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Writers, Writing,

Writers are Special

Writers are special.

They are master storytellers who can weave a thought into characters with emotions. Throughout history, the writers are revered. But, they are hardly ever paid their dues; until and unless they are Shakespeare or Gulzar. Rest of the tribe struggles to make a mark, before they are lavished with praise and money. The sad truth, most of them are not. Once the story is shared, it is open to: Interpretation; Ridicule; Theft.

And, the story, the character and the interactions that the writer lived in their mind for days and months, ends with smirks, insults and what were you thinking? The story of the writer begins with a thought.  

A story is an extensive of the writer’s power of imagination, just like a building exhibits the power of an architect’s imagination. The words are not hastily crafted, they are nourished. The writer obsesses over each word and movement. They want to create a story that resounds with the heart of the readers.

There are sleepless nights. Days spent hunched over the writing pad or the keypad. Families shunned, as the story becomes one with the writer. Friends ignored, as imaginary friends dominate the thoughts. Parents forgotten, as the writer seeks validation and love from the publishers. Siblings lost, as peers become the go-to-source for healthy debates and unhealthy competition.  Children unattended, as the story whirls and churns in the mind, leaving no  space for the antics of the seed and soul.

The spouse is left to suffer. The writer is building an amorous relationship with the characters, showering them with passion (both love and hatred), casual conversations and indifference.

But, the writer remains unaware; living in self-imposed solitary confinement of the mind. They are consumed by the feelings for the protagonist and villain. They remain engrossed in telling the story, talking to themselves, writing for themselves and sharing a part of themselves.

Then comes the end. The story is complete, or is it? They go back and reread, shredding some words there, adding a new conversation, here. Doubts surface and the writer moves in the world seeking validation; adoration; praise. The publisher is hard to impress; the readers even more. Their minds are open to the vastness of other ideas and thoughts. They are unimpressed. A quick peek, a frown or a shrug and the story is left alone in the untouched, and forgotten pile. A fleeting moment, unremembered forever!

What are the readers looking for when they read? A return on their investment, or an emotionally charged story that remains indelible in their minds. The answer is both. The writer has worked without encouragement. The storytelling is nothing but a desire to share their ideas. 

Ideas they formed in their heads and hearts. Ideas they deemed necessary for the world to read. Ideas that now stand broken and unappreciated. Ideas that are now the death of a dream.

The writer knows not how they floundered and why?

They seek validation; they seek love; they seek to write again. Is it the hunger of grandiose, and greed to be revered? Or is it a simple tale of caring and sharing?

Whatever the reason. They are ready. Ready to take on the challenge of losing a bit of their life, again! Ready, for sharing a part of themselves, again, in the hope, they can now impress. Or depress themselves!

Like, Authornama said:

Writers are special!

We Teach! We Learn!

We become teachers from the day we are born. As we progress through life, we keep on teaching

We teach our:
Parents, the art of loving unconditionally and fiercely.
Siblings, the power of sharing and caring.
Grandparents, the abundance of love a heart can hold.
Aunts and uncles, to know that a heart cannot burst with love
Friends, the value of comradership are important to create fun experiences
BFFs. the art of listening to pain without letting go.
Cousins, that getting into scrapes together is the most fun thing to do
Teachers, to never stop wondering at how each new batch savors new information.
Classmates how to love, hare or admire subjects and school
Peers, the ability to look at things differently, with heated arguments
Colleagues, that hardwork and honesty promotes trust and brotherhood
Spouse, that the concept of two bodies and one life exists, may be, differently for us, but it does exist
Kids, the value of friendship, kindness and every thing else we know is important to be happy
Ourselves, continuously, the importance of contentment and staying in touch with ourselves and the ones we love

PM Modi Speech

#10Lessons PM Modi’s Speech Gives To Every Manager

After the resounding win in the Election 2019 in India, PM Narendra Modi gave his first speech at the joint parliamentary meeting of the National Democratic Party, before starting his second term. The leader of the country spoke like a true leader of modern business. After all the famous Winston Churchill once said, “Politics is not a game, but serious business.” PM Modi agrees with the ideology of Business and Politics. He knows that the nation is a business and should be run like one! His speech certainly indicates that sentiment.

As I listened to the speech, I could picture many leaders nodding their heads in agreement. Is it wrong to hope that the executives would have focused on the expressions of the attendees? With vicarious pleasure, maybe! The mighty MPs are as scared and humbled. They would have recalled similar meetings in their conference rooms with their reporting managers and CEOs, as individual and collective future were discussed. As a hard-working executive married to a Founder & CEO, I am in the unique position to understand both the vision of the Prime Minister and the dread of the MPs.

Here are my #10takeaways from this speech!

