top

...now browsing by tag

 
 

5 Great Romance Authors of our Generation

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018

“Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book.” Though an anonymous quote, the words couldn’t be truer and more applicable to real life. Books have always been the gateway to new worlds, and romance novels, as a genre, can transport you to a world where you can rest easy that everything will turn out right with the world. They introduce you to women you admire, and men you connect with, and often have a knack for tapping into human emotions in a way that you connect, no matter what background you come from.

So, to acknowledge the wonder and magic that romance novels bring to our lives, here’s a list of 5 authors from our generation, who are at the top of their game.

 

1. Nora Roberts

The queen of the best-seller list, Nora Roberts can easily be called the romance writer for this generation. With over 200 books to her credit, she is amazing at churning out masterpiece after masterpiece, with well-rounded characters, classic romance, and an ability to make you read well into the night. She also writes a separate thriller-romance series under the pseudonym J.D.Robb, who is just as popular and successful.

Image source - Goodreads

Image source – Goodreads

 

2. Debbie Macomber

Debbie clearly belongs on this list, with over 200 million copies of her books sold worldwide. With beautiful words, scenic descriptions you can almost visualize, and lovers so clearly meant to be together, you get frustrated with them for not seeing it as clearly as you, she lures you in and keeps you hooked right to the last page.

Image source - Simon & Schuster

Image source – Simon & Schuster

 

3. Nicholas Sparks

The odd man out, clearly, being one of the few men to be able to breakthrough in a genre considered by many to be a woman’s forte, Nicholas certainly has a special ‘Spark’ in his work. His books are so popular that many have gone on to be become successful feature length films, including The Last Song, Safe Haven, A Walk to Remember, and the most memorable of them all, The Notebook.

Image source - Google

Image source – Google

 

4. Jayne Ann Krentz

Another author who has written many best-selling books not only in her own name, but also in her pseudonym Amanda Quick. Another weird quirk of hers? She has a host of other pseudonyms under which many novels and series have been written, including Amanda Glass, Jayne Castle, Jayne Taylor, as well as Stephanie James. We’re exhausted just reading the names.

Image source - Twitter

Image source – Twitter

 

5. Sarah MacLean

We’re happy to include her name primarily because she has achieved so much at such a young age. One of the youngest authors to reach such accolades, and having won numerous awards, especially in the romance genre, Sarah is one to look out for.

Image source - Goodreads

Image source – Goodreads

 

Though it’s obvious that we can’t possibly cover each and every romance author out there, these are five great options to get you started. And if you want to add some of your favorites, send us a mail and we’ll make a second list. You can also suggest different genres that you’d like us to write about too. Till next time, cheerio!

Famous Novels Penned in about a Month

Thursday, June 8th, 2017

Seasoned authors will often tell you that starting work on a novel is easy. What’s difficult is finishing it. And that’s because, as you plough your way through your story, creating and eliminating characters and weaving tales of delight and dread, self-doubt, laziness, boredom and a host of other evils destroy your motivation and attention levels. That’s why, instead of spending decades on their novels, some smart authors chose to give themselves just a month to finish their book. Did this mean that they compromised on the quality of the work? Not at all! In fact, their novels have enjoyed a cult status, becoming the most read works of our times. Here are some novels that were penned in little over a month.

On The Road – Jack Kerouac

Although Jack Kerouac spent many years travelling through America, all the while noting down his memorable experiences, he took just three weeks to compile his notes and feelings into this long, adventurous read! He wrote the draft of the book on a 120 foot long piece of teletype paper which he created by sticking numerous sheets together.

on the road

A Study in Scarlet – Arthur Conan Doyle

This book is special because it introduced our favourite detective to us for the first time – the svelte, suave and shrewd Sherlock Holmes. Mr. Doyle, however, took just three weeks to create this fine piece of fiction, problem, solution and all!

The Boy in the Stripped Pyjamas – John Boyne

While telling this story of a young Jewish boy living through the Holocaust, the Irish novelist says that he was so absorbed in his tale that he kept writing without a break for two and half days, and finished the novel! He didn’t even stop to eat or sleep!

A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

This book gave birth to one of the most famous villains of our time – Scrooge. Yes, that grumpy, grouchy, miserly man who cared for nothing but money. The story of his transformation is heartening and loved by youngsters and adults alike. However, it didn’t take Dickens long to weave this cautionary tale, for he finished the book in just six weeks!

christmas

A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess

This novel was adapted into a film by the same name. Directed by Stanley Kubrick, it went on to become a critically acclaimed movie, especially loved by the freethinkers of our world. But, the author never imagined the level of success and fame his book would enjoy. In fact, he admits that he wrote the book in just three weeks and did it only because he needed the money!

