1. Have an Interesting Snippet to Share : Click Here
    Dismiss Notice
  2. What can you teach someone online? Tell us here!
    Dismiss Notice
  3. If someone taught you via skype, what would you want to learn? Tell us here!
    Dismiss Notice

Varalotti's Whirlwind Project! Happy New Year 2009!

Discussion in 'Wednesdays with Varalotti' started by varalotti, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    Varalotti's Whirlwind Project

    You might have forgotten about the “whirlwind” project which delayed my replying to your fb for LA 5 and which delayed my posting LA 6. But I can never forget your kind wishes and your statements of love like “We understand, Varalotti.”

    And some statements which made me cry “Why should you apologize?” “There is no need for you to tell. We will still understand.”

    Like the pet child of the house standing before his parents, siblings, aunts, uncles and grand parents I am now standing before you to tell what the project was all about and what were my learning experiences therefrom.

    It was a busy Wednesday forenoon exactly three weeks before. I had completed an arduous professional assignment and before I took up another, was enjoying my well-earned ten-minutes inter-assignment break.

    I used that time to read our Kamla’s reply in Love All and was wondering how could this lady bring out so much love even while passing a critical comment.

    My mobile rang. My publisher was on the line. (Think of Mr.Sethuramalingam of ALS – well that’s my publisher for you.)

    “Varalotti sir, can someone write a 200 page-book in ten days?”

    “Depends on.. who is that someone and what that book is all about.”

    “Ok, I’ll give a few more clues. That someone is you. And the book is about the President-Elect of the US, Barack Obama.”

    A few minutes of deafening silence.

    “Sridhar sir… Sridhar sir.. Varalotti Sir.. are you still on the line?”

    “I am, but, that’s too much for me. First I am not a professional author. Second I know next to nothing about Obama. Third, there are way too many books on that man.”

    “It does not matter whether you are a professional or an amateur. As far as I am concerned you are a good writer. This is for your second statement: I’ll buy all the books on Obama that’s available in the Chennai market and courier them to you.

    "And the third, the most important, yes there are at least four books on Obama in Tamil. But none of them are good enough for me. I want you to write Obama’s biography in your style. “

    “But then.. sir… 10 days.. 200 pages… Obama.. book. … Tamil… how…..”

    “I am asking Marimuthu to courier the books to you. You will get them tomorrow. Have a glance at those books and then call me. We’ll talk. Have a great day.”

    The line went dead.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
    Loading...

  2. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    I had a tax-hearing with the Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax. And as usual there were a million chores requiring my attention.

    I had just opened a Microsoft Word Document entitled Love All 6 which was perfectly blank.

    The books came promptly the next day – three in English and two in Tamil. My God! Five books! About 2000 printed pages! How can I ever complete reading them all in 10 days let alone write a book!

    I called my publisher later in the day during my lunch break. I had planned to communicate a pleasant “NO.”

    But hearing his enthusiastic voice suddenly something changed in me and instead of bellowing a NO I mumbled a meek YES. And then he said that two or three days of delay could be managed by accelerating the other processes in the making of a book. He wished me good luck and disconnected.

    I completed reading one of the English books in two days. It had lots of information but emotionally speaking it was as bare as the dial tone. Then I switched over to one of the Tamil books. Not good. Too much of hero worship and too little facts.

    Then there was a book written by Obama himself – The Audacity of Hope. More than two inches thick. Did not want to touch it as the most unreliable source of information concerning a man is his own self. (Dialogue courtesy : A LOVE STORY).

    Finally I opened the book From Promise To Power written by David Mendell. Well researched, neatly documented and above all it read like a Sheldon’s novel.

    I spent the next three days devouring the book line by line taking elaborate notes in an outdated diary. But the problem with the book was that it stopped with Obama announcing his participation in the 2008 Presidential race.

    For all the key events in his life thereafter I had to rely on the Net which was the second greatest friend in the whole project.

    The next step was to plan the chapters. I was not interested in presenting the routine biographical sketch. I decided to touch only upon those events which had an “emotional bearing” and which had a “human interest” story in it. I chose 61 such “emotional points” in Obamas life and then arranged them in the chronological order.

    Then I started writing them at about ten to twelve chapters a day completing the last chapter on 22<sup>nd</sup> December 2008.

