Saturday, 10 November 2012

The music and poetry of Amir Khusrau came alive yesterday evening in the UT Guest House, as noted documentary maker, author and researcher, Yousuf Saeed, transported everyone to the mystical world of 14th century Sufi saint's unparallel work.
We present here an interview with Yousuf Saeed that Day and Night TV channel broadcast.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

An evening with Amir Khusrau

'Chaap Tilak Sab Chhini...', and numerous other famous compositions by 14th century scholar, poet, musician, and composer, Amir Khusrau or Khusrow, dot the music of Indian subcontinent.
A sufi mystic and spiritual disciple of Nizamuddin Auliya of Delhi, Khusrau is regarded as the 'father of qawwali' and inventor of tabla.

Chandigarh Literary Society is organising 'Shaam-e-Amir Khusrau' on Friday, 9th November 2012 at 5:30pm at the UT Guest House, Chandigarh.

Famous independent filmmaker and author Yousuf Saeed would provide an overview of Khusrau's music and poetry through video presentations.  Yousuf Saeed is a celebrated documentary maker.

Yousuf gained fame with his popular science series for Doordarshan, ‘Turning Point’ during 1991-94, and has a large number of documentaries and short films, books, articles and research papers to his credit. His documentary ‘Khayal Darpan’ and ‘Basant’ have been screened internationally, and has recently authored a book, “Muslim Devotional Art in India”.

Everyone is invited to experience Amir Khusrau on 9th November.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Peep into the Short Story Awards Function

Day and Night News Channel provided an excellent peep into the proceedings of the Short Story Writing Competition's awards function held at UT Guest House.  Enjoy.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Short Story Writers Awarded

Short-story writing is not an easy task but we never expected nearly 100 entries for our short-story writing competition, says author bureaucrat Sumita Misra, President of Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS).
CLS gave away the prizes to the three top winners of the competition at UT Guest House today.  
Dinker Vashisht won the first prize for his story ‘August Rose’, while Nayantara Singh’s “The Last Tsar”, and Suneet Kheterpal’s untitled story won the second and third prizes respectively. The jury also selected Nayan Jain’s ‘Encounters’, Kailash Srinivasan for ‘Super Khan’, and Pankaj Sharma’s ‘Goodwill Hunting’ for special consolation prizes.
All the six stories were read out by the respective authors to the audience and later the three-member jury comprising city-based noted author Khushwant Singh, writer and journalist Nirupma Dutt, and academician Neel Kamal Puri, spoke about the nuances of writing and appreciating the genre of short-story writing.
The competition involved completing a 1000-word story beginning with the cue, “She was thoroughly enjoying her stroll when a man lying prone on the roadside caught her attention. Fearing the worst, she turned the limp figure over. Her heart leapt a mile when she saw the man’s face…”
Encourage by the response, CLS would be organizing similar competitions to engage and encourage people in creative writing, Sumita Misra informed.
It was a full house 

All the short stories are recited.

The celebrated jury members,
Nirupma Dutt and Khushwant Singh interacted with the audience

The prizes were sponsored by Nando’s and English Book Shop.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Her heart leapt a mile when she saw the man's face...

“She was thoroughly enjoying her stroll when a man lying prone on the roadside caught her attention. Fearing the worst, she turned the limp figure over.  Her heart leapt a mile when she saw the man's face...”

Imagine over 100 stories beginning with this one sentence and yet ending with completely differing conclusions.  Who was this man?

It is time to find out who this man was on 1st of September 2012. Chandigarh Literary Society spends an evening with the six top winners of the Short Story Writing Competition that we organised in July.  It was simply an overwhelming response. And during the last days, our email was hyperactive with more and more short stories pouring in from everywhere.  Many burnt midnight oil to create a plot fit for their story, and one youngster, the last minute entrant, did become a winner.

From 4pm to 6pm at UT Guest House in Sector 6, Chandigarh, on Saturdayt, the 1st September, it would be exciting time to see the six top winners unfolding the plots of their short stories.

And we shall also have the celebrated three-member city-based authors who formed the jury for this competition, namely Khushwant Singh, Neel Kamal Puri and Nirupama Dutt, present on the occasion for an interaction to help us understand the nuances of writing and appreciating the genre of short-story writing.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

CLS to set up mini-libraries

Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS) shall be setting up mini-libraries in select institutions in the city under its Gift a Book programme, informed Ms. Sumita Misra, President of CLS.

CLS launched ‘Gift a Book’ programme in May this year to make available the books not otherwise accessible to certain sections of society where CLS would set up mini-libraries, she added.

The first collection box for books has been placed outside the British Library in Sector 8, Chandigarh, for a month and would be rotated to different public places besides setting up more collection points.