Well, this just goes to show that the time taken to finish a work has very little impact on its quality. You don’t have to cook up a story that will take decades to write. Even a simple, relatable plot is enough to garner attention. So, what are you waiting for? Get to work on that idea you’ve been wanting to write about immediately!

Looking for a quiet, calm place to write? Head to QTube Café, one of the most unique cafes in Mumbai. Not only can you sit there for hours for free, you get to guzzle on cups of coffee, which are also handed out for free!

5 Empowering Reads For Women

Thursday, March 9th, 2017

What we read undoubtedly has a profound effect on our thoughts. So, if you want better thoughts, it’s time to start reading better books. Ladies, here are a few books that not only make for well-written, gripping reads, but are also immensely empowering in tone and content. They deal with different aspects of womanhood and intelligently point out the overt and covert ways in which patriarchal societies try to undermine and discriminate against the “weaker sex.” Read these books to become more aware of the challenges that confront women and for some kickass tips on how to fight against the obstacles and live an independent, fulfilling life.

wink books

 

Image courtesy: Wink Books

The Best of Everything – Rona Jaffe

If you loved Sex and the City, you’ll love this book too. The book has a group of 20-something women as its protagonists and these optimistic, ambitious young adults are trying to advance their careers and explore their sexual desires in a world that’s run by men. Read this book to feel understood, accepted and loved.

Bad Feminist – Roxane Gay

The book presents a bunch of well-written essays that articulate Roxane’s thoughts on some very complex issues related to feminism, race and class. The text is humorous but insightful, moving but not preachy. Read this book to understand why it’s better to be a “bad feminist than no feminist at all.”

Wasted – Marya Hornbacher

We’re all worried about our weights and are guilty of calorie counting and binge dieting. Marya presents her own struggle with two eating disorders – anorexia and bulimia. Her memoir is gripping, honest and humorous.

Bossypants – Tina Fey

Tina Fey is one of the most popular female comedians of our time. We’ve loved her work on Saturday Night Live and now she has a book that discusses her experience working for this brilliant show and what her journey as a female comedian has been like. The book is humorous and insightful and helps you get to know this wonderful performer better.

The Gutsy Girl (Escapades for your Life of Epic Adventure) – Caroline Paul

This is for all the ladies who love an adrenaline rush. By revealing her own adventures, the author motivates women to take on adventurous activities too. Why should women think that ‘risky’ hobbies and careers like mountain climbing or fire-fighting is not for them? After you read this book, you’ll want to explore both these activities and more!

Happy reading, ladies!

Top QTube Café Events this February

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017

QTube Café is a thriving ‘performance café’ that hosts lots of fun events every week. Here are some of the coolest events happening at the café this Feb. Save the dates of the ones you’d like to attend.

For theatre buffs:

QTube Café’s ‘Drama Alert!’ Fridays see young, talented actors and playwrights put up new and interesting plays. The best part is that you don’t need to purchase a ticket to watch any of these plays! Plus, you get free coffee!

Time: 6 – 8 pm

Dates: 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th Feb

DSC_1442

For poetry enthusiasts:

MaxMeet Social and The Poetry Club Mumbai are organizing events at the café this month. Attend these events if you’d like to read out your compositions, discuss poetry or socialize with other poets.

MaxMeet Social: Poetry Tuesday 65 – Pop Culture Reference!

Date: 7th Feb

Time: 7 – 9 pm

The Poetry Club Mumbai: Poetry Reading Session

Date: 19th Feb

Time: 4 – 7 pm

DSC_0212

For music lovers:

Is your whistle feeble, inaudible and quite pointless? Attend this whistling workshop to up your skills! It’s being organized by the Indian’s Whistlers Association, don’t miss it!

Date: 12th Feb

Time: 5 – 7 pm

IWA

For dance devotees:

Kuchipudi workshop at the café. Attend this interesting workshop to know more about this traditional dance form.

