Saturday, August 27, 2016

#399 : Key takeaways - Workshop : Art & Craft of Writing

Story mirror

Poetry and Plays have never been my cup of tea. Books and essays were my thing and still continue to be. When Mr.Shashidar shared the invite, I found it prudent to lap up the chance to step out of my comfort zone.

The workshop was held at Apparao Galleries - a peaceful and beautiful place to conduct a creative workshop.  I reached the venue about 15 minutes early to find it quite empty. However, within the next 15 minutes that changed quickly and the room filled up. Ms.Nandhitha, Mr.Shashi and Mr.Devendra, welcomed all the participants personally before starting the session. It was rather refreshing to see a writer and a publisher mingling casually!

We dived right into business and the co-host gave us a brief introduction of what to expect. She also spoke of her experience of working with one of the speakers - Mr.Shashidar.

He kicked off the session by reciting a haiku which was closed to his heart titled "Suicide" and then went on to detail his experience in writing Haiku.

So here are the key takeaways from the first session - Ten Tips on Writing Haiku

  1. Haiku is a short form of poetry which conveys a clear picture of a particular moment with very few words.

  2. It has a structure of 3 lines, in the pattern of 5-7-5 syllables

  3. The best way to start writing Haiku would be to use pictures. Click and write on the go - A notepad, pen and a camera are your best friends.

  4. The essence of Haiku lies in the simplicity of words yet powerful meaning it conveys.

He also showed us examples of Haikus that he wrote and published in his blog.

Inspired by this session I decided to take up writing Haiku. The very next day when I started off, I realized one thing - It's a lot of word play. My brain is wired to elaborate settings and emotions in a rather eloquent manner. Penning down something so short yet powerful is not easy. I googled about and found this app - HaikuJam to get into the groove of putting words to effective use and it has helped me a lot.

The second session was by Mr.Devendra Jaiswal - Publisher - Story Mirror. This publishing house has been launching authors left and right in a very short span of time. He elaborated about the current trends in the publishing scene and threw light on the process of submitting a novel.  This session was quite interactive as quite a number of participants of the workshop were aspiring writers/published writers.

The next session was something I personally looked forward to - Mr. Timeri N Murari's session on writing plays. The first play I watched was "Chocolate Krishna" by acclaimed actor/playwright Crazy Mohan. That play was one laugh riot. The setting was minimal but the script was outright hilarious. Needless to say, the actors lived up to the script.

Mr.Murari emphasized for the need to focus on writing naturally instead of writing for the larger public - the #hastag generation. He elaborated his experience in shrinking a script of a full length movie into that of a play. He spoke on how advancement in technology is helping the theater business. One particular line of thought from his session, which stuck with me was the beauty of characterization and crisp dialogues in a play. It's not possible to make the characters "think" live on stage. Of course, a narrator can be used for that, but it will simply end up putting the audience to sleep. Also, a playwright cannot afford to add in the backstory of the character to the play yet the actors need to know that backstory so that they can get into the characters head and soul.

It was a refreshing experience to hear about two forms of creativity I am not used to. I also got to meet and socialize with a varied group aspiring writers, published writers and fellow bloggers from the city.

Hats off to Story Mirror, Mr.Shashidar Sharma, Mr.Devendra Jaiswal, Mr.Timeri N Murari and Ms.Nandita Hariharan for putting up such a great show.

[caption id="attachment_1586" align="alignnone" width="2048"]IMG_1791 That's us with the speakers :)[/caption]


  1. A neat summary.
    It was great getting to know you all.

    I agree with you on the Haiku writing - it's tough for me because I am one who dismantles stuff to know them well. Objectivity kills the essence here.