A large number of books which we have read and are not using, can be put in the box or brought at the functions organised by CLS from time to time which would be gifted to the select institutions, she added.

CLS has identified several institutions where it would set up mini-libraries and gift books contributed by the public including Cheshire Homes in Chandigarh, Vatika School for Deaf and Mute, Senior Citizen Homes, etc., over a period of time.

CLS members brought along books to gift for this project at the British Library (see photos)

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Our partners, British Library Chandigarh is organising a Wikipedia Workshop on 24th and 25th August from 4 to 7pm.

This is a creativity workshop to understand how Wikipedia works, how one can contribute to it, and Wikipedia Ambassador Programme or Wikipedia Clubs. 

Since there are limited seats to be allotted on first-come-first-served basis, those interested in participation must confirm it to Ms Christina Singh, 0172 2745195 / 96 immediately.

Participants are advised to bring their own laptop/tablet/ipad with internet connectivity for this workshop. 

More information can be had from British Council website. Click Here.

Hasya Kavi Sammelan

As a part of its commitment to promote literary activities in the region and bring people closer to the literateurs, Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS) organised a Haasya Kavi Sammelan on 27th July at Indradhanush Auditorium at Panchkula.
Mrs. Sumita Misra, IAS, Chairperson of CLS welcomed the guests and poets and reiterated the aim of Chandigarh Literary Society to promote literary activities for the “Classes and the masses”. 
Famous Shri Surinder Sharma, along with  Mahendar Ajnabi, Ved Parkash Ved, Yusuf Bhardwaj, Dr. Sita Sagar and Ritu Goyal, participated in the show.
Surinder Sharma, one of the most popular poker-faced humorous poet, famous for his “chaar lainaa suna reha hoon”, was the favourite of the show, he hails from Haryana but often uses Marwari dialect in his poetry.
Delhi-based Ved Parkash Ved, is known for his pithy and meaningful poetry and has been honoured with Kaka Hathrasi Sammaan, and Omprakash Aditya Samman,
Mahendra Ajnabi, winner of Kaka Hathrasi Award, is another best Hasya-Vyangya Kavi, dominating the kavi sammellans for last 25 years.
Yusuf Bhardwaj also hails from Hisar District of Haryana who left his teaching career to immerse himself completely in Haryanvi poetry.
Dr. Sita Sagar is another versatile poetess of the country who has made her place in Hasya-Vyanga genre having travelled extensively abroad, and honored by the Prime Minister of India Shri Atal Behari Vajpayee.
Ritu Goyal, a software professional working in Pennsylvania, started as an architect before switching her profession. Writing poetry was her passion since she was in the fifth grade in the school and has also published a children’s story book
The show was attended by a large and distinguished gathering including senior officers of both Punjab and Haryana, and the citizens of both Chandigarh and Panchkula.  Residents who attended, were all praise for the efforts of CLS in bringing programmes like this for the enjoyment of general public.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Award Function for Short Story Writing Competition Winners

Chandigarh Literary Society shall be organising the award giving function to recognise the winners and participants in the Short Story Writing Competition.
All are requested to block their dates to be there on 1st September 2012 at UT Guest House.
More details shall follow shortly. 

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

You're Invited for a Laughter Session on 27th July

The unbeatable renowned stand-up artists and poets, the 'Haasya Kavi' would be at Indradhanush Auditorium this Friday at Panchkula at 6:30pm.  Don't forget to join in to meet with Shri Surinder Sharma, along with five other noted poets, namely, Mahendar Ajnabi, Ved Parkash Ved, Yusuf Bhardwaj, and two ladies, Dr. Sita Sagar and Ritu Goyal. 

Join in with your family and friends. Entry is free. 

Monday, 23 July 2012

Penguin Books releases eBooks

Penguin Books India has launched over 240 titles of books published in 2012 and select best sellers in ebook format which would be available on all major international ebook retail outlets, including Amazon, Apple, OLF, Kobo and Google, etc. 
Penguin India intends to have the largest digital catalogue of Indian ebooks by the end of the year.
To read more, click here.

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Bonanza for CLS Members

The members of Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS) can get special privilege for their membership to the British Library.  British Library at Chandigarh very thoughtfully extended a special privilege membership fee structure for CLS members as follows : 

Actual Membership Fee
For CLS Members
Gold Plus & Diamond
Diamond Plus

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Chandigarh Literary Society announces Short Story Competition Winners

Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS), which had organised a short-story writing competition last month announced the winners.
There was an encouraging response to the competition and within a span of 20 days we had received 98 entries in various languages, and a three-panel jury comprising of city-based noted author Khushwant Singh, writer and journalist Nirupama Dutt, and author and educationist Neel Kamal Puri, evaluated the entries and selected the winners, who will be recognized and awarded at a public function soon, informed Sumita Misra, President of CLS.

