room, snatched the writing pad and threatened to burn my manuscript unless I repent for my ‘sins’ and mention him specifically as my inspiration. Old Bastard :D)

The only slightly bad thing that sometimes come to mind is that, over the year, I’ve gradually become more and more disinterested in writing about personal experiences. This is not out of privacy concerns, but rather too much focus on abstract stuff and attention on form and detail has made me reluctant to write about informal and mundane topics, which I used to write initially and in ‘Durgapur Diaries’, and which a majority of blogger write about (unless they stick to one particular topic or genre). I also have been harboring some thoughts(those with claws and fangs) regarding the current trends in blogging, but I’ll leave them for some other time.

Again going back to Joseph Campbell’s analogy, I guess “the belly of the whale” period is yet to come for me, going by last year, spent chilling out ;). So the only thing I pray and hope for is, whatever may come, I don’t stop writing.

Happy Blogging everyone 🙂