Date: 11th Feb

Time: 6 – 7.30 pm

k7

6 Famous Cafes Literature Lovers Must Visit

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

Gone are the days when we had to sit cramped up, and quite uncomfortably, on those bare long benches of roadside tea stalls, to sip a piping hot cup of chai or coffee. Although we still enjoy this as a nostalgic treat now and then, most of us prefer savoring our caffeinated delights seated on plush chairs inside hip ‘cafes,’ as we now like to call them. And why not, for aren’t we all partial towards creature comforts? The luxurious ambiance is relaxing, the cordial, almost friendly service uplifts our mood and the whispered conversation of gentility allows us to immerse ourselves in serious pursuits like work or reading. This is why many artists too enjoyed biding their time at cafes. In fact, they made use of these sanctums to pen down lines for their now famous works! Here are a list of such cafes that, along with serving up delicious beverages, also ended up serving us with some delightful literary offerings!

The Literary Café, St. Petersburg

This Café was frequented by the writer who gave us gems like Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov – Fyodor Dostoyevsky, and the Great Russian poet Alexander Pushkin. In fact, Pushkin is rumoured to have taken his last meal here, before dying in a duel.

Today, to honour Pushkin’s memory, the café has erected a bust of him and has included his favourite dishes in the cafes menu!

literary cafe

The Elephant House, Edinburgh

This is a very intriguing cafe for Harry Potter book lovers because it is in here that celebrated author J.K. Rowling sat thinking up ideas for and writing the Harry Potter book series. It is said that the Edinburgh Castle can be seen from a backroom in this café, which is where Rowling sat, and perhaps, where she drew much inspiration for her magical school – Hogwarts!

the metropolist

Antico Caffe Greco, Rome

This café seems to have been a popular hangout among those in the poetry circle. The café played host to notable Romantic poets Byron, Shelley and Keats and the master of the fairy tale, Hans Christian Anderson.

antico-caffe-greco-6

La Rotonde, Paris

The elegant Parisian café, which is today a full-fledged restaurant, was a frequent hangout of Scott Fitzgerald. Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway and T.S. Elliot too were regulars here! Even today, many artists and film directors frequent the café to work, socialize and do business.

la-rotonde-14

Pedrocchi Café, Italy

This ultra-stylish café has always been the preferred place for artist and writer meets. Lord Byron and French writer Stendhal are among the famous this café boasts of having hosted.

pedrocchi

From this article, one can easily see that cafés are not only the best hangout places, but they’re also great places for getting work done. If you’re looking for a welcoming café to sit and finish penning some of your thoughts, we suggest you head to the sixth cafe on  our list, which is QTube Café, a wonderful café on S.V. Road that provides free coffee, Wi-Fi and a host of other things to its patrons. Know more about the café here: One of the Most Unique Cafes in Mumbai

QTube Cafe, Bandra

 Warm and welcoming, ain’t it?

DSC_1029

 

 

Poetry Puzzle – Can you Guess the Poem?

Friday, October 7th, 2016

We’ve often played games that require us to guess the name of a movie or a song. But, we’ve never tried doing the same when it comes to poems. Why? Because it’s hard; it’s hard to guess the name of a poem just by hearing a few lines from it. The lines might seem familiar, and we could swear we’ve heard them before, but, the name of the poem stubbornly evades us. Isn’t it frustrating to realize you can’t remember the name of a poem you spent days reading and trying to understand? Well, the only way to get better at this game is by quizzing ourselves incessantly and untiringly. Slowly, we’ll surely be able to name at least the few famous ones we’ve read even if our only clue is a couple of lines from one of its verses.

caged-bird-singing

Here are key verses from five well-known poems. How many of these poems can you name? (Answers shared at the end, but no cheating!)

1.

“Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!

Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;

Conspiring with him how to load and bless

With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run”

(Hint: The poem pays tribute to a season in which trees lose their verdant coats!)

2.

“Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight

Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.”

(Hint: The poem urges the reader to put up a tough fight against the universal leveller – death)

3.

“The caged bird sings with a fearful trill

Of things unknown but longed for still

And his tune is heard on the distant hill for

The caged bird sings of freedom.”

(Hint: The realization you reach after reading the poem)

4.

“Exult O shores, and ring O bells!

But I with mournful tread,

Walk the deck my Captain lies,

Fallen cold and dead.”

(Hint: Robbin Williams takes the name of this poem on as a nickname in the movie Dead Poets Society)

5.