  1. You have to think of the larger goal – During his speech, the Prime Minister told his future and present MPs, “Work for your constituency, but don’t forget the country as a whole”. Go treat yourself to chocolate chip ice-cream if you have never heard this or as a leader said this! If you are an executive, your company may not be going places – so go ahead and look for a new job! Are you a leader who has never said this, then it is high time to buy an MBA book.
  2. You have to take care of your constituency – Each MP is elected from a constituency. The MP is responsible for ensuring infra, education, jobs, etc., for all the people in his or her constituency. Similarly, while executives work for the larger vision of their organizations, each wants their department to ace their performance. Don’t expect any business leader to say this – it is expected of you – just look at your KRAs! It is the classic case of Business in Politics!
  3. Energy – Most journalists and bloggers are focusing on the two words the prime minister used – energy and synergy. Now, if you are working with a successful organization or an entrepreneur who has come from one such organization, ‘Be energetic, people’ is a catchphrase you hear, and imbibe, becoming a part of you. All leaders want people with energy, but what about the laidback, and not so ‘lithe’? They are the ones holding the fort while the energetic are brandishing their swords, sorry, getting clients onboard!  
  4. Synergy – If this word does not begin to describe new age business lingo, then somebody, please reach out and give me a lesson. A quick search on Google shows this definition, “the interaction or cooperation of two or more organizations, substances or other substances, to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects.” For those of you going “What the funk”, it means when all employees work together, happily, then the business is a success. Leaders want it, employees want it, but individual goals can become, to put it nicely, roadblocks to companies shopping for success! It happened to the Congress – so, yeah, a break in synergy can happen anytime and anywhere!
  5. First Time Leaders – Shed Your Arrogance – In modern businesses, is arrogance a gift or a curse? We want all our leaders to be humble, but a certain arrogance, which stems from self-belief is required. As an executive and manager, I know the line separating belief from bumblebee is so thin it’s almost invisible! But, the PM, put the win in perspective, you cannot afford arrogance. Similarly, business leaders will have no qualms in telling their people, the need to be humble, always be available and remain attached to their roots. This is Politics in Business!
  6. Nothing is off-the-record – How true! How quaint! How modern! We all know the reality of social media. The permanence of a social post! When an MP speaks to a journalist off-the-record, the PM warned, don’t be surprised to see a news item the next day focusing on your words. Ok, your leader will not say this, but every seasoned executive knows that what they speak in hushed conversations is misinterpreted and told to the immediate boss and their boss! So, seriously, think, rethink, repeat and then speak!
  7. I am one of you –When PM Modi says this, we want to believe him! Every leader worth his salt says this! Every executive wants to believe! How many executives really believe this statement? How many leaders are not lip-synching? The ones who behave like they mean it are the ones who manage to scale new heights – their people are happy to follow them. For the rest, executives know you are lying, really we do. Say it, as you mean it, and then walk the talk!
  8. Give VIP Culture a boot – Imagine an India without the “Do you know who my father is?” culture. I cheered on hearing this and will give be highly impressed when (IF) it finally happens. But, in organizations, the client is the VIP as is the senior management. You can’t even think of giving them a boot! My takeaway – clients are partners and when there is respect and positivity, there is no VIP culture, just two separate energies synergizing! I am getting good at the business talks!
  9. Ambition and Aspirations – This is a big one – the PM spoke about national ambition and regional aspirations. In business terms, it is personal aspirations and business ambition or vice versa? If you know the difference, share the details. I believe aspirations are the stepping stones for ambition! The formula is – Aspire-Aim-Achieve. It’s not as simple or awe-inspiring as it sounds! The PMs NDA speech became wonderful with these words, but the magnitude of living up to these is huge? Executives and leaders know it so well – who has not attended seminars or created PPTs with objectives, strategies and tactics! That’s the finer print, or way forward, for these two lofty words.
  10. Women Power – Women have stormed the Lok Sabha in large numbers – the PM focused on this with a smile. Not enough, but higher than ever before. Out of the 724 women who contested, 78 women have been elected. Should this be big for a country which already had a woman Prime Minister? It shouldn’t be but it is! The elections 2019 are a springboard for the bigger role women will play. How does that resonate with modern business? Every day, across the world, women are breaking barriers to break the glass ceiling, and yet people will ask them – when will you settle, who are you seeing, etc. Look up Jemimah Rodrigues people or simply ask Mr Rahul Gandhi, who has been handled the bastion of his family – why – because he is the son! Patriarchy continues to rock, and it will sink us all! Smart business owners and leaders don’t differentiate. PM Modi version 2 in his maiden speech is showing us the way.

Take a lesson, or teach it to others, politics is business, business is money, money is happiness, and happiness is people!

