Spotlight: ‘Draupadi – The tale of an empress’ by Saiswaroopa Iyer

The Blurb :
Being born a princess, and raised by a loving father and three doting brothers would make life seem like a bed of roses to any woman. Born out of the sacred fire, Draupadi is no ordinary woman, and her destiny cannot be to walk the beaten path. Witnessing estrangement and betrayal within her own family makes her perceptive and intuitive beyond her years. Complicated marital relationships, a meteoric rise and a fateful loss, humiliation unheard of and a pledge of revenge, all culminating in a bloody war—her ordeal seemed never-ending. Yet she stands up to it all—never succumbing, never breaking. One of the most unforgettable characters of the Mahabharata, Draupadi shows what a woman is capable of. Told with great sensitivity and passion, this book brings alive a character of epic proportions that resonates with every reader across space and time.

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Adding a dash of humor to your writing

This week I’m going to talk about adding humor to your writing.

I can’t write a blog on humor with mentioning my favorite author.

“If you take life fairly easily, then you take a humorous view of things. …making the thing a sort of musical comedy without music, and ignoring real life altogether.”
PG Wodehouse

PG Wodehouse’s comic genius is something to aspire to; however, not all of us write comedies. What, then, is the point of adding a comic touch to our writing? Indeed, in that case, what is the purpose of this blog?

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It’s a New Year – 2019

Everything’s new
– it’s always so –
for this moment’s already gone.

It was sparkly and fresh
– but so ephemeral –
that it’s virtually a memory now.

Live for the moment
– not for later –
make the most of now

…while it’s sparkly and fresh,
new and beguiling,
make now the end of your rainbow.

May your now be brilliant,
adventurous, delightful;
May you dance in its beguiling arms…

…before the newness fades,
and it drowns in the whirlpool
of a memory that’s fickle and jaded.

Happy New Year, Dear Lovely People!

Google Play Books for self-publishing authors

This week I’m going to talk about publishing on Google Play Books.

I’ve used Amazon KDP and Smashwords, and have always wondered about Google play Books so I thought I’d read up a bit about it.

In the words of a writer for the Independent Publishing Magazine:
“What more could a self-published author want? The world’s largest search engine combined with the world’s largest e-bookstore.”

Um…my research threw up
some interesting findings and the chief one is that it isn’t as easy
as all that.

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Flashback in Fiction

What is a flashback?
It is a scene narrated in the present timeline but it pertains to something that happened in the past – something that took place before the current story starts.
A flashback refers to an event so compelling and powerful that it sits in the character’s memory – and it has contributed to make the character who she is.
How can you tell if your story needs a flashback?

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He said, she said: Dialogue Tags

This week, I’m going to talk about Dialogue Tags.

If my book characters say something, how will readers know who spoke?
How will they know who said what when they can’t physically see or hear the characters?

Through dialogue tags, that’s how. Dialogue tags are phrases or sentences that tie or tag a character to a particular dialogue.

Consider this conversation (Example A):
‘What on earth are you doing?’
‘How is it any of your bloody business what I do?’
‘It is my bloody business because this is my bloody house!’

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Is your writing clichéd to the hilt?

A cliché is a phrase that is symbolic or figurative rather than literal; for example: I am over the moon. Really? Clearly not, unless you are in a space ship, in which case it is a literal situation and therefore not a cliché.

A cliché can be an idiom, as in the example above; a metaphor [it was the final straw]; a simile [she sank like a stone]; or a proverb [knowledge is power].

At one time, eons ago, it was considered natty to use such phrases in speech and in writing. The concept was still new and they sounded clever.

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B is for Burnout

This week, the letter is B, and I’m going to talk about Writer’s Block and Burnout.

Let’s first distinguish Writer Burnout from Writer’s Block.
I read an interesting take on the topic at Litreactor.com:
When the voices in your head refuse to speak to you, it is Writer’s Block, but when they’re shouting at you to put pen to paper, and you simply cannot, that’s Burnout.

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A is for Anti-heroes

Welcome to “Authors’ Tips – A to Z of Writing”

This is a new series of blog posts where eight of us – Devika Fernando, Preethi Venugopala, Paromita Goswami, Adite Banerjie, Ruchi Singh, Sudesna Ghosh, Saiswaroopa Iyer and I – will post on a myriad of writing-related topics with the topic corresponding to the Alphabet of the Week.

We are starting with the letter A, a very good place to start, and Adite has set the ball rolling with her post on Authenticity in Writing. I am writing on A is for Antiheroes

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When Mita meets Tanay: featured by Ruchi Singh

Excerpt: Tanay and Mita’s first meeting

Mita took an appreciative sip of the wine and looked up, over the rim of her goblet, straight into a pair of sardonic eyes. The eyes, in a dark, bearded face, stared her down from across the room, one eyebrow arched in amusement; or was it disdain?
Irked for some reason, she raised her own eyebrow at him, although she was more in the mood to frown and turn away. The stranger held up a glass of amber liquid in a toast, and something in his expression wasn’t very polite. He made no move towards her and that in itself was rude, almost insolent.
Mita’s chin went up and it was unfortunate that she had a generous quantity of

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