“I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness,

starving hysterical naked,

dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking

for an angry fix,

angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly

connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,”

(Hint: ‘Yowl’ works as a good synonym for the title)

 

Answers:

  1. Ode to Autumn – John Keats, 2. Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night – Bob Dylan, 3. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou, 4. O Captain! My Captain! – Walt Whitman, 5. Howl – Allen Ginsberg

5 Songs with Famous Dance Routines

Thursday, September 29th, 2016

Some songs really bring out the dancer in you. When these tracks beckon, you feel compelled to  let go of every ounce of shyness and just go crazy on the dance floor. It helps if the song playing has its own dance routine. When that happens, you feel in control since you don’t have to rack your brains to come up with steps that make you look cool, and not like you’re having a minor stroke. That’s probably why Village People’s Y.M.C.A is so popular and so is the Nae Nae song by Silento. Here are 5 other such popular tracks that we’ve loved all these years. Read on to discover some cool trivia behind these songs. Also, we’ve added some really cool dance videos to help you learn some new moves. Enjoy!

vogue

Macarena

This Spanish dance hit became a staple at every celebration. The moves are so simple, it’s almost like performing a couple of aerobic dance steps. Also, it looks best when performed in a group, making it the perfect move for bashful dancers. One cannot imagine doing the Macarena any other way but with these trademark steps!

Forgotten how to do the Macarena? Here’s a short video to remind you.

The Twist – Chubby Checkers

This dance move is a favourite with dancers and non-dancers alike, because it’s one of the easiest moves to pull off. All you need to do is twist, swivel your hips in time with the music. If thinking of it as a dance move makes you want to distance yourself from it, you can think of it as a move to put out a rather stubborn cigarette, or something you do when you’re trying to dry your back using a towel. The Twist was first performed by Hank Ballard, an RnB singer who came up with the song ‘The Twist,’ after seeing people enjoy this 60s dance move. However, it took a Chubby Checker version to really propel this song and dance move to fame.

Here are some of the best twists in the history of twisting. Watch and learn.

Walk Like an Egyptian – The Bangles

The Bangles made it cool to stick a camera in the face of dancing pedestrians’ way before Pharrell Williams came along with that ‘Happy’ idea. In the video, we see people on the streets of New York striking an old pose – one that was a hit with the Pharaohs of Egypt. This pose, which can be found quite easily on Egyptians relics, requires the hands to be positioned quite like the arms of the ‘Swastika.’ If you aren’t familiar with Hindu iconography, imagine a person miming the nursery rhyme ‘I am a teapot.’ Thinking you are a teapot will surely help you walk like an Egyptian.

Here’s a cool video with an animated character performing some kickass moves to this song.  The original song video is another good place to pick up the trademark ‘walk like an Egytian’ step.

Vogue – Madonna

As Madonna croons in her Pop Queen voice “Common Vogue! Let your body move to the music,” a group of well-groomed, slick young men make sharp hand gestures in time to the music. The lyrics are interspersed with close ups of these gentlemen striking runway model-like poses, facial expressions included. What these fine lads are doing is ‘voguing,’ a dance style that emerged in the streets of Harlem in the 1980s. Inspired by the graceful gait of runway beauties, young gay black men created a dance style that mimicked the runway flamboyance of models. Called ‘Voguing’ after the fashion magazine ‘Vogue,’ this dance style features exaggerated hand movements, smooth spins, and poses based on those struck by catwalking models. Madonna’s pop hit brought this forgotten dance style back into popular consciousness in the 90s.

Gangnam Style

Psy’s Gangnam Style broke the internet when it released in June 2012. Everyone from little kids to grandmas enjoyed mimicking the horse-riding-like dance move popularized by Psy. Quite frankly, it’s impossible to try any other dance move with this song. It’s almost like Michael Jackson’s iconic Thriller move, where one couldn’t imagine replacing zombie-like walk with anything else.

This hilarious video of wizard Gandalf doing the Gandalf style, sorry, Gangnam style is pure gold.

Top Song Covers by Famous Musicians

Friday, September 2nd, 2016

When we fall in love with a new song by a familiar singer, we remember everything about the original – the tune, the video, the lyrics. It sets like stone in our head and we can hardly imagine it being sung any other way. But, there are a few brave songsters who dare to re-imagine even the most celebrated songs in a totally new way. Although they stay loyal to the tune and the lyrics of the song, they add their own twists to infuse it with new meaning. Here are 5 top covers, performed by some of the most renowned musicians of our time.

youtube

Demi Lovato – Give me Love

(Originally sung by Ed Sheeran)

This is a difficult song to sing because Ed Sheeran channelizes so much emotion in his vocals. Close your eyes and listen to this song and you’re sure to get goose bumps. It’s difficult to imagine anyone creating a better version of this song, but, Demi Lovato manages to do the impossible. Her version of this song is just as moving and she uses her powerful vocals to take the song to a whole new level. The crescendo, sung by the backups, is beautifully reimagined and is one of the high points of this cover version.

