The Humble ‘Consumption’ Beginnings
I have been a super proud avid reader for as long as I can remember. So much so that it forms part of my resume, my long introduction in social events and even my twitter bio (hell ya!)
The journey started way back in my tweens when Champaks and Nandans ruled the lots. I always found it easy to read all the stories of the CBSE English curriculum book — Read for Pleasure (yes ma’am I did!) well in advance, even though they were boring at best.
This seems like a good time to mention that development of this trait was not by accident. While my parents never really stopped me from reading anything and everything, they never really bought me any books, save for the occasional Tinkle or Nagraj comic book while on our annual 2-day long train ride to my home town (more on that in later posts).
I was expected to do with whatever was lying around.
Which was not a lot.
Which made me look for more.
Which I did.
And therefore most of my reading happened not in my own house, a house that had abundant supply of sarita (yes i still remember all the baatein jo dil ko chhu gayi) and women’s era, but in a friends’ house who back then lived nearby and whose parents (the mother in particular) bought him books. Bless her soul for it was there that I discovered the joys of Oliver Twist and The Great Expectations. Pity they didn’t have a dictionary in the rack else the joy of reading those classics would have been double.
Never mind the halved joy, it did light up something, a spark in a candle, that has been burning since.
I was lucky to soon move to a proper big school with infrastructure (which meant it having a roof — more on this later as well) and discovered a library full of St. Clare’s and Malory towers, Nancy Drews and Hardy Boys, Secret Seven and several others. I changed schools again and by then I had made friends with like-minded folks who had good books that I could borrow and had also discovered a large public library with an amazing fiction collection.
Reading as a habit had made itself home.
I have sometimes wondered why I gravitated towards reading. Parents not stopping definitely helped, but they were fairly laidback.
Sometimes I wonder if it were these books which helped me weave a continuous story in my life. By the time I had finished my schooling, I had already lived in 5 places and shifted across 6 schools.
While the school address changed, and my teachers were replaced with new ones, Enid Blyton helped evolve my aspirations in line with the twins’ ambitions and Michael Crichton’s sci-fi continued expanding my imagination. By the time I entered my undergrad, web 2.0 was already spreading its tentacles (referring to Orkut and Facebook here) and I had been happily consuming content for the last 10 years or so.
And now, 10 years later, I consume more than I can every imagine, with content platforms being all pervasive — long-form, short-form, 140 char., 1500 words, q&a, posts, blogs, listicles, you name it, the list goes on and on..
But why was I only consuming? Why has this been a one way street for me? What was stopping me from writing?
I have wanted to give back to this amazing universe that I was taking from, but didn’t know the head or tail of it.
There was also the question of being outdated, outlandish, unnecessary, irrelevant, insensible, bland, blah, blah.
You get the drift — basically, plain old fear of rejection.
Whatever it was, it took a while to overcome. For now, I have convinced myself that once I cross over to the side that creates, there is joy to be had.
The Joy of Creation
The Joy in Sharing
and I want to embrace these two from now on
The not-so-Humble ‘Creation’ Beginnings
I plan to write about things that matter to me — business, entrepreneurship, VC, parenting, feminism, travel, family, friendships, pets, history, future, logic, food, books, ideas, environment, values, equality, education, wholistic living, wellness…
Its a long list.
Hope you enjoy.