Serendipity and After/55

a novel about publishing of a novel

Bloody good writing!
চালিয়ে যান! অতুলনীয় (Carry on! incomparable!) Arin Basu

So I can relax today.

Yesterday I had a long and hard writing session. I was to knock out the most important chapter of the episode, also the concluding one, so I was in a contemplative mode. It was a litmus test for me to get together the drama, history and message all at the same time.

My wife was pacing around me impatiently. “You’re still pegging away? Do you forget we have to see a movie this afternoon?”

It was Dashami — the last day of the Puja. Puja had not made any difference to my writing routine, My clinic being closed these days, I had rather an advantage in writing my installment. Now I can devote my entire morning to writing.

But it was different this morning. I had no problem with words or sentences, but I had this feel that the story was not being fleshed out in the perfect way. So I was getting slow at times and putting nuances where required. But I was finally done : about 1300 words, pretty long for my average output. It seemed like okay. So without any more thought, I clicked the publish button to let the world judge it.

Arin was the first to respond. When he likes something, he knows how to rave about it. He has that rare quality of being fulsome where it’s due. So it was a huge gratification for me getting validated by him immediately after posting.

I was also expecting response from Ramaswamy who was now away in London on a writing residency. But he didn’t come back to me the whole day and a part of the night until my bedtime. Perhaps he was busy with his translation work or pining for his dear wife who he had not seen since long.

But an interesting thing happened. Someone from India (Is he a doctor?) mentioned me in a tweet. When I replied to his tweet, he wrote that he would like to read more of Serendipity. So I tweeted him where to start and how best to read it. But I had a hunch that he was not much of a literary reader and his enthusiasm would peter out soon.


I don’t see movies that many, but when I do, it must be some serious film. The film we were going to see had already got bad press and social media. A friend’s foreign-returned engineer son, had rapped it on his Facebook timeline and requested his friends not to waste their time watching this film. His friends, in their comments, thanked him for the alert.

But I began to like the film from the very start. It was an amazing adaptation of a Shakespearean work (actually two works) intended for Bengali audience of these times. In this version, the location has been rightly set at Kidderpore area. And the concept of the syndicate is just not apt and topical, it sings in its ramification.

What I particularly liked about the storyline was its introduction of politics in the way we know about it in West Bengal or India, for that matter. The script is tight and rich with intelligent dialogues and some slang. There is some sex scenes, but they are innocuous and not even titillating. Do these things work any more for the audience in these times?

“Did you like it?” my wife asked me on our way back home.

“It’s not a great movie, but it’s quite good. We can expect a great movie from this guy in the future.”

“It’s much better than Gangster.”

“Oh, don’t compare. This one comes from an artist, and that from a copycat.”


Arin Basu, Subho Bijaya to you, your wife and daughter. Thanks for your appreciation.