Ellie Goulding – Only Girl in the World

(Originally sung by Rihanna)

Ellie Goulding is known for taking a popular song and turning it on its head. She gives Rihanna’s 2010 album’s leading single the same treatment. From a dance pop track, she changes it into a soft and sweet number, perfect for late night listening.

Nick Jonas – Lay Me Down

(Originally sung by Sam Smith)

Sam Smith is famous for his stellar vocals and emotional punch. His songs tug at your heartstrings and make tears flood your eyes. It’s tough to imagine another singer pulling of a Sam Smith song to the same effect. But, Nick Jonas succeeds and succeeds brilliantly at it.

Adele – Make you Feel My Love

(Originally sung by Bob Dylan)

Bob Dylan’s raspy whisper makes this song sound wistful and wonderful. But, Adele’s powerful vocals add a whole different level of longing. There’s pain, there’s yearning, there’s suffering; Adele’s version makes the agony of one-sided love is tangible.

Lady Gaga – Imagine

(Originally sung by John Lennon)

This is one of the most iconic songs of John Lennon and trying to reimagine it is akin to sacrilege. Lady Gaga, however, does so bravely. The result is nothing short of genius. Clear, sonorous vocals lend depth to her version and her vocal prowess permits her to experiment with the chorus is ways never thought of before. Imagine that!

Greasing the Wheels of Love with Words

Thursday, May 19th, 2016

Warning: The love we’re talking about here is the fiery and passionate kind, the type proudly labelled ‘Romantic Love.’ No “Love you like a friend” nonsense shall be alluded to. Tread carefully.

After watching the brilliant Marathi movie, Sairat, we were inspired to meditate on this complex and consuming emotion called love. Yes, that all-powerful emotion, notorious for making the wisest man abandon wisdom and imparting, even to the most foolish, a startling amount of insight and understanding. Why does it wield the power it does, making the world go round or stand still as per its whims? More importantly, what exactly is love, or rather, how does one know one is in love? Does it feel like the cold shock of a morning shower, or is it more insidious, creeping up on you when you least expect it? Or perhaps it’s like a Jack-in-the-box, springing out at you with such gusto, it makes you want to scream, or scram. Well, it’s hard to find answers to these questions. Generations of brilliant minds have turned these queries over in their brilliant heads, and yet, have been unable to come up with unanimous answers. If anything, they’ve only been able to give us their understanding of love, which is coloured by their experience of it. Perhaps that is why we find so much matter on this emotion, for by eluding definition, it throws open a plethora of understandings for us to explore. Here are some poems that do their bit to make sense of this mystifying emotion.

wikinewsindia

Image courtesy: wikinewsindia

I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart) – E.E Cummings

We might recognize this poem as the one read by Maggie Feller to her sister, Rose, in the movie ‘In Her shoes.’  Because of its depth and lyrical quality, this poem is quite the lover’s favourite. What is also interesting about this poem, however, is the manner in which it is written. The poet deliberately places the sentences with endearments within parenthesis, such that they are carried inside the lines of the poem, much like his lover’s heart!

i carry your heart with me(i carry it in

my heart)i am never without it(anywhere

i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done

by only me is your doing, my darling)

Another Valentine – Wendy Cope

This smartly written poem is perfect for those in long-term relationships. Having felt and done it all before, the poet is quite blasé about Valentine’s Day, But, as she thinks and talk about this day, romantic feelings begin to creep and she can’t help but get mushy and affectionate with her valentine.

Today we are obliged to be romantic

And think of yet another valentine.

We know the rules and we are both pedantic:

Today’s the day we have to be romantic.

Our love is old and sure, not new and frantic.

You know I’m yours and I know you are mine.

And saying that has made me feel romantic,

My dearest love, my darling valentine.

Valentine – Carol Ann Duffy

In this poem, the poet calls a spade a spade. She isn’t starry-eyed about love, for she knows that it can be an incredibly difficult emotion. She also knows that love can hurt and the pain can stay for a long, long time, just like the odour of an onion. If you’re a realist and avoid soppy saying like the plague, this love poem is for you.