Dinker Vashisht has won the first prize for his story ‘August Rose’, while Nayantara Singh’s “The Last Tsar”, and Suneet Kheterpal’s untitled story won the second and third prize respectively.
The jury also selected Nayan Jain’s ‘Encounters’, Kailash Srinivasan for ‘Super Khan’, and Pankaj Sharma ‘Goodwill Hunting’ for special consolation prizes.
CLS would be holding such literary competitions regularly to encourage young writers to share their creativity, informed Ms Misra. 

Saturday, 23 June 2012

The Winter of Our Discontent

This day, on 23rd June 1961 John Steinbeck's The Winter of Our Discontent was published.  Despite not-very-favorable reviews after launch, he went on to win the Nobel in 1962. 
In his acceptance speech, he said, "the writer is delegated to declare and to celebrate man's proven capacity for greatness of heart and spirit—for gallantry in defeat, for courage, compassion and love. In the endless war against weakness and despair, these are the bright rally flags of hope and of emulation. I hold that a writer who does not believe in the perfectibility of man has no dedication nor any membership in literature."

Gift a Book

Please keep the books that you can spare and share separately.  The next CLS event would be announced soon, and you can bring your collection to us so that we can gift it over to someone who would love to read.  The Gift a Book box will also be ready soon and would be placed at a public place where you can drop the books to be gifted.
In the meanwhile, Mail Today, published a little snipped about our initiative today.  A good reminder for everyone to continue to support it.
Fortunately, Chandigarh is waking up to literary activities and everyday we find joyous 'parents' (authors) fondly holding their 'new born' (book).  Keep writing. Keep sharing your thoughts. There is no better mentor and friend than a book.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Today is the Last Day!

Each day is a gift, someone said. And if it be the last day, what you would do? I'm reminded of Nickelbeck's song "If today was your last day".  It says "Leave no stones unturned", and "so live like you're never livin twice".  A great inspiration.
But today is the last day, indeed...for you to let the creative fluids flow and enter your short story in the CLS Short Story Writing Competition.
Come on. Let's do it. 

Monday, 11 June 2012

It is easy to make things complicated...

"It is easy to make things complicated, but genius make things simple and short."
This is what inspires Dinesh Kumar, another prolific writer of our city, whose latest book "Marketing Channels" has just been published by Oxford University Press. 
My inspiration for writing has always been how to make things or thoughts, which look complicated or difficult to grasp at one go, simple, short, and easy. 
My best time for writing is from 6am to 9am. I just go to my study, sit on the comfortable chair, and start writing. 

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Writing tips from an author

We spoke with Sangeet Sharma, an architect by profession, who has published six books including one of poetry, and is always bubbling with enthusiasm. Every time you meet him you can see that there is something brewing at the back of his mind, and at times creative flashes of his subconscious can be seen in his expressive eyes.
How do you get inspired to write? 
It is the journey of the writing which is so  inspiring. The commitment to the protagonist, the plot the streak of winning,  the unhindered imagination and the will to put on paper; the aspirations are so inspiring.  Moreover, many authors may deny, but all books are autobiographical to some extent. It is this thrill of putting into words the elements of personal experience which inspire you. 
Any specific moment when the streak of inspiration strikes you?
This inspiration can strike anytime. It could be In the middle of the night, at lunch, at work place, on while you are travelling and have time to think.  There is no fixed time and place for writing. The only longer time required on the desk is when I edit.

What is the best pose you strike before writing? 
I go straight on the computer and start writing. 

Well. What's your take on it? And what we are asking you is to write just 1000 words of short story, with clue to the story already there. Just click here for more details. 

Thursday, 7 June 2012

How did the great authors produce great books?

Different writers get inspired differently.  Here's a melange of tips one can pick up from some of the greatest writers of our times. What suits you?  Or how you get down to the business of writing...share with us. 
"Breakfast at Tiffany's" author Truman Capote would do his first draft in longhand using pencil while lying down on the bed or a couch with cigarette and coffee.  He won't leave his bed even while preparing the final draft balancing his typewriter on his knees. 
Though Ernest Hemingway was  known for his love for Bacchus but would never write while drunk. He was a regular writer and would pen at least 500 words every day. 
However for James Joyce that was not the criteria, who always was proud of and happy if he could write down just a few sentences in a day.  
Another famous American writer Philip Roth would walk half a mile for every page he wrote, and kept a separate studio to focus on his writings. 
Great novels like 'Lolita', 'Pale Fire' came from the pen of Vladimir Nabokov who would write on index cards so that he could arrange them in order to create the right sequence for his novels.  
Today there are numerous videos full of mathematical jugglery on creating a great story, the writing courses, and what not available online...but to my mind, the best way is what suits you the most. 
Most important, however, is to sit down, take a paper and a pen, and start doodling with your idea. And what's more, we have already given you a clue to start with. You have to finish it in another 900 words. Click here.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

It's not a ripple...but an Earthquake!