    You wrote a book, agreed. But what were your learning experiences? – I can understand your question. The second most important learning experience was the subject matter itself – Obama’s life.

    Imagine a child whose father leaves him forever when he is just two. The child is brought up by his mother who then remarries a man from a different country. The child had to live in a foreign country and eat grasshoppers, snakes and dogs thanks to his stepfather. And the child is continuously stung by racial insults by his peers, teachers and elders.

    A lot of bitterness would have been built in the child’s system. And the child is sure to become a social recluse or a criminal. What if the child is brimming with love, willing to serve his fellow African-Americans foregoing his opportunity to make millions as a lawyer who studied at Harvard. That is Barack Obama for you.

    The third most important learning experience was that the deadline-induced adrenalin is best source of inspiration for a writer, or for that matter any artist.

    As I was racing against time I had chosen humorous titles for the chapter headings and even made my first editor (read my wife) laugh at a few of them. And had also chosen the title of the book in the process.

    Hitherto Marimuthu has been choosing all my book-titles rejecting all the titles suggested by me. This time even he told me that I had come up with a good one.

    My title was Obama: Black Gold in White House (
    ஒபாமா வெள்ளை மாளிகையில் ஒரு கருப்புத் தங்கம்)

    Within limits stress is beneficial for all. I’d rather prefer a few butterflies in my stomach than being perfectly relaxed when I want to do something big.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  3. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    If you have been reading this post carefully till now you will have two questions in your mind.

    “Varalotti you said that the second greatest friend in the whole project was the Internet. So what or who was the first?

    “Varalotti you said that the second most important learning experience was the subject matter itself. So what was the first?”

    You are never going to believe this ladies. The answers to both the questions are the same. My wife, Indhu.

    Here I was working only to garner all the glory. But why should she suffer? Ever since the project started we never went out. No eating out, no going out, no bike or car rides, nothing.

    And then added to all that she had the onerous responsibility of being my editor. My working hours were quite erratic. I would give her the printed chapters, sometimes four or five at a time telling her in not so sweet words,

    “Take your own time but finish them in two hours. Next set will be ready by then.”

    Many days she would be up till Eleven or half-past going through all my writings. I have the peculiar ability of making a lot of spelling mistakes in Tamil. Indhu knows the pattern and would fix them all up in no time. At that time my laptop was in our bedroom and even when Indhu was asleep the tube lights would be on. She never even complained once.

    Varalotti could be accused of so many things. But surely not of ingratitude.

    I had completed the whole book running into roughly 171 A4 size pages (will be about 208 pages in normal dummy size book paper) at 2 AM on 22<sup>nd</sup> December 2008. Thanks to technology I could directly mail the script to the person who was about to do the DTP work.

    Indhu’s birthday was on the next day, 23<sup>rd</sup> December. Apart from the wishes and the usual gift I wanted to give something special to her this time, for the understanding, for the work and above all for the unconditional love.

    I had a flash. I called my publisher.

    “Sir, as promised I delivered the 200-page-book on time. Now it’s your turn to do something for me.”

    “Whatever it is, consider it done. Do you want an advance Varalotti sir?”

    “No I want a small change … a small addition to the script.”

    “The DTP work has already started. But never mind. You mail the changes to me. I will see to it that it is added.”

    “Thanks a ton.”

    I had asked him to add one more page in the book. To come right after the title page. Yes, you guessed it right, it’s a dedication page.
    It now reads as follows:
    சமர்ப்பணம்

    நான் அவளுடன் இருக்கும் நேரத்தை மொத்தமாகக் களவாடித்தான் எழுதிக் கொண்டிருக்கிறேன் என்று தெரிந்தும், அகழ்வாரைத் தாங்கும் நிலம் போல என்னைத் தாங்கி, என் சின்னத்தனங்களைப் பொறுத்துக் கொண்டு, எனது கிறுக்கல்களைப் படித்து, பிழைதிருத்தி, எனக்காகக் கண்விழித்து, என் தேவைகளைப் பூர்த்தி செய்யும் தேவதையாய், தோள் கொடுக்கும் தோழியாய், கனிந்த மனம் கொண்ட காதலியாய் என்னை அணைத்து அரவணைத்து வாழ வைத்துக் கொண்டிருக்கும் என் அருமை மனைவி இந்துவிற்கு
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  4. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    This book will be on sale from January 8 onwards when the annual BAPASI Book Fair opens in Chennai. Those of you who live in Chennai, if you visit the fair, please ask for Kavitha Publications stall and buy the book. It should cost around Rs.100/-.