Here’s a snippet from the poem-

Not a red rose or a satin heart.

I give you an onion.

It is a moon wrapped in brown paper.

It promises light

like the careful undressing of love.

Here.

It will blind you with tears

like a lover.

It will make your reflection

a wobbling photo of grief.

To his coy mistress – Andrew Marvell

This is probably one of the most flirtatious poems you’ll ever come across. Despite the very overt sexual advances the speaker seems to be making to his mistress, we can still see the truth in his words and this, combined with his wit and directness, make him probably one of the most endearing and persuasive speakers in the history of poems! If you’re trying to win over the affections of a rather shy person, this is the poem to read to him or her.

Read the full poem here: To His Coy Mistress

A Drinking Song – W.B. Yeats

Just six lines long and rather simple in content and form, you might think that the poem cannot take on this weighty and complex emotion. But, it does, simply and beautifully. Just like falling in love.

Wine comes in at the mouth

And love comes in at the eye;

That’s all we shall know for truth

Before we grow old and die.

I lift the glass to my mouth,

I look at you, and I sigh.

Well, we hope these poems help you draw your own understanding of love, well if not, at least you now have some fab lines to use on your next/on going crush.

P.S: Poetry makes good pick up lines.

Exploring the Work of the Obscure Genius Sadaat Hasan Manto

Friday, May 13th, 2016

Although academics has exposed young literature enthusiasts to the works of several gifted Indian writers, it’s unfortunate that the work of one particularly perceptive writer has been conveniently and purposely omitted from syllabuses. Perhaps that’s because he isn’t Indian but a Pakistani; or because the topic he writes extensively on is more uncomfortable than his nationality – The Partition of 1947. We’re talking about the controversial short story writer Sadaat Hasan Manto. Manto was a writer and playwright who used his talents to explore and expose human nature under dire circumstances. He drew inspiration from the stories he seen unfolding around him, during and after the partition, as well as from his own experience. His plot lines are bold and he often touch upon subjects that were considered too sensitive to be written about. ‘Khol Do’ and ‘Thanda Gosht’ are brilliant examples of his courageous writing. Unfortunately, his frank treatment of such topics led to him being tried for obscenity six times and this, along with the social stigmatization he experienced, caused him to hit the bottle and eventually lose his life at the young age of 42. However, his legacy lives on till today through his work and is read not just by Pakistanis or Indians, but by all those who wish to understand better the impact one of the most tragic chapters in our nation’s history had on the people of those times, through an honest, upfront and ballsy storyteller.

It’s difficult to do justice to the genius of this writer in such a short article, but we can celebrate his intelligence and wit by revisiting some of his profound sayings. To fulfill that purpose, and to celebrate his birthday (11th May, 1912) we present 6 of his most powerful quotes.

Manto

On the partition. The strength of this observation is, however, felt even today.

“Hindustan had become free. Pakistan had become independent soon after its inception but man was still slave in both these countries — slave of prejudice … slave of religious fanaticism … slave of barbarity and inhumanity.”

His rumination on the capriciousness of life and the powerlessness of the individual.

“For me, remembrance of things past has always been a waste of time, and what’s the point of tears? I don’t know. I’ve always been focussed on today. Yesterday and tomorrow hold no interest for me. What had to happen, did, and what will happen, will.”

Even during the years when patriarchy was an unquestioned norm, Manto stood up for women and questioned society for its hypocrisy.

“A man remains a man no matter how poor his conduct. A woman, even if she were to deviate for one instance, from the role given to her by men, is branded a whore. She is viewed with lust and contempt. Society closes on her doors it leaves ajar for a man stained by the same ink. If both are equal, why are our barbs reserved for the woman?”

Manto takes a dig at the self-appointed custodians of the nation’s ‘honor.’

“We’ve been hearing this for some time now — Save India from this, save it from that. The fact is that India needs to be saved from the people who say it should be saved.”

Manto tells you what it feels like to be an honest writer.

‘In that sense, I don’t consider myself a writer so much as a pick-pocket. One who picks his own pocket and hands over its contents to you. Have you ever seen such a fool as me?’

Manto’s touching understanding of one of the most powerful emotions we are capable of experiencing – love.

“But love, whether in Multan or on Siberia’s icy tundra, whether in the winter or the summer, whether among the rich or the poor, whether among the beautiful or the ugly, whether among the crude or refined, love is always just love. There’s no difference.”