In a fit of stupidity, I had approached a published author. “I have written some short stories, how can I publish them?” I had asked. He said, “Contact a publisher only when you have an edited manuscript worth 50,000 words. And remember there is no guarantee that your stories will be published.”
Why should I strain my neck and tire my fingers typing fifty thousand words, when the herculean effort was likely to go waste? For an inherently lazy person , it was too much to ask.
‘Forget it,” I would rather blog, I thought. “Why should any story or character confine me?” So I continued writing at my own pace and free will. A freebird!
Today morning, I realized that I have written more than hundred posts for my blog and another hundred odd articles for other web-sites and publications. No, I am not blowing my trumpet. But if my mathematics serves me right, with an average of five hundred words per post, I have surely crossed the dreaded fifty thousand word limit in less than two years. A book was possible.
With all due respect to published authors, we have to keep in mind that every middle class Indian who speaks the language is either busy writing a novel or dreams of writing one. Engineering colleges have become a writer’s hub after an IIT-ian became a best-seller with his unpretentious prose. Critics called his prose pedestrian, but the masses lapped up his stories. With most celebrities writing books, the writing bug is in the air. Don’t be surprised if Mallika Sherawat announces the launch of her tell-tale book with titillating torturous stories of her tiresome life. Ten bucks, she will write a book. Anybody?
As for me,blogging has been fun. And since I have been wandering in the blogosphere for some time, let me share some nuggets.
As in television and films, there are two ways to grab eyeballs in blogosphere. The short-cut entails writing controversial articles which ridicule religion, culture or saints. Politician bashing will not get you anywhere. People do not want to read about pollies. Instead the temple of democracy could pass a privilege motion against you. Worse, income tax guys can drop in for a cup of coffee.
So what should you blog about?
Write why Sachin’s hundred hundreds were a fluke.
Dwell on reasons why Sachin or a Sourav should not get Bharat Ratna. Convince people why Navjot Singh Sidhu deserves it more than anyone else. He does.
Reveal that Ranbir Kapoor is a wild card entry on Mallika's swayamvar show. Argue that Vivek Oberoi would have been a better choice.
Or else, say Katrina and Sunny Leone are not sexy; they evoke sisterly feelings.
Write about Arnab's private life. Or about the party where Arnab and Rajdeep came to blows for a bottle of Old Monk.
The blogdom is yours. Party!!
If you want the long way home, then write well, read blogs, engage with your readers, be patient, blah, blah…Yes, it takes months and years to get sizable traffic, even if you are good. The bright side is that even if you don’t get readers, you are sure to make wonderful friends. If you are a woman, you will be surprised to note how women bloggers protect you like mother hens. It is heartwarming.
On to the critics. Jump with joy if you manage to get genuine critics. Respect opinions as blogosphere thrives in the cacophony of arguments. Which is why I need genuine critics just as Rahul baba needs a genuine speech writer. Don't worry about anonymous perverts who shower you with the flowery lingo of the 'F' variety. Ignore them.
The reader who neither comments nor blogs, and yet reads your blog is precious. Value him/her. Welcome to the cathartic world of Blogosphere! May the (mass*acceleration) be with you.
Warning: It is addictive!