Like most of the virgoans this nachiz had the gumaan of being a writer right from the days he used to wet nappies.Jokes apart, I have been privileged to get the encouragement from my parents as well teachers to jot down the mental garbage. It began with writing poetries (in Hindi mostly) & essays. Fortunately, some of them even made it to the school journal 'Surabhi' of Raman Higher Secondary School, Bhopal and College journal 'Shilpi' of Government Engineering college, Rewa (perhaps also owing to the fact that I happened to be the 'student editor' of both).
Frankly, writing for newspapers became a passion for me, be it initially to the 'Letter to the editors' of M.P.Chronicle and Navabharat or later, articles on diverse topics. Besides, as I was interested in drawing & that kind of stuff, I used to prepare those pocket quizzes for the 'children pages', an interesting mix of drawing, handwritten questions and collage of cuttings - all arranged with my kalakari. Fun part began when I started getting paid for my writing by Naidunia and Dainik Bhaskar. But the real solace always has been - seeing my article in print, especially when it made it to the 'Sunday edition cover story'; one way atleast, to land at those tempting glossy pages.
Many articles/stories were also written during my college days in Dainik Jagran and Deshbandhu. While being in college I was able to do what my heart always wanted to do - have my own publication. This effort found support from one of my great friend and a pal from the days of KGs - ShreeKumar who handled the layout and decoration part. So was born 'The Pioneer', indeed a ground breaking wall-magazine, totally handwritten and hand-decorated on the ubiquitous engineering drawing sheets. The attempt was appreciated. On the whole it was a heart warming experience and perhaps worth the pains we took, for instance in luring our local book-wallahs to 'sponsor' the quizzes/poetry competitions organized in the auspices wall-magazine. But as they say all good things culminate prematurely, 'The Pioneer' also survived for too little a span. Reason? It was consuming too much of our time. I still have those 7-8 copies of the magazine with me, fondly preserved, to inspire me, I don't know.
Why didn't I go for a full-time career of Journalism (so many of my friends and well-wishers actually thought I was to become another Kuldip Nayyar). Well, face it- journalism does not pay. And after finishing my engineering both my parents and well-wishers would have been traumatized to see enter the career of newspaper writing. Not many of my friends know that I actually worked with Naidunia - features department for 3-weeks. Working with my mentor-Vivek 'Mridul' Sawarikar was enlightening. I remember paper's editor Madan Mohan Joshiji telling me - "..to travel in the first-class coach of Journalism you have to start your journey hanging on the door-handle, standing at the footboard of the General coach." He offered me a salary of Rs.500 pm. I was bewildered; all my dreams were shattered. It only seemed too prudent for me to quit. So I claimed the reimbursement of all the articles that I had written, translated and edited during those 3 weeks. Want to know how much I got? Rs.1600.
Since then writing was all freelance and when the turmoil of job started taking the toll, writing was put on a backburner. Such was the separation, that for the last 2 years I did not write a single article. Thankfully, the flame was rekindled in my current spell and I hope to persist. Of course the topics now have shifted from socio-political ones to IT & Internet. Whatever the topic, I try hard not to get too serious and spare no effort to add a gleam of humor.
What next? I plan to put my scanned versions of my published articles on the web. But that obviously will take quit lot of time. I also plan to write for the web; not just limited to content-writing. Till then bear with me. And do write to me your comments, I will appreciate them immensely.