The times may change, but certain things do not. Or, so is the impression that could be gathered from the reading preferences of the participants of a workshop that concluded at Ernakulam Public Library on Sunday.
For the majority of the participants of this workshop on creative writing and filmmaking, M.T. Vasudevan Nair still remains the most beloved author. Vaikom Mohammed Basheer and S.K. Pottekkat also remain popular among the 35 participants.
In English, it seems a good number prefer William Shakespeare, while one, perhaps the youngest, has J.K. Rowling as the most preferred writer.
Then there is Arundhathi Roy. There is one fan of Kuttikrishna Marar, the reputed literary critic of Malayalam, and another one for Osho.
The seven-day-long workshop, with C.S. Venkiteswaran, director, School of Media Studies, as camp director, was started off on last Monday, inaugurated by short story writer T. Padmanabhan.
Delivering the inaugural address, Padmanabhan had reminded the aspiring writers that language was the most important factor of all kinds of creative writing.
World of poetry
On the second day, poet Satchidanandan gave an introduction to world poetry. He told the participants that while understanding tradition was important, true creativity meant recreating the existing experiences. Writers should have the ability to recreate, which is quite different from repetition.
C.V. Balakrishnan, writer, delineated the difference between literary writing and writing for a visual medium like film. All literature cannot be made into films, he pointed out. Writing for a film script calls for a different kind of craft, he said.
Answering a question whether cinema was an art of the director, he said that cinema was indeed the art of the director, but the director should know about many forms of expression.
Actors Cuckoo Parameswaran and Murali Menon also addressed the participants, speaking on various aspects of theatre and acting.
Murali pointed out that Kerala lacked good performance spaces as such.
Cuckoo said the colour of the skin still formed a big issue as far as the Indian film industry was concerned.
Writers Kalpetta Narayanan, V.M. Girija, K.R. Meera, and Ramachandran and artists Jyothilal and Lekha Venugopal Vyloppilly also spoke. Filmmakers K.G. George, Sibi Malayil and P.F. Mathews also participated in the camp.