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2016: The year of traveling, writing, and heart-warming editing projects

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The year 2016 has been the year of traveling, visiting memorials, museums, meeting artists, writing, rejection slips, and being an Editor for two heart-warming projects.

The year: 2016 has been the year that I travelled a lot. It began with visiting my cousins at Kansas City, Missouri, and then visiting another set of cousins at Arlington Heights, Illinois.

In February, we visited the Milwaukee Cultural Museum on February 14, where we saw a stupendous show at the Planetarium. The show was based on the theme: love. We learnt stories of the star formations based on love, lust, jealousy, curses. It was engaging.

In March, I travelled home to India, meeting my family, friends, online poetry friends, organizing the Lakdi-ka-pul book launch in Saptaparni, in association with Twin City Poetry Club–planning the event, organizing it, traveling to different eateries while marketing it.

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In April, we travelled to Puri, Jeypore in Odissa, Delhi, Vizag. In Puri, we visited the beautiful beach, the Puri Jagannath temple and had the food in the temple; in Delhi, we visited our friends, had the sumptuous masala chai at a local bandi.

In May, we travelled back to Wisconsin; June – July: Hyderabad, India

August: Milwaukee Art Museum – we saw several paintings in exhibitions. From the classical paintings to the contemporary, it was a course in Art History, itself. The paintings on Haiti were so inspiring – they were interactive.

We went to Fox Lake, Madison’s devil’s Lake to witness the Fall Colours.

Raj, Pranav and I went to Pennsylvania to meet my family. We went to Washington DC, and visited the Lincoln Memorial, World War Memorial, Capitol, Washington Monument, White House, National Air and Space Museum, Newseum.

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In India, I met several people including the speakers for  the Writers Carnival. Meeting Sanghamitra ma’am and sharing her enthusiasm for poetry, activism, singing, was one of the highlights. Meeting Harimohan Paruvu and having coffee at Minerva café, discussing writing, editing, Nivasini and our other initiatives. Meeting Sravanthi from the Write Club, Hyderabad and watching her diligence in organizing the meetings, week after week. Meeting Rajesh, Kaustubh, SB, Akila, Satya, Ronnie.and other members of    the Twin City Poetry Club and the interactions was a memorable moment.

Back in Wisconsin, the Waukesha Public Library’s Book of the Year was To Kill a Mockingbird. The two-month long event of several initiatives included a documentary of the making of the book and the movie that I attended.  The people spoke about the spirit of the book, the movie, the timing of the book in the middle of the Civil War. Also, I met Scout Finch from the book and it was a revelation.

In November, a book launch of Milwaukee: Its Tradition, People and Places, took place at Radisson, Milwaukee. Meeting the writers, learning about their stories, and meeting Bridget, who deserves a post in itself, was an experience I’d relish.

 

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As an Editor, apart from the regular manuscripts, I had the opportunity to edit Nivasini’s The World I Write In, a collection of poems, prose pieces centered around visual impairment theme. It was a different experience and moved me. The stories were unique, revolved around ordinary heroes around us and most importantly none of them showed any sympathy.

I had been an advising Editor for a writer with a brain injury. She writes stories for children and they were unique. I had signed up to be part of Waukesha Literacy Council. The experience for both these manuscripts have been humbling. The writer is an intelligent person who refused to accept the standard grammar rules and questioned me multiple times.

Summarizing, 2016 had been a mixed bag with letters of rejections, acceptances, humbling experiences and being bowled over by the wonder called the world around us and the people who enrich it.

A few acceptance letters, book publications, and a few rejection slips

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 At the launch of Milwaukee: Its Tradition, People and Places, in which my story titled ‘At the Miller Park’ appeared.

 

 

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In Amaravati Poetic Prism

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 Acceptance letters

 

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Rejection letters

The year 2017 would be the year to focus on technique, form, focusing on quality rather than quantity. Also, I began to write in longhand in my notebook.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Write. Write. Write.

Read what you Write.

Read what others Write.

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