It’s a techie life Metroplus

Taking a write turn

Amogha Rejeesh

Amogha Rejeesh   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

There are many techies who have a passion for languages and storytelling

And here we were thinking that the art of creative writing in Technopark was all but limited to coding, a few posts/tweets on social networking sites and the occasional blog. Clearly, that’s not the case. Technopark, it seems, is chock-full of people who like to write, as was evident when Prathidhwani, a socio-cultural organisation on campus, conducted a creative writing contest for techies. The contest for poetry, prose and essay writing in English and Malayalam saw some 250 submissions from techies across the board!

The techies themselves have a theory as to why writing is still popular, albeit latent, among their ilk. Sandeep Somasekharan, who won the English short story writing contest, says: “Perhaps it’s because the world of publishing is much more open now and there are many new writers springing up. More than writing I feel the habit of reading has been fading. Ten years ago you would see quite a few people immersed in a book. Now all that we see are people fiddling with their Smartphones. And unless you read a lot, I believe you can’t write well.”

Sandeep says that he has been writing since his primary school days. “I was terrified of watching movies on the big screen. Just so that I did not get left out when friends were discussing movies, I used to make up my own movie stories and narrate it to them. Once I entered the IT world, I started scribbling short stories in a notebook and later I started blogging within my company’s network, and started getting a lot of inputs and suggestions from fellow bloggers on how to improve my writing. That encouraged me to write more short stories.”

Meera M.S., a software developer, whose Malayalam short story and poem both won top billing at the contest, also believes that the more you read, the better you can write. “I don’t think there is a generational decline in writing, it’s only that the medium has changed. The issue with new Malayalam writing, at least, is that we still only have literary masterpieces of yore such as M.T.’s Randamoozham to look up to.”

Fellow winner Jyothish Kumar is of the same opinion. “These days, thanks to social media, the world is literally at your fingertips. Anybody who wants to write can now write and, more importantly, get their work across to a large number of people. It’s how we use the medium to our advantage that matters. I have come across exceptional stories/writing on Facebook, which many don’t realise is also creativity at its best.” Jyothish, who works as a graphic design lead, and is a bibliophile and artist too, won first prize for his Malayalam short story ‘Iruttinte Idanazhikal’, which narrates the fears and trails of a woman who travels alone, told through the viewpoint of three men.

His only lament is that he just doesn’t get enough time to indulge in creative pursuits. “I get the time to write and paint only after 11 p.m.,” he says.

Of course, that old explanation – lack of time… “That’s not true, if you are passionate about something you make the time,” says techie Musfir Mohammed, who won the first prize for essay writing in English. “I was introduced to writing by my father and I write whenever I feel like it. It’s my stress-buster.”

Not everyone is as prolific, though. Amogha Rejeesh, a senior technical writer, whose poem ‘Ray Of Hope’ won the first prize in English poetry, is revelling in the joy of writing after a long while. Her poem of compassion is inspired by the news of Vava Suresh catching an otter. “I love poetry and used to write for school and college magazines. I imagine, most of the people who submitted entries for the contest, would have already had their creative endeavours filed away on the computer somewhere. The contest was a good platform to showcase it to the world.”

Sandeep adds: ‘The Stalker’ was a story I wrote more than a year ago. More than the win, a few kind words from the judges has made me feel that I should keep writing. Apart from that, it gave me an opportunity to go through the works of a few others who seem to take time out from the daily grind to do something creative.”

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Printable version | Apr 9, 2020 8:48:10 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/its-a-techie-life-taking-a-write-turn/article6401029.ece

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