Monday, February 25, 2013

Sharing: HOW TO BLOG

A few of my new author-friends from Indireads were keen to know how to blog. I have created this article especially for them and of course, for anyone else who is interested.

What’s a Blog?

A blog is a personal space where you can jot down whatever you feel like. You can keep it private, share it with just some friends or open it to the public. It’s basically like an e-diary where you can pour whatever runs through your mind. There is also the extra facility for adding photos, videos and links.

Better yet, the blog space is absolutely free of cost. So what are you waiting for?

Blogspot and WordPress are the most popular forms of blog spaces available on the internet. Having never used it I have no idea how WordPress functions, but I am sure there is a whole load of information that you can find on the internet.

I will call myself an expert on Blogspot offered by Google. I used this blogspace for my blogs.

How to set up a blog on Blogspot?

Go to and sign in with your gmail id. Click on Create a new blog and the screen will show you Title & Address.

The Title can be changed whenever you please but the address cannot be. Think well and come up with one. Mine goes like this –

Then are a number of standard templates to choose from. Explore and check them all out. That can be quite a cheering experience as there is a wide variety to select from. And it can be changed at will too.

Explore all the buttons and keep experimenting with the design. That’s the only way to improve your blog.

You can fit the settings to your taste on whom you want to see your blogs – only yourself, specific email ids of friends that you can invite or the whole world.

How to post articles?

You have a title for your article and then the blog itself. Type this out on a word document. Many people do it in a notepad, but please note that a notepad does not offer spell-grammar check and that’s the reason why you find a lot of typos on blogs. Reading a badly spelt article can be quite irritating. Don’t be lazy! Use a word document to type out your blog. Check for spelling & grammar and then copy paste the whole thing on a notepad.

Why do we do this? Sometimes, the web does not accept symbols and punctuations used from the different kind of TEXTS (Eg.: Georgia, Comic Sans, Calibri, Bookman Old Style) that we use on word. These may show as gibberish on your blog. That’s the reason it’s important to paste the whole matter on a notepad and then paste the title in the box meant for it and then the blog into the body space meant for it.

Labels or Tags

There are also Labels or Tags as they are commonly called. These are very important in any article posted on the web. Generally, your article or blog has a unique title; then there is your name (author’s name) and of course, more labels can be used depending on the article posted.

For example, when I write a film review for Special Chabbis, my tags will be:

Film Review, Special 26, Special Chabbis, Akshay Kumar, Anupam Kher, Manoj Bajpai, Kajal Aggarwal, Jimmy Shergill, Divya Dutta, Neeraj Pandey, Viacom 18, Sundari Venkatraman, 

Ensure that all tags are separated by commas and the last one is also followed by a comma. Automatically, the labels will be listed alphabetically.

The labels are important for your blog to get picked up on Google when someone searches using different keywords. That’s the reason why I have used two different versions of the film’s name Special 26 as well as Special Chabbis. Try to cover as many suitable words as possible and make sure that you get your spellings right. That’s the way to enhance the chances of your blog getting picked up on Google Search.

Posting a picture

There is no compulsion to post a picture. But if you do it, it definitely garners the reader’s attention. If you are picking the picture from the internet, do give credit to the host website. It’s only polite.

Umpteen features to make your blog attractive

There are a number of features that can make your blog interesting and all the tools are available at the back end at the click of a button. Every feature is self explanatory and don’t hesitate to explore. Keep checking out the tools, use them and see the final product instantaneously. You can keep adding and deleting to your heart’s content.

Making your blog popular

You can post the link on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and a host of other social media networks. Make the effort and email the article link to all your contacts. Invite your friends to follow your blog.

Well, I think I have managed to cover the basics. You are welcome to get back to me for any queries via the comments form.

Happy Blogging! It’s a whole new colourful world out there.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Sharing: Becoming a Published Author

Click here to send a Digital Rose to your Valentine

Sanya is a young 22 and totally lost when she leaves home in London to holiday with the Sharmas in Mumbai. Believing herself to be in love with Arth, she finds that she is more attracted to Ansh, his twin. Watch Sanya bloom under the love and nurturing offered by Ratna Sharma, the twins’ mother and how she evolves into a confident young lady. Will she find love?

That’s for you to find out when you read my e-book named Double Jeopardy.

It’s finally happening after waiting for 13 years.

It has been my dream to become published since the year 2000 when I wrote my first romance novel. Writing was a bolt out of the blue for me as I could never string two sentences together before that. But that did not stop me from dreaming of becoming a published author the moment I finished writing my masterpiece.

I did get The Malhotra Bride published at a cost only to realise that it was a waste of effort, time and money. Well, that’s water under the bridge and I don’t want to concentrate on that any more.

