Archive for July, 2011

How flexible is your shoe size?

July 30, 2011 8 comments

If you are a regular visitor here, you probably know that I have been struggling with my book for a long time now. If you aren’t (or if you don’t know), well – I’ve told you.

The last analysis that I did led me to conclude that I need to re-think the plot and possibly get started all over again. While I have been doing that, I still do not have a sufficient comfort level about the whole thing. What could be lacking now? Let’s see…

  • Re-develop the plot – check
  • Rewrite the story – check
  • Do the character sketches – hmmmmm…

So that’s where the current problem lies! I have started working on it, but then that’s only step 1. Once the character sketches are complete, I need to immerse myself in them – at least enough to know my characters inside out. To be able to know what each character will do in a given scenario: the words that they will use, their body language, their facial expressions, everything. If I don’t have a grip on this – for each character – I don’t think I’ll be able to write the story, let alone make it believable.

Ergo, here are the targets for the next two weeks:

  1. Complete the character sketches
  2. Absorb them all so that I can step into anyone’s shoes at the drop of a hat

Thought for the day

July 28, 2011 2 comments

If there’s a wildfire in the forest, and there’s no around to see that happen, does it still radiate heat?

Something missing, monsieur?

July 25, 2011 4 comments

We went into the mountains over the weekend. We were at the Grand Lake for the most of the day – we took a boat ride, enjoyed the sun and the breeze, and rented a tandem kayak and spent an hour paddling.

My “delight” quotient started to increase early in the morning when we loaded stuff into the car, and reached it’s peak when we were sitting still right in the middle of the lake – not paddling, not doing anything at all.

In the evening, we packed up, and drove home. As we left US-40 and hit I-70, I was the only one awake. By the time we took the ramp on to I-25, I could literally sense my emotional energy leaving me.

And I think this “emotional energy yo-yo” has been part of me for God knows how many years now.

My mother always says that my 24X7 smile disappeared the moment I started college. 10 years ago, when I got my first job, I was always the optimist, even if not smiling. But now, what is left is cynicism, acceptance of the world, and a generous dose of reality.

Don’t take me wrong – I am not asking for the old days back; I love it the way everything is right now. But sometimes I do wonder – could it have been different?

A blessing in disguise

July 21, 2011 2 comments

I love music. While I listen to classic rock and blues once in a while, my primary interest is in heavy metal. It’s not a liking that many people share, so most of my listening sessions in India would happen in my car. Back there, I have a Sony music system into which I can plug in a pen drive chock-full of heavy metal. My pen drive holds my entire collection, but I also have playlists for my most favorite songs.

But that was India.

Here in Denver, I bought a used car. It does have a CD player – even a CD changer, but it does not have a USB or even an AUX port to take a connection from my mp3 player. The CD changer does not support the mp3 format. I can’t even imagine trying to fit 6GB worth of songs into audio CDs.

I tried to have my morning commute in silence, but you can do it only for so long. Finally over the past few days, I have taken to channel surfing on the radio, trying to see if I run into a song I like. Usually this involves15-20 minutes of changing channels, between which I catch half a song or two.

Today morning, however, I managed to catch a hint of a riff when browsing frequencies. I jogged back again, and latched into a local band playing great metal. (Un) fortunately, there were 3 accidents on the interstate, and instead of the usual 15 mins drive, I had to drive for almost an hour. Over that hour, I listened to about 6 songs, only one of which was from a band I recognize (AC/DC). The rest were groups I had never even heard of before, but not even for a moment did I feel like changing the channel.

I don’t think I will be missing my metal collection in my car, at least while I am in Denver.

Thought for the day

July 14, 2011 2 comments

You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.

–  Jack London

Rain, Rain (don’t) go away

July 11, 2011 1 comment

Heavy rains and thunderstorms were predicted for yesterday evening; we were at the temple when the sun hid behind the clouds. The temple is at an elevation, and if you stand outside, you get a splendid view of the mountains and the countryside. As we stood in the parking lot, clouds continued to gather, and the gentle breeze slowly turned into a gale. In the distance, thunder streaked across the sky- a beautiful yet frightening sight. We got into the car, and not too soon, for the rain started almost immediately. In the evening, the sun peered out for a few minutes and treated us to a magnificent double rainbow. The downpour eased back to a drizzle, but was still on when we retired to bed.

In the morning, I took my cup of coffee into the patio. The earth was dry, but the clouds were still out there. I reminded myself to carry an umbrella to office, and went back inside to get ready.

As predicted, light rain started around afternoon, and it was still raining when it was time to go home. The highway was packed full of slow moving traffic, and the lights reflected on the wet tarmac – red on one side of the divider, yellow on the other. The usual highway commute of 15 minutes took twice as long, but we were four of us in the car and spent the time chatting and joking.

Back at home, my wife was in a good mood too – rains after a hot spell always cheer us up. She brewed her special black coffee, and we spent a great evening.

The past two days had “Mumbai monsoons” written all over them. Sadly, we are in Denver right now. Next year, though, we will enjoy the Indian monsoon first hand.

The eye in the sky

July 6, 2011 Leave a comment

I am the eye in the sky, looking at you

I can read your mind

I am the maker of rules, dealing with fools

I can cheat you blind



– “Eye in the sky”, The Alan Parsons Project