Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Anjali - Don't Say Anything

So Anjali decided to write a story. She has been kicked with the idea and when she has the time she curls up with her book and writes it down. When she zeroed down on her plot she discussed it with me and I listened. Then she wrote a chapter and wanted to show it to me.

Pic Satish Nargundkar

'Read it,' she said, her eyes shining.
I took it from her knowing exactly how it feels when you put your creation in someone's hands.
Then she did something very smart.

'But don't say anything,' she said.
I nodded. Makes sense. Even a 'maybe you could' will mess it up.

'Don't even say 'good',' she said. 'Just read it and give it back. That's all.'
I nodded and read it with a straight face. Then I handed it back to her following her instructions.

'You read it too slowly,' she said. 'You normally read it faster.'
I told her that some prose needs to be read carefully because it is tight.
'Ok,' she said.

I remember the many times when I would show something I'd written to someone and they would just trash it, or say something that would make me feel bad. Or even the idea of not even wanting a 'good' - as Timothy Gallwey says in his book 'The Inner Game of Tennis' - even a simple 'good distracts the person from executing well.

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