130. Meeting the one who arrested God

Samrat Upadhyaha

Today I got to meet Samrat Upadhyay in person. He was way taller than I thought he would be, and way nicer than I imagined. And, unlike many writers, he had an amazing voice and impressive presentation skill (many good writers are bad speakers, most of the times).

Thanks to Edushala, I was invited to participated in a two hour mini workshop with Upadhyay (and two of his students from an American university). It was 120 minutes well spent. We did a few activities to help us generate ideas and content for any creative writing. But I enjoyed listening to him explain about his writing process and his style.

Thank you Samrat sir for your suggestions on how to make my writing more realistic fiction.

Here are some of the excerpts from his talk:

“I am a hardworking writer. I am not a genious writer (like Laxmi Prashad Devkota). I have to go through multiple drafts, sometimes even 20 drafts.”

“Read a lot. Reading is half writing already. But read the classics. I don’t recommend you read stuff like Chetan Bhagat. Well, if you want to read that kind of stuff, read it but don’t get influenced by that kind of writing.”

“It’s okay to imitate your favorite writer’s style, because eventually, if you keep writing, you will get over that style and will create your own.”

“There is nothing pure or original in art.”

129. Should a teacher hold grudge towards student?

Last week, I came to find out that a student had complained about me to my coordinator. Naturally, my first reaction was: WTF!

Yes, I got angry for a while. I imagined punching the teeth out of that student’s whiny mouth. Then my anger gradually frothed to cold grudge towards the student. “Wait, you asshole. You’ll see how your internal marks will look like”. I wanted to teach that student a lesson.

I am a teacher but I am not a superhero. Nope, I don’t have that feeling anymore. May be it was a genuine complain. May be it was a miscommunication. But I’m so fallible. So damn fallible that I might screw up some day.