Cruises, Autthornama

Create Memories to Last a Lifetime with Mediterranean Cruises


Mediterranean cruises offer you a travel experience that you will carry around in your heart, mind, and soul all the time. As you explore and travel through exotic and ancient cities of Greece, France, Italy or Turkey, it is an experience that will stay with you long after you step off the deck. The feel of the cruise’s rocking motion will sway your senses and lull you in your own bed at home. Breathtaking visuals of the sea, islands, and ports will mesmerize your whole being when you feel stressed from work. Mouthwatering varieties of fresh Mediterranean and other cuisines will continue to tantalize your taste buds long after you return home. As I said, the memories will stay afresh.

A Sailing City

A Mediterranean cruise liner is a luxury resort with its own boulevards, a-la-carte restaurants, sun lounges, swimming pools, spas, gymnasiums, concert halls, casinos, live performers, shows and much more. But, before you can indulge in any of these activities, an experienced traveler knows it makes sense to first explore and mesmerize the layout. If you are not inclined to do so, just carry the map of the liner with you. The chances of you getting lost are almost impossible, but if you do manage that, as I did, just turn to the all polite and smiling staff to guide you.

The Hopper Offer

The most interesting aspect of Mediterranean cruises is that you can travel to famous European cities and cover historical sites with the exuberance of a beach holiday. Some cruises meander through tiny islands whisking you away from the modern stresses without compromising on comfort or luxury. As per your travel plans to explore cities or luxuriate on the liner, choose cruise packages that suits your needs. Some packages include wine through the day while others offer staterooms with butlers.

Plan Your Holiday

However, before you finalize your travel plans, keep in mind that only a few liners offer embarkation and disembarkation ports without visas. Most of them are from cities in Europe and Asia and return airfare is not included in package costs. Even excursions packages on most liners can be customized to suit your demands. What are you waiting for, choose the ports, plan the holiday and freeze your Mediterranean cruise liner by booking online! 

A Tip: Most Mediterranean ports and cities have a summer vacation in August, so if you want to avoid heavy crowds, plan your trip in before or after. 

Hunger, not love, conquers all

Hunger, Not Love, Conquers All

Love is the Mount Everest of all emotions. It is revered and respected throughout the world as the emotion to be surrounded by. Love God, love thy neighbour, love your family, love your country, it is everywhere and in everything. And, the most delirious and dangerous of them all is the mantra propagated through boardrooms and classrooms, “love your work to succeed.”  Inspired by an article I came across on Miya Tokumitsu and a conversation in the family on the concept of love as experienced and elevated by the younger generation, led me to pen my thoughts.

We Remain Selfish At Heart

Love is important, undoubtedly, it is the emotion that binds individuals and groups, family and friends – a mother to her child, a father to his family and a human to existence.  Yes, it binds and it limits, but it also uplifts and empower. But for me personally, hunger, not love is the emotion that drives the world to move forward. We have moved forward, from being wild, uncontrolled creatures, to becoming animals who have mastered thoughts and speech. But, we have definitely not mastered our actions or the hunger that drives those actions. The cases of mob attacks are examples of animals, posing as evolutionised beings, but really just animals, unable to control their hunger, of what, I am still trying to grasp.

Hunger & Anger Are the Driving Forces

Have you ever been hungry? Hungry for food? For love? For success? For money? For power? Not getting food on time leads to anger, and we have even invented a term for – Hangry. As a citizen of the world, where poverty and hunger remain supreme, we who miss a meal or two are allowed to be Hangry; but what of the millions for whom it’s a way of life? They rob, steal, kill or are led into the world of slavery by criminals or salvation by priests, and we of full bellies, call them uneducated, uncouth and unrefined. A section of our society is born hangry – their hunger is gut-wrenching that starts from their gut and extends to the guts of their parents, siblings, spouses, kids and all whom they know. They work tirelessly not because they love what they do, but because they need to feed. I quote Ms. Miya Tokumitsu when I say that the CEOs, the glamorous and the worshipped, are successful not only because they worked hard and smart, but because they had at their disposal a population working tirelessly in factories and behind the scenes to feed their hungry that led to the starry successes. Her angst on Steve Jobs saying he was successful because he did what he loves is clearly reflected in what she states is directly demeaning to the hundreds of workers in his factories across Asia who work because they are hungry and not because they love Apple they way Jobs or final consumers do.

It is this hunger that forces each individual to work and allows the strong willed and the really hungry, and here the term drive comes to mind, to give us numerous, inspiring stories where individuals have defied their hunger circumstances to reach the skies where full stomachs reign.   These stories bring tears to our eyes and hope to our hearts but are merely reduced to textbooks and whatsapp messages to be forwarded to all. But then what? We remain hungry. We are born hungry. We never give up on hunger. Success, money and power become the hunger drives or the hunger games that continue to hound. Love too! We are taught the importance of love and each X, Y, Z generation revels in the freedom to love and choose whom to love. Romantic stories thrive on each youthful generation that challenges parents and society. Young and old alike believe love will let us survive, but look at ratio of divorce, suicides or depression to know that love never survives the hardships faced by hunger of the soul, belly, mind or money.

