Things have not been the same for me ever since my 34th birthday. On my 34th birthday, my wife, Dhanya gifted me with 34 books. Thirty-four print books, a backpack, and a brand new smartphone with facilities one could only imagine in a sci-fi story.
Today, on 4 February 2018, I must acknowledge how differently my life has changed. Although I cannot bring my complete feelings into words, I could at least node my head at the change of scenario. It’s difficult sometimes, to give words to deepest thoughts. That was one of the reasons why I always shied away from reviewing author Paulo Coelho’s books; also Richard Back, Brian Weiss, and many others. I could not bring myself to the point where I could talk about these people’s works objectively. There was not even the case of subjective bias. I was just spellbound after reading these authors. Same is the case with that wonderful moment when Dhanya gave a big box weighing a ton. I remember myself thinking how would I be able to express myself fully while I was taking the books out of the box one by one- one after the other; thirty-four different stories, thirty-four different lifetimes.
Imagine a flame that shines in front of you in the darkness. That moment when she gifted those books was like looking at a flame. The difference was that this flame set ablaze not just the darkness of lethargy surrounding me but the inner consciousness of my spirit.
This event coincided with the publication of my new book Those Tales Called Blue. My publisher also discussed at the same time about bringing out a paperback version of the book. Initially, we were discussing only an eBook version. That was mostly because Those Tales Called Blue includes selections from my first book Wall of Colours and Other Stories. We wanted our readers to have affordable copies of the book in their hands.
The idea of a print book initiated within me a new hope regarding the future of my books. Although I was not perturbed by the idea of the eBook, print version always captivated me. I felt fulfilled and satiated when I held the print version in my hands. The eBook version filled me with discontent. A feeling overwhelms me that the book does not have an existence. Perhaps, I was wired in an old-fashioned way.
I am hopeful that readers, old and new, would find my new book quite interesting. With Those Tales Called Blue my intention is to reach a new audience also who hadn’t come across my works.
Those who bought and read Wall of Colors and Other Stories might ask why haven’t I released the new book, the second book in the Hope, Vengeance, and History trilogy yet.
The second book in the Hope, Vengeance, and History trilogy is getting ready in the kitchen, by the way. The fruit of waiting would be sweeter. My dear readers have to wait for some more time.
I must reveal one thing. I am compelled to do so actually.
The book, the second one in the Hope, Vengeance and History Trilogy, is titled (as many of you already know) Clenched Hands, Bloody Nails. This book, even before its birth, has surprised me. In many ways, I was surprised. Mostly, I was caught by the way it evolved itself.
The final volume that will come to you would be a great new collection of short stories full of surprises.
What I want to reveal is that Clenched Hands, Bloody Nails changed in many ways from the initial way that I conceived it. All for the better, I could say.
But you have to wait for some more time. I will update the details on the Facebook page dedicated to Clenched Hands, Bloody Nails.
With my new book Those Tales Called Blue my attempt is to break up the big volume, Wall of Colours and take those little parts to new readers at affordable prices in both eBook and print form. As I mentioned, the idea for the print form (that too at an affordable price) came later.
Those Tales Called Blue will be followed by another selection from Wall Of Colours And Other Stories. This new collection will be titled Those Tales Called Red. This will be followed by another, titled Those Tales Called Yellow.
My existing readers might ask me what is new about these collections.
I would say that these collections also include my “Reflections” on the various stories spearing therein, their origin, the process of writing, etc. For this reason, I have the firm faith that even those who bought and read Wall of Colours and Other Stories would find these little volumes full of new insights and useful tips for storytelling.
Eight books will come out of this new venture.
An important message that I would like this post to share with you is that books do not lose their significance. The concern is not about a particular format. Perhaps, my personal preferences could bias you towards print books. Let me warn you, these are personal choices. However, the pleasure, pain, and light that come through to us while engaging in the reading activity are irreplaceable. When someone replaces those ‘things’ that particular culture in which it happens become hostile places to live, a wasteland.
That is why I am still searching for a way to say thank you to Dhanya for she kindled in me the spirit that had yearned to shine through the darkness of the age.