Long back, I had written a silly rhyming story / poem for my daughter Adya called “Elaine and the Bug-eyed Bugaboo“. It was different from all that I had written before and I had a whale of a time writing it. Since last year, Devaki Neogi has been adapting it into a kid’s book that we hope to publish as an interactive app on the iPad once it’s done. I’m really impressed by all that Devaki has been able to do with the source material and breathe life into it. If we have a good response to this, I plan on expanding the series into a bigger narrative called “Elaine of Blueberry Lane“.
The first story is about a little girl and her invisible friend who along with her dog rescue the bugs of the meadow from an evil tyrant.
Now, Saumin’s visual storytelling (having worked with him on a bunch of projects) is perhaps amongst the best I have seen. So for a change, rather than working from a “Script”, he free-styled some sketeches/roughs with a basic story idea in mind. Our goal was to use some iconic Frazetta imagery, in a story reminiscent of those that he provided covers for. I then took a crack at tightening the story and the images into a 11 page script with dialogue and Saumin came back with astounding pencils for it. The pieces are now lettered and ready. Once Saumin finishes inking and coloring them, we’ll post it on the web.
But while we wait for that, pictured above is a rough lettered version of the cover for your to drool over. 🙂 Hope you like it (as much as we did creating it).
As a story AHFT is very different from anything I’ve done so far. It’s the story of Anwesh Bannerjee, a student activist in the ’70s who along with his “comrades” tried to blow up a bridge to protest against the “Bourgeoisie”-controlled government and ended up accidentally killing an Indian Railways worker who was on duty. Haunted by this guilt, Anwesh surrendered and the court sentenced him to Life imprisonment. Now after more than four decades he is set free and sets about finding the last surviving kin of his victim to apologize.
The story is set against the backdrop of Modern India well on its way to becoming America Light and is represented in the story by Anwesh’s nephew Manu, a 16 year old living in an ideological void populated only by the materialistic swarm of cell phones and iPod’s.
This is the story of Anwesh’s quest for redemption. This is the story of Manu’s unwitting search for an ideological anchor. This too is the story of an unusual friendship between a sixty year old and a sixteen year old, both adrift in the churning ocean that is India today, itself searching for an identity.
About A Heaven for Trishanku
A Heaven for Trishanku (AHFT) is written by Saurav Mohapatra (DEVI, SADHU, MUMBAI MACGUFFIN, INDIA AUTHENTIC, JIMMY ZHINGCHAK, PHANTOM CHRONICLES) and drawn by R. Manikandan (SADHU, KSHATRIYA : BLADE FO THE WARRIOR).
I decided to unleash my nerd-ery to try and code a new wordpress template for Mumbai Confidential website. So read up a few resources on the web and one night’s coding binge got the new theme (aptly called “Mumbai Confidential Custom 1“) up and running.
Lately I have been experimenting with a minimal black and white style for hardboiled crime novels. As befits my limited artistic talent, I have been working off of photo references. Here are some of the pieces I have done in recent times.
So last night while waiting for someone I had a meeting with to show up, I decided to doodle and chose to try my hand at drawing a very hard boiled Humphrey Bogart 🙂 Here’s the piece with one of my favorite bogie lines from Cassablance. Done with the mouse and GIMP
By the time it was finished, my fingers were hurting like hell. So I kinda skimped on the ciggie smoke. Bogie was the inspiration for a hard-boiled Vampire story that I wrote for “The Harrow” sometime back called A DEATH BY ANY OTHER DAME.
Well, it’s been a long time since my last post. Just been busy. Not too many gigs to speak of. Most in progress are stuck with artists. One interesting bit though, just now putting finishing touches on a short story commisioned for an anthology based ona favorite character of mine. Will post more details as soon as I’m allowed to.
In other news, got my San Diego reservations done. Looking forward to it.