Reflections on creating garments that replicate the sea breeze, discussions on how to ‘cook up a storm’, and resolving to break away from stereotypes of women in cinema — the sessions on day two of the The Hindu Lit for Life festival fell into place to suit the city’s weather blues on Sunday — an unusually breezy morning, a reticent sunny afternoon, and a charged, hopeful evening sky.

The discussions, instead of tapering down towards the end, provided a platform for questions that ranged from the obscure yet profound, to the mundane yet pertinent.

As the lights dimmed inside the Sir Mutha Venkatasubba Rao Auditorium, Lady Andal School in the morning, fashion designer Wendell Rodricks, took the audience through some landmark photographs in his career that have found place in his book ‘The Green Room’.

The designer recalled his journey, from being perceived as the maker of ‘strange clothes with no embroidery’ to rising to save local weaves like the Goa’s humble Kunbi saree, and seeing his clothes “everywhere in Düsseldorf”, in his first tryst abroad.

At the end of ‘Pop friction’, a session featuring bestselling authors Sidin Vadukut, Jugal Mody, and Ravinder Shah, anchored by journalist and blogger Lalitha Iyer, what emerged from the engaging discussion interspersed with raucous laughter, was the economics of writing. When asked by a member of the audience, the inevitable question on the distinction between ‘literary’ fiction and ‘popular’ fiction, the authors, almost in a unified voice, called it ‘meaningless’.

At the end of the day, it is all about the art of storytelling, reiterated, authors Timeri. N. Murari, Mridula Koshy and Anosh Irani, in the session on ‘The art of the tale: Storytellers at work’. As Ms. Koshy and Mr. Irani read excerpts from their books, ‘Not only the things that have happened’ and ‘The cripple and his talismans’, the world of Annakutty, the mother who relinquishes her four-year-old son, and the story of a boy in search of his arm came alive with a flourish.

When asked by a member of the audience about the genesis of the idea, Mr. Irani said that the idea is not to analyse your imagination.

Sponsors & Partners:

The Hindu Lit for Life is presented by VGN and powered by VIT University.

Associate Sponsors: Shriram Chits

Official Car Partner: Volvo

Bookstore Partner: Landmark

Hospitality Partner: The Leela Palace, Chennai

Event Partner: Aura

Radio Partner: Chennai Live

More In: Books | Chennai | News | Arts | Books