Indirom is a fresh chapter and I finally have found the right platform to publish my work. The publisher has the perfect tagline – romance for the Asian soul.

I have been a fan of romance since the age of 13 and avidly read Mills & Boon as well as many historical romance books. For all that, I found that my daughter was never interested in reading western novels. The moment I penned my first novel, she read it very enthusiastically and so did some of her friends who could never relate to western characters. That’s when I realised that there was a huge market out there for romance novels with Indian characters.

But getting published was a different ballgame altogether. I had tried a number of Indian publishers as well as foreign ones – the first one beings M&B, of course. But all I can say is that my file consisting of rejection letters grew bigger and fatter.

Did that stop me from dreaming of getting published? Never! It was obviously the call of the soul as I just could not give up my dream.

Well, Indirom happened to me after 13 years, in the year 2013, in answer to my prayers. Just as I have always believed that something will turn up for me, some day.

It was a lucky day when someone contacted me via LinkedIn all thanks to my friend Nilima Kadam Mohite’s recommendation calling me ‘Indian Mills & Boon Queen’ and as they say the rest is history.

My e-book DOUBLE JEOPARDY, can be purchased on from February 17, 2013 onwards. The website will be officially launched on Valentine's Day with 14 books available for purchase.

Click Here to LIKE my author page on facebook

You may Click Here to LIKE Indirom page on facebook

You will be able to purchase my e-book Double Jeopardy and other romance novellas if you CLICK HERE

Saturday, February 2, 2013



Cast: Kamal Haasan, Rahul Bose, Nassar, Shekar Kapur, Pooja Kumar, Andrea Jeremiah,
Director: Kamal Haasan

It has been a while since I watched a film in the theatre as I find that most of them are too violent for words. I have kept away from the big screen since four months which is some kind of a record.

I was to have seen the Tamil version of this movie on the day of its release at Chennai. Well, the plan fell apart when the film was banned from the theatres. Yesterday, Kamal’s interview with Arnab Goswami was quite moving with the actor doing his best to hold back his tears. That’s when Venkat and I thought that we should watch it if and when it released. Well, it did today and we went for the evening show.

THE STORY: Nirupama (Pooja Kumar) has a doctorate in nuclear science and is married to Kathak dancer-teacher Vishwanath (Kamal Haasan). It’s a marriage of convenience for both of them as Nirupama had been keen to move to the USA to complete her PhD while Vishwanath appears to be a Transgender. Nirupama plans to ditch her husband for her boss. She hires a private detective to find something against her husband that would help her file for a divorce. The detective is killed for being in the wrong place at the wrong time and Vishwanath and Nirupama are kidnapped by terrorists. That’s where Nirupama discovers that her husband is not quite what he appears to be.

I will stop here to avoid giving out spoilers. The film belongs to the crime fiction/thriller genre.


Well, let me give the positive feedback first.

The film is not too long and runs for about 2 hours and 20 minutes. Thank God for that!
There is but one song that has been choreographed by Birju Maharaj and the 58-year-old Kamal Haasan’s Kathak performance is excellent. All other music is only in the background.
The cinematography is superb.
Editing by Mahesh Narayanan is perfect.
Rahul Bose has done quite well as the villain.

Now that I am done with all that, let me get to the minus points.

I am amazed that Kamal Haasan and his brother had the gumption to invest about a hundred crores in this film. Well, one cannot deny that it has been well-researched. But it ends abruptly, leaving the audience wondering what the hell they paid Rs. 220 for! And to think I waited four months to watch this one on the big screen!
The film is totally violent after the first couple of scenes. At the end of it all, if we had good triumphing over evil, it would have still been worth a watch. But…. ?
I can accept that there is no glamour at all as that could have taken away from the film’s main story. But the end is so lame that one wonders what one had been waiting the whole time for.
Actors like Nassar and Shekhar Kapur have been wasted with minuscule roles that have no impact.
While Kamal Haasan has acted well, he looks too old for the role of an active RAW agent. Why don’t you grow up, man?
Films like Ek Tha Tiger and Agent Vinod are drawn on similar lines. While Salman’s flick went on to mint more than 100 crores, Saif Ali Khan’s thriller did not do that well at the box office. Well, both these films are way better than Vishwaroop. They definitely had much more entertainment value. Need I say more?
It’s best that I don’t say anything about Pooja Kumar and Andrea Jeremiah. You can’t call them sidekicks nor can you call them glamourous. I wonder where that leaves them!

A sequel has been planned. Is Kamal turning senile?

VERDICT: After all the hype with the ban and tearful press conferences, the film is a damp squib.

RATING: **Shaky