What I Learned From My First Million Words of Crap

Last week, on Friday, 26 June 2015, sometime around noon, I wrote my millionth word of finished fiction. I did not realize it immediately. But I keep a running word counter on my computer, and when I entered the 3500 words or so that I wrote that day, the magic number popped up in the […]

How Do You Combat Envy?

Last week, I came down with a bad case of envy. It hit me without warning. One moment I was perfectly happy scrolling along my Facebook wall, and the next thing I know I am suddenly burning all over in green flames. What happened was that I chanced upon the fan page of a good […]

First Look: The Puppeteers of Palem

Back Blurb The village of Rudrakshapalem awakens, and tells her tale. Five friends return to the village of their childhood to find that nothing seems to have changed, and at the same time everything has. Whose voice is it that called them back, and whose hand is it that now hunts them down, one by […]

On Saying Thank You

Back when I was working for IBM, after a particularly grueling client meeting, my boss and I went out to lunch. After we ate in silence for a while, each nursing our own thoughts about the massacre that went on in the conference room, he cleared his throat and said, ‘Thank you very much for […]

Questions on Female Feticide that We Must All Ask Ourselves

Feticide. Saving the girl child. Killing in the womb. I was at the movies the other day. Before the main reel began to roll, they showed us a short film of a female fetus singing from the womb to her parents. That she wanted to live. That she wanted to grow into a real person. […]

2 Different Ways to Achieve Self-Confidence

One of the entries to my contest on mythological characters spoke about conformity and individual expression. Here’s an excerpt from the comment: The character is Tyler Durden, the protagonist of Fight Club. He is an anarchist who believes that society conditions us to abandon our dreams in favor of conformity. He builds a secret club where […]

Novel Excerpt: Man on a Bike

Some scenes have a way of sticking in the head, like signposts. This one, taken out of Banquet on the Dead, is one that is close to my heart. My father, after having read the novel fully, said, ‘This is a bad book. You goofed up in many places. But that scene in which the inspector goes […]

Flash Fiction: An Unfinished Story

Back in 2008, Livejournal conducted a flash fiction contest where 500-word-stories had to be written on the theme: journal. They gave us a sop saying that all selected stories ‘might’ go into a published book, and we were allowed to send in more than one entry. I sent in five. I’m serializing them on this blog. This is the […]

Nietzsche on The Art of Suffering Well

Yesterday, I was talking to a friend about this and that, and talk eventually turned – as it seems to do a lot these days – to the subject of happiness. After we exchanged a few superficial words about it, my friend slammed down his glass on the wooden table and said with vehemence, ‘The main […]

Does Pornography Promote Male Domination?

I take it that the debate on pornography and its effect on society is at least a few centuries old. There have always been a certain group of people vying to define what is ‘good’ and to control what the others should or shouldn’t see. I’ve never given much thought to the matter, but have […]