In an "Introduction to the 1997 Fish Anthology, Dog Days & Other Stories", the author, Joseph O’Connor, has great observation about the art of short story writing. What it can be? May be this would inspire few of the budding writers to try their hands on short story writing and send it across to CLS for the competition.  What O'Connor says is : 
"A short story is a glance at the miraculous. Joyce used a religious word. He called his stories ‘epiphanies’. A good short story is almost always about a moment of profound realization. Or a hint of that. A quiet bomb. There is a record by the American singer Tori Amos called Little Earthquakes. That’s a good metaphor for a short story. Often, a good short story will be a little earthquake."

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Book Worm on the Prowl !

There had been lots of activities in the tricity and the most talked about was the 12th anniversary celebration of the British Council Library in the city.  The library members and youngsters from various schools and colleges participated in a painting competition to design a book cover for an Oliver Twist's Great Expectations or David Cooperfield's book. 

British Library has come up with a special offer for the members of the Chandigarh Literary Society too. 

CLS launches ‘Gift a Book’ programme

Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS) has launched ‘Gift a Book’ programme to inculcate interest in book reading and make books accessible to certain specific sections of society who do not have the facility.
“Most of us have a large number of books lying around in our homes that we have already read which can be shared with others,” Ms Sumita Misra, president of CLS informed.
“The ‘Gift a Book’ is an initiative to share this treasure trove lying in our homes with children and others who do not have access to good literature,” she added.
CLS has identified several institutions where it would set up libraries, and to start with, CLS gifted a set of books contributed by its members to 'Snehalaya'.  Mr. K.K. Sharma, Advisor to the Administrator, UT, Chandigarh, commended CLS initiative and personally handed over the books to the inmates. 
In each of CLS get-togethers, a ‘Gift a Book’ desk would be set up where members and anyone can leave a book, which would be collected, and later delivered to the selected institution.
Sumita Misra hoped that the people of tri-city area would come forward and partner in this campaign, by sharing the books of literature, no text books, with others.  

An evening with Dinesh Raghuvanshi

On 4th May, CLS organised an evening with noted poet Dinesh Raghuvanshi at UT Guest House.  To the packed house, Dinesh recited his geet, ghazals, and kept the audience amused with his repartee. 

Mr. K.K. Sharma, Advisor to the Administrator, UT, Chandigarh was the chief guest. Mr. Brijender Singh, Deputy Commissioner along with many litterateurs of the city were present. 

Dinesh is a prolific writer and has four anthologies to his credit, “Aasmaan Baaki Hai”, “Do Pal”, “Ankaha is se adhik hai”, and “Bachhe bat nahin karte”.  HIs ghazals have been sung by noted singers like Ghulam Ali and Jagjit Singh. 

Widely travelled, Dinesh Raghuvanshi  has been featured prominently on many television channels and is a most sought-after poet.  Born in Uttar Pradesh in village Kherpur in District Bulandshahar, Dinesh lives in Faridabad. 

Thursday, 22 March 2012

The Best Thing About You is...You

Those of us who missed the opportunity to attend CLS's Meet the Author programme with the best selling bollywood actor Anupam Kher.  Here is the video.

(In case you are unable to watch the video click this link)

Empty Bench

A budding poet of our city, Kiran Kauchhur, who is a lawyer, and loves to write poetry has sent us a poem which we reproduce here.  There is a beautiful photograph that has been clicked by her brother, which Kiran says, helps her get inspiration.  Our best wishes to her.

From the window everyday
I saw the empty bench
It sat there day and night
Facing the scorching sun
Resisting the harsh blowing wind
Winters couldn’t make it numb
Nor  the rain dampen its spirits
It waited there for some company
but none would stop to rest in its arms
I had no desire to fulfill its wish
for it was meant only for that soul 
who be tired and could walk no more.

Welcome to CLS

Chandigarh Literary Society (CLS) welcomes you. 
CLS invites creative minds to be a part of this network which will encourage literary and creative writing in this region.  It shall also serve as a forum to bring together writers, publishers, academia, intellectuals, scholars and students on one single platform.  
There would also be many opportunities to get inspired from some of the legendary writers and best selling authors through our 'Meet the Author' programme. We had a great beginning on 15th March when noted bollywood actor and best selling author Anupam Kher, shared an insight into his book "The Best Thing About You is...You" at UT Guest House. It was a full house. And all those who were able to make it to the event would remember it for time to come. 
We have received tremendous response from the people of this tricity area who have enrolled themselves as members of CLS.  We shall very soon be having a get-together as we get ready to plan for our next event.  This blog would serve as a source of regular information to you all. 
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