I reiterate,  hunger, not love, is what conquers all. Don’t believe me. Then answer this simple explanation – why are we easily influenced by hunger as it resides in our bodies, dominating our actions but let love slide, screaming at your spouses, taking our families for granted or asking our friends to understand shortage of time and patience. Can you do the same to hunger? Can you sleep hungry, physical or otherwise? Imagine trying to sleep while you know that painting is unfinished, the task your boss asked you to do is lagging or your competitor offered a better deal to your customers?

Hunger Is A Better Driver Than Love

Love lets you sleep, but hunger encourages, nay ensures, your survival. The best achievements of life, the most precious moments, the success we achieve, all through our life, love is the emotion that resounds on our screen and soul and falsely given the credit but it should be hunger. For a businessman, it is the hunger of money, for a politician it is the hunger of chair, for the actor, adulation is the hunger, for the thief, the heist, for the student, an A+ grade, for the mother, food for her child and so on and so forth. For the author in me, it is the hunger of stringing words together perfectly and a piece well-written that hounds my dreams and desires.

What is the hunger that drives you or are you still of the belief that love conquers all?

#10Things for Freelancers

10 Things You Can Do to Get Bulk Work As a Freelance Content Writer

Getting work as a freelance content writer is easy if you follow the below guidelines

One of the major concerns for a content writer is always, “How do I reach out to a company or agency for bulk freelance content writing work?” It seems a daunting task but is actually quite easy. You can be at peace knowing that there is enough work for everybody – all digital marketing agencies and corporate sites today need to outsource their work.

Here, are the steps you should follow to reach out to the best companies and get content writing assignments:

  1. Research the Companies
  • Do a Google search for the best digital marketing companies
  • Check out the sites for quality of language and clients
  • Read reviews to know how the company treats it freelancers – people not getting paid are sure to talk about it
  1. Contact People Who Can Help
  • Use your LinkedIn profile or any social media group to reach out to people working in the company you are interested in
  • Ask to be introduced to the right person
  • If your contact list cannot be of help, go to the next step
  1. Check Contact Information on the Website
  • Go to the contact page on the website, and send in an email to the mentioned email ID.
  • Try a variation of the site addresses, if you do not want to reach out to a salesperson – Check the address – is it .com, .org, .in, Then use hrd or content@companyname.com. You are sure to get a response
  • There is no harm in reaching out to multiple people on the same email
  1. Reach Out to the Concerned Person
  • A simple Hi will suffice if there is no name.
  • Don’t try and guess the gender of the person
  • In the subject line add – looking for an opportunity as a freelance writer
  • Your email should reflect your language skills – it should be error-free
  1. Share Your Details
  • Share a professional summary like your experience, the niche you are comfortable in, the cost, and the amount of work you can complete in a day.
  • Share personal information such as your phone number, the email ID which can be used to reach you, your working hours, etc.
  • Attach a resume, if you have one
  1. Sharing Samples
  • If possible, attach samples of your work in the original email.
  • Use your best samples, which are error-free and will get instant approval.
  • Send samples of the niches you are most comfortable with
  • It is Ok, not to share samples in the first contact mail, and let the person-in-charge ask for them
  1. Follow Up For Work
  • Remember, the response may take 1–3 working days.
  • If you do not get a response, send a reminder. You can send up to 3 reminders.
  • Reach out to a separate ID, if the response is still not received
  1. Get the Conversation Flowing
  • Despite the sharing of details in the first mail, you may be asked to write a sample.
  • I am of the view, why not? However – if they are using the content, you get paid, if not, you go ahead and use it on your website
  • Ask questions – what kind of work will I get, how much will I get, and what are the payment terms.
  • Don’t be afraid to negotiate on the price. But, this is tricky, because some agencies have a limit on the price they can pay, while others are willing to pay a high-cost, but then their quality standards will be stricter.
  1. Sign A Contract
  • Most companies will ask you to sign a contract and NDA.
  • Read the terms and conditions carefully and take a decision
  • Once the contract is signed you will not be allowed to reach out to clients of the company you are working with for a certain period.
  • Once the contract is signed, you are bound by that decision
  1. Commit to Quality
  • Be ready for rejections and revisions if you are not able to meet their standards of quality. You cannot have a ‘bad day at work’ and expect the work to keep coming
  • Companies want work delivered as per their deadlines. They are more than willing to let good writers go if the content is not delivered as per timelines
  • Clients have expectations from their freelance content writer.

In conclusion, reaching out to a client for a bulk order is the easy part. It is also easy to convince them that let you come on board. The actual difficulty arises, when you are required to start delivering content. Most companies will give you a monthly timeline, along with details of their requirements, Fulfilling the requirements in terms of quality and timelines is what will get you bulk work, repeatedly!