Posts Tagged ‘a writer’s life’

It’s been slow going on most fronts – the cover design (we’re taking all suggestions into account and taking our time over it, too), the third novel and the social scene. Which means I have a lot of time on my hands. Which means I’m looking for ways to fill that time, preferably by engaging in mindless activities. Like watching TV. Alas, that isn’t to be.

A friend of mine told me an interesting statistic. He said that that since the advent of the set top box, the number of hours people spend in watching TV had gone up dramatically. Well, duh! With 232 channels (if you live in Bombay you don’t have to subscribe to individual channels or bouquets. You pretty much get everything.) it stands to reason you’d spend at least a couple of hours surfing. So that straightway adds to your TV viewing time.

Apparently it isn’t so. According to him, people are actually watching more. Because they have more to watch. This made me wonder, what exactly are people watching? ’Cos I have a set top box with and I still can’t find anything to watch!

You see, the first problem with so many channels is incessant surfing. I can’t stick to one channel in case I’m missing out on something much more fun elsewhere. Like on Australia Network or Deustche News or Russia Today. Makes me kinda wish they’d given a Chinese Channel too while they were at it.

Anyway, coming back to the point about missing out exciting stuff, turns out, I’m not. When I first got it and saw what all was on offer I was mighty thrilled. I had two BBC entertainment channels! Wow, at last, I would be able to watch all those understated British comedies. Well, there aren’t many of those. Unless you want to see re-runs of Fawlty Towers and ’Allo ’Allo. P.S.: You can watch all the Weakest Link you want.

Then there are all these channels like MM2 and Mnet and Show Series and Show Comedy and keep advertising about all these great shows – Jay Leno, Jon Stewart, Ladies No. 1 detective agency etc – but I haven’t yet figured out the time or the channel. I can’t figure out who or what Orbit Showtime is. Is it a bouquet of channels or just the one? Are Super Comedy and Show Comedy a part of Orbit Showtime? If so, which channel is what show on? It is too confusing (yeah, I know I’m slow). It’s easier to go back to Star World.

Also, there are no extra movie channels. At least not ones showing movies I want to watch. The one thing I can’t complain about is not getting enough sport. With some 15 sports channels I have the sporting universe pretty much covered (I especially like watching poker on Zee Sports. Awe.Some.). And then there these encrypted Data Channels whose purpose defeats my limited intellect.

At last we come to the point of this post. And the point is, that my life hasn’t changed at all post STB. I think I’m going to have to watch my nails grow for entertainment.

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One of my readers asked me why I don’t write on the subject of writing so much. Well, there is only so much gyaan I can dish out. The rest is up to you, the writer.  You have to start writing. And in case you already have, stick to it. If you don’t write no amount of advice is going to help. If you do, then no advice is necessary.

Because advice is only advice, after all. It is only a general guideline and subject to individual interpretation/adaptation. I’ll tell you what I did at the beginning. I read all the advice and promptly discarded it the moment I found my style.

Examples of advice/rules I bend:

1.      Never begin a sentence with ‘and’ and ‘because.’ And I do.

2.      Stay away from cheesy alliterations. Which I use ubiquitously.

3.      Avoid long sentences, which generally should be no longer than 21 words. Now that’s a good rule and should be followed because often times by the time the readers have reached the end of the sentence they have to go back to the beginning to figure out what the beginning premise was.

4.      Keep exclamations under control. Surprise! That I do follow!

5.      Don’t be vague on…you get the drift.

Besides I figure, writing about a writer’s life is just as illuminating. People are often flummoxed when I tell them I write for about 5-6 hours a day. And envious, saying things like, “Only 5 hours a day!” Trust them to pick up the smaller number.

But it’s true. I don’t write all the time. I write from morning till about 3.00 p.m. That’s when I have my lunch while watching the Bold and the Beautiful. Don’t ask me to, I can’t explain it. Just put it down to a quirk and leave it at that.

At 3.30 p.m. I promptly take a nap. When I wake up I generally lounge around till it’s cool enough to go for my run. Afterwards it’s dinner and a movie.

I pick up my laptop only afterwards, if at all.

While we are on the subject, and in the interest of guarding my relatively easygoing lifestyle, anyone who’s interested in writing comedy may contact the creative director of Sun Yaar Chill Maar at UTV. They are looking. Oh, and you should be Bombay-based. A bit obvious really.


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