Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My Interview in The Hoot


What do a bunch of journalists do when they organize a retreat for themselves to discuss writing? They end up trying their hand at fiction. CHANDANA BANERJEE describes this unusual experiment.

Every day and every minute of our professional lives is spent obsessing over the written word. Does this article read well; will the story enthrall readers; could I have come up with a better idea; how do I add more chutzpah to the copy? – Questions that all writers ask themselves a zillion times in the length and breadth of their writing careers.

As journalists, writers and editors, we're constantly honing our craft and always trying to come up with a good story, crisp copy, and a flash of dazzling creativity. But somewhere between chasing deadlines and bagging bylines; between juggling home and office, work and family, the general business of living and earning begins to deplete the pool of creativity that each of us has. That's when we need to getaway from it all and lavish some time on our muse; spend some time nurturing our passion for the written word.

A group of six freelance journalists and writers did just that in the beginning of this month. Armed with notebooks and pens, they set out for a writer's retreat at Yercaud, a picturesque and serene hill station 40 kilometers from Salem, Tamil Nadu.

"Take time to retreat; only then you can leap ahead," states Radhika Meganathan, the brain behind this writer's retreat. Radhika, the Managing Editor of Chandamama.com and a freelance journalist and author from Chennai, says that its wanderlust and the talent for planning that made her coordinate this writer's retreat. Having organized a weekend retreat a year ago, Radhika wanted to plan a longer one that would focus on writing.

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