4 Feb 2013

An Absurd Romance

Kids, the summer of 2012 was a very special time. The world was still an apocalyptic wasteland, and I was convinced life as we knew it was really just one big Zuckerberg simulation. While all of humanity clamoured for Mayan interventions and the Silicon Valley supply line appeared to have finally run out of minimalist Messiahs, your father was one of the few men to look reality in the eye and accept things as they were: we were all well and truly fucked. Like I say, it was a magical time.

Your father was in his prime, still compulsively spewing vitriol like any self-respecting writer should, still rocking his Chuck Taylors on weekends. Unfortunately, in the summer of 2012, your father wasn't a self-respecting writer. Not even a self-loathing one, which is the commoner kind. He was a professional, a clean shirt. Your father still harboured dreams of getting back into the literary game of course; back because he had already written his first novel, six years ago- it was a crusty old thing, languishing unread, amputated and hidden away in pieces in godforsaken corners of his inbox.

There were 3 Chucks in your father's life: Norris, and the Taylor twins.
Your father was biding his time, hoping- and believing- that his flirtation with corporate life was an infatuation, that he would roll up his sleeves and bin the flashy suits and ditch the rat race for the solemn static of uninspired graphite touching paper, for the desperate longing of lonely symphonies typed out on disinterested keyboards. And then one excessively inebriated night at Clarke Quay in Singapore, he snapped. Ever the Grand Gesture merchant, he threw his smartphone over the serendipitously named Read Bridge, left his boss a voicemail of questionable propriety and embraced the Dream.

Much as this little note sounds like a big ol' circle-jerk, I do have actual news to deliver, unlike the douchebag from the sitcom I'm parodying for whatever reason. A lot has happened since that stormy night on Clarke Quay. I've spent the last few months bumming around India, not because I wanted to find myself but because the Motherland is the one place that does not place immigration restrictions on my brown ass. I made new friends, got into fights, found a publisher for my novel, blogged and tweeted and facebooked like a crazy person, moved to Bombay, fell in love

But tonight, I am racked with all sorts of anxiety because tomorrow I finally join the ranks of  'published writers'. One of my short stories 'An Absurd Romance' has been published by the good folks at Scholastic Nova in their anthology 'Music of the Stars and Other Love Stories' which releases tomorrow at the annual New Delhi World Book Fair 2013 in New Delhi. Starting tomorrow, I can no longer hide in the shade of euphemisms; my work will be available to all to read and judge and love or loathe.

It's liberating and intimidating in equal measure, and the future being so unpredictable, I'm now slowly making my peace with the dawning realization that it's okay to be scared when you're going after something you love. I hope I don't, in the process, leave you a legacy of failure and not-good-enough; I hope tomorrow heralds the start of something magical, something special, like the Summer of 2012. But if that doesn't happen, if the wannabe-writer shtick blows up in my face, I'd like for you to know that it's been one hell of a ride.

'Music of the Stars and other Love Stories', Scholastic India (2013) 



29 comments:

Jerly said...

COngrats! I was thinking of writing short stories for some time. It just isnt thata easy I know. SO GREAT GOING THERE and GOOD LUCK

icyHighs said...

Thanks Jerly. That's a very unusual name. :)

Angie said...

Congratulations! No matter how much we love the craft, and no matter how often we tell ourselves that we do it for the love of it, regardless of the approval of others, there is something so damned satisfying about being published. :) Great news!

icyHighs said...

Hey Angie, thanks for commenting. True story!

Anisha Vasudevan said...

Hey Congrats on getting published! That's wonderful news :)

P.S- I liked the way you started the post speaking like that Ted chap in HIMYM. I had his voice in my head while I read the first few lines!!

Susan Kane said...

Huzzahs all around! Love the story leading up to your announcement. Now to read the story...

Sarge said...

ICY,
FANTASTIC! Icy. I knew that you had the talent to get published!
Alas, the only thing stopping you was YOU! So, young man; I recommend that you do a check up from the neck up and get your ass focused.You are a published author - Know that.
Keep doing short stories to pay for the food and beer and start working on a book.

Bests,

Sarge

austere said...

Congratulations, young man. I am so very proud of you. I will buy your book as well as this collection, and I must tell you I will buy a copy of the New Yorker with your fiction in it one day even if it costs 54 INR to a dollar. Go, boss, go!

Ghadeer said...

That is AMAZING news! Congratulations! :) [I love the HIMYM-style too]

thebalanceline said...

Fantastic! What a wonderful thing you've accomplished. High-five!

Revacious said...

Awesome, Icy! That's 105 kinds of awesome!!
Go after what you love, dude: with a grenade or a machine gun if needed! And let us know how scary it was, that's awesome too :)

icyHighs said...

Hey thanks you guys, much appreciated. :)

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Yes, your insights on "bacne" are incredible.

Also, you're amazing and so is everything you write. I'm a BIG fan. :)

icyHighs said...

"bacne". LMAO!
And thank you, that's very kind. :)

unikorna said...

wow such great news...congratsssss I wish you and "An absurd romance" a hugeeeeeeeee luck int he publishing world :).

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icyHighs said...

Thanks Unikorna!

For those who are interested, I've now linked the book title to Scholastic's page where the book is available to buy online: http://www.scholastic.co.in/index.php/music-of-the-stars-and-other-love-stories.html?___SID=U

It's got some great stories from 10 other writers, if you're into YA. Happy reading!

Talitha said...

I knew it I knew it!
I've been stalking you for a bit and found that there's a novel in the offing too!
Now all that remains is for me to get hold of it somehow...and I will.Soon.:)
Till then,keep going!:)

icyHighs said...

Thanks Talitha. Hope you like it. :)

Saakshi Singh said...

Great news!
Congratulations! :)
Keep going,and keep up the good work! :D

Jenny Woolf said...

Brilliant! well done. This is great news. There is something utterly wonderful in having other people endorse your writing by actually publishing it!

Talitha said...

Heya Tharun!
I've tagged you for this Liebster award thingy,Just go and have a look at it will ya?
Link: http://thethinkeress.blogspot.in/2013/02/welcome-to-1st-occasional-blog-awards_14.html

austere said...

book ordered.

icyHighs said...

Hi Sakshi and Jenny, thanks very much.

Hey Talitha, that's quite an honour, will pop over to your blog tonight. Thank you.

Austere, you awesomesauce human being! I really hope you like it.

red dirt girl said...

That's the way to do it, Icy. Big Love from me.

red
xxx

icyHighs said...

I feel ya Red. Thank you!

austere said...

Loved your story. Unusual treatment, much liked that Q&A shorthand style, I think you take the reader to that molten, liquid fire place-- just amazing.
MORE!

icyHighs said...

Austere, that's so nice of you to say! Thank you for reading (you're the first person I don't personally know to have read it and commented, so yay!), and glad you enjoyed it. :)