    This year you will have an additional advantage - of meeting one of the characters of A LOVE STORY – Mr. Marimuthu. Yes he told me that he will be manning the stall on all the days.

    If you see him tell him that you are from Indusladies and that Varalotti has created a character in your name and we all love that character. What greater pleasure is there in this world than making a good man happy?

    As I look back on the year that is slowly slipping away I remember your love, your confidence in me and your greatest support but for which I could not have dreamt of writing so much in so short a time.

    I look forward to receive the same kind of love in 2009 and all the years to follow. And will also try my best to reciprocate your love to extent it is possible by a mofussil accountant and a part time writer.

    May our Madurai Queen bless you all and may you have a great, happy and a prosperous New Year.

    Love,
    sridhar

     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  5. AbhiSing

    AbhiSing Gold IL'ite

    Messages:
    2,754
    Likes Received:
    221
    Trophy Points:
    153
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Sridhar Sir

    Happy New Year to you and your loved ones!

    Accept my heartiest congratulations and I wish you to complete many more such projects in this year...whirlwindy or breezy.

    You and Indhu mam are made for each other and it shows in the love you shower on each other. I have never read such a loving dedication.:2thumbsup:

    And thanks for sharing it with us, in this 2009!

    Warmest Regards
    Vijee
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  6. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    Dear Vijee,
    Thanks for the kind wishes. And I wish you and yours a very happy and a prosperous new year.

    Oh, you are ahead of us in time. You are now in 2009 while we are still in 2008. The time now is 10 25 here. We have an hour and 35 minutes to go for the birth of the new year.

    Thanks for the kind words you have about my projects and about me and Indhu.

    love,
    sridhar
     
  7. indhusri

    indhusri Bronze IL'ite

    Messages:
    646
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Gender:
    Female
    அன்புள்ள ஸ்ரீதரா ,
    ராமருக்கு உதவிய அணில்போல் உங்கள் புத்தகம் உருவானதில் ஒரு சிறுபங்கை ( சிறு பணியை ) எனக்கு அளித்து என்னைப் பெருமைப்படுத்தியதற்கு நன்றி ! நூலில் என்பெயரும் (புகழும்) இடம்பெறச் செய்தீர்கள் என்று அறிந்து இன்ப அதிர்ச்சி ! என் பிறந்த நாளைக்கு நீங்கள் சமர்ப்பித்த இந்தப் பரிசை என் வாழ்நாள் முழுதும் மறக்க இயலாது !:bowdown
    என் சிறு உதவியைத் தியாகம் என்று சொல்லி 'தியாகம் ' என்ற சொல்லின் மதிப்பையே குறைத்துவிடாதீர்கள் !
    ஒபாமாவின் சரிதையைச் சுவைபட நீங்கள் எழுதியவிதத்தை (பிழைதிருத்தல் வேலை என்பதையும் மறந்து !) மிகமிக ரசித்தேன் ! நகைச்சுவையோடு ஜனரஞ்சகமாகப் படைத்துள்ளீர்கள் ! என் மனமார்ந்த பாராட்டுக்கள் !
    தங்கள் முதல் விசிறி ,
    இந்து.
     
  8. sundarusha

    sundarusha Gold IL'ite

    Messages:
    3,427
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    160
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Sridhar

    Happy New Year wishes to you, Indhu and your family.

    Hearty congratulations on the whirlwind project.

    It is an apt dedication to Indhu and a present that is carved in her memory forever.

    May Goddess Meenakshi shower you success with many more projects.
     
  9. iyerviji

    iyerviji IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    33,280
    Likes Received:
    26,317
    Trophy Points:
    640
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Sridhar

    Congratulations on the Whirlwind project. Good wishes to complete many more projects.

    with love and blessings
    viji
     
  10. Sriniketan

    Sriniketan IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    12,521
    Likes Received:
    1,433
    Trophy Points:
    445
    Gender:
    Female
    Sridhar,
    So now... Obama in your own words.:thumbsup
    Nice to see that you had added a dedication page to her...for all the help Indhu rendered you...
    Happy New year to you, Indhu, Preethi, and your parents..

    sriniketan
     

Share This Page