November 18, 2016

Magic is one great untold story about time: Day 2 of Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai Litfest

Mumbai: On Day 2 of Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai Litfest, one of the panel discussions was ‘Then what happens? Do authors know where the story is going?’ Chaired by ex-associate professor and head of department of English at St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, Shefali Balsari-Shah, the panel comprised author Amish Tripathi, novelist and literary critic Giorgio Montefoschi and Swiss author Monica Cantieni.

Author Amish Tripathi; novelist and literary critic Giorgio Montefoschi; and Swiss author Monica Cantieni in a discussion on ‘Then what happens?’ chaired by ex-associate professor and head of department of English at St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, Shefali Balsari-Shah

Montefoschi started the discussion by declaring the writer is blind and the novel is the fruit of his blindness. “Literature is contrary of exactness. At times, when I am unclear of what comes next, I leave a line midway and get to it the next day.” Tripathi pointed out, while it is Shakespeare’s 400th year, Kalidas’s work has been known for more than 16 centuries.

He said, “Traditionally Indian storytelling does not have a conclusion.” In terms of thinking of the end of a story, a novel must touch emotions and have a core philosophy. “Only 25 percent of what I imagine is reflected in my novels. For aspiring writers, I strongly suggest not to read self-help books and focus on discovering the story as it goes,” he added.

Sharing her approach to storytelling, CantieniI said she starts by creating a picture in her mind. As she moves further into her creative process, more clarity comes. She said, “Novels can be the beginning of thoughtful discussions and usually the characters lead me to a story. I also learn from my characters, but at times they lead me to a dead end. Also, at times, I have the line but it does not suit the particular character and hence I move it to another character’s mouth.”

Australian author, journalist and researcher John Zubrzycki spoke on ‘Empires of Enchantment: Magical encounters between India and Australia’ at Tata Literature Live!

In a parallel straight talk, Australian author, journalist and researcher John Zubrzycki spoke on ‘Empires of Enchantment: Magical encounters between India and Australia’. Zubrzycki spoke about various magicians who travelled from India to the west and vice versa.

He said the links between Australia and India go back a century and a half. The dozens of individuals involved in the magician trail represent a rich cultural legacy. It is imperative to keep the rich heritage of shared magic alive, lest it be forgotten. He rounded up the talk by saying, Magic is one great untold story about time.”

Later in the day, lyricist, writer and filmmaker Gulzar will be honoured with Tata Literature Live! Poet Laureate Award for 2016.

Related links:
Day 1 of the 7th edition of Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest ended with an intense debate on friendship between India and Pakistan
The seventh edition of Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest emphasises young readers and writers must step forward to shape the future of literature
Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest to present the Theatre Group's Sultan Padamsee Award
Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest to present an array of culturally rich and stimulating performances from across the globe
Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest announces shortlists for five coveted Book Awards
Celebrated poet and lyricist Gulzar honoured with the Tata Literature Live! Poet Laureate Award 2016
Amitav Ghosh to receive the Tata Literature Live! Lifetime Achievement Award
Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest announces longlists for five coveted book awards
Wordsmiths from across the world to congregate at Tata Literature Live! The Mumbai LitFest 2016
Take the Tata Literature Live! Survey 2016