Tag Archives: writer

Excerpt from ‘Be Careful What You Wish For’

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SuZanne Ahlin is a fellow author from Ex-L-Ence Publishing. She has written two books: A Secret World and Be Careful What You Wish For.  Here are a few lines from the latter.

Please note, these excerpts are not what you will see on the “Look Inside” feature on Amazon. So you are getting more of an insight into the story.

SuZanne, your book sounds exciting.

They started by announcing all those that would remain as heads of their clans, then they arrived at the Vampires.

They turned to Alexis,

“You have brought an Anim to us without permission,” another breath among everyone was taken. They looked at the head of the werewolves,

“Does your clan have any claims?”

“She’s not to be claimed, she is my property!” Alexis’s voice sounded like thunder and people looked terrified.

“You dare defy us once again?” One of the men stood up, he looked furious.

Jeannie didn’t know what was happening to her. It was like somebody else was talking through her.

“He doesn’t defy you; I belong to Alexis and no one else.” She was flying over the floor now. “Is there anyone here that dares to defy my decision?” She turned to the three men, “Do you?”

Everyone in the ballroom was shocked that she had challenged The Regime.

The man with the cane stood up and went to her. She landed, but there was a glow around her, not like the burning one but another kind.

To read more, you may buy her book here.

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Some day I’ll be a writer

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It started a long time ago. This aching need to write. To have my name attached to a work, such and such title, by Rohini Singha. That was my maiden name. I sometimes thought I’d be mysterious and have a penname. Everyone would wonder, “Who is that writer?” Critics and reviewers would declare, “Once again the mysterious author, Madame X, has captivated her readers with a scintillating tale of intrigue.” I was a great Agatha Christie fan in the days when my dream of being a writer was still limpid in its new-born vision. I was also unclear about what genre of story telling I would pursue. Madame X was the popular appellation for a woman of intrigue.

All this gradually became something of a private joke for me. By the time I’d read more complex, character and philosophy-driven work, the desire to write mysteries gave way to some day writing the great transformational novel. The imaginary nom de plume was replaced in my mind by my own and eventually my married name. It was still something that would happen “some day”. Through the years, although it was never pursued with any intensity, the dream was also never abandoned.

I’d potter away at the writing, late at night. After various domestic and motherly chores were completed, when a particular kind of silence enveloped the house, everyone was asleep and I was still awake. That’s when the draw of pen and paper, a phrase or comment I’d heard earlier in the day, or a look in the eye of a passer-by would nag at my brain. Like a sailor drawn by a siren’s song I’d steer my thoughts in that direction, embark on a tale and let it carry me wherever it wished to go. Oh the magic of those nights when I wasn’t reading another writer’s work!

It’s not to say that I never explored the possibility of publishing. Back then it was an arduous process. No Internet. No Google. I’d submitted manuscripts to publishers and agents and never heard from them. Finally we were in the Internet era. E-publishing was a reality. I submitted yet another story without much hope but with unfailing enthusiasm to an online publisher in the USA. Several months later she emailed me, “I like your story – Desert Flower and will publish it…” I read the message three times. Tears of joy welling up and spilling over.

After all the excitement settled I looked more closely at the publisher’s site. OMG, as they say today. Romance had a broad interpretation, and, although I haven’t read it, I suspect even Fifty Shades of Grey would pale into several shades of white at the list and variety of romance on display. I couldn’t possibly have my real name attached to this! I decided on a penname for Desert Flower – Zohra Saeed. My name, Rohini is Venus, the morning star, and that’s what Zohra means. Saeed, was taken from my old guru and mentor’s first name Saeed.

There’s a whole other story to this. That publisher eventually closed down, the rights reverted to me and Ex-L-Ence agreed to republish it. For those of you who have been following my outbursts of delight, it has done rather well over the last month or so, at one point it even reached #6 on the Kindle store. In the meantime Ex-L-Ence Publishing came into my life and published my collection of poems – Corpoetry – with my real name attached.

Two dreams have come true.
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Desert Flower at #6 on Amazon, UK

The Relationship Bazaar

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I was greeted this morning with a Whatsapp message that was really moving and expressed in an almost Gibran-like ‘voice’. It was written in Hindi, and another friend, whose Hindi has fallen into disuse, couldn’t read it as fluently as he would have liked to. So I made a quick and hasty translation.

But, as with a lot of poetry, once something starts buzzing in your head, until you sit down and actually write it it won’t leave you. So, of course I did just that, and here it is:

The Relationship Bazaar

As I was walking in the marketplace

My feet stopped at the Relationship Bazaar.

I looked around and saw it filled

With kinship on sale for near and far

 

Relationships of every kind

Were offered everywhere

‘Relationships for sale’ they cried

‘Come buy a few to spare’

 

Each seller had a lively trade

And I walked up to one

‘Aha!’ he cried, ‘What will you buy?

I have everything under the sun!’

 

With trembling lips I asked the seller

‘How much and what’s for sale?’

With a flourish he said

‘Most everything and some beyond the pale.’

 

‘What would you like? What will you buy?

I have a wondrous range

Special ties with a son, or father

I have all good, some strange.’

 

‘Choose from a sister or a brother

Dear shopper what’s your choice?

Humanity or the love of mother

Faith? Pray, where is your voice?’

 

‘Come, come,’ he cajoled me,

‘Come, come, don’t hesitate!

Ask for something, anything

Your silence on me grates.’

 

With fear and sorrow in my voice

And with a great unease

I sighed and asked him, whispering

‘Do you have friendship, please?’

 

He stopped mid-sale, he stopped and stared

As if I’d lost my mind

Then tearfully he turned and said

‘Ah that is hard to find.

 

‘For friendship is the relationship

On which the world depends

It’s not for sale, it has no price

No price that can be named

 

For friendship is worth everything

This earth and then some more

It is a pure and selfless thing

And this you can be sure

 

The day that friendship’s offered

For a price and put on sale

Why then my dear, dear shopper

The world it will have failed

 

This globe will be uprooted

And lose its orbit quite

The day that friendship’s offered

And can be quoted for a price.

Panchatantra – The Monkey & The Wedge

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This story told in rhyme is a continuation of the first book of the Panchatantra, which as we know, consists of five books – Mitra-bhed: The Loss of Friends; Mitra-lābha or Mitra-samprāpti: The Gaining of Friends; Kākolūkīyam: War and Peace; Labdhapraṇāśam: Loss Of Gains; Aparīkṣitakārakaṃ: Ill-Considered Action / Rash deeds. The Monkey & The Wedge is the second of the stories contained within “Mitra-Bhed”.

The Monkey & The Wedge

So Dama-nak-a heard from Kara-tak

The story of the monkey and the wedge

How a merchant once began to build up

A temple of wood at his garden’s edge

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