Behind Time's Lost Atlas
Sometime in the month of February , I came across a very interesting contest on my Facebook feeds. The contest was being held by Half Baked Beans Publishing where they were looking at newbie authors to get published with them. They would be selecting people and mentoring them to publish their work. The criteria – an introduction of yourself or your story in the most innovative manner and those ideas would win. The last date for submission was 8th March.
Like all the other contests I noted it down in my diary and conveniently forgot about it. As the day kept coming closer the word “innovative” and “mentoring” intrigued me more and more. I pushed myself a lot to attempt something really out of the box but thanks to my limited brains I could not. Dejected with everything else on the 7th March 2013 I finally managed to send whatever little I could make in a powerpoint presentation and I forgot about it. I knew in today’s times when animation, digital art, video making etc etc were something anyone could manage my ppt would be lost in the crowd standing no chance to even be noticed.
Needless to say I was surprised when I received a mail from them asking me if I had any written samples of stories to show them. I shared the links of some of my best stories (according to me) on my blog at that time trying to breathe normally. A few more email exchanges and I was selected for the mentorship programme. No sooner was I introduced to Harsh Agarwal. Well, yes I googled him too. My first interaction and I was like Wow…. This guy knows what he talks. I still remember the first time he discussed Time’s Lost Atlas with me and I was literally bowled over by its entire unique concept. I kept pinching myself when he told me he wants me to write for it.
I somehow was not too comfortable with it, for I had never written pure fiction till them. All the stories I wrote on my blog had little bit of reality mixed with fiction in them making it easier for me to bring out the right emotions. When I shared my fears with Harsh his first reaction was “ To become a writer you need to write pure fiction. So if that is your dream you will be able to do this!”
I started working on it. Throughout the whole process Harsh guided me like a teacher in a school. He shared how he created characters, how he made the plot, how to connect the missing dots, add a zing to the story, grab the reader’s attention… and all those nuances which perhaps I would have never noticed till now. I asked him so many questions that one day I was sure he was going to kick me out of this whole thing but all the while he was extremely patient with me. Not once did he doubt my capabilities. On the contrary when I doubted them he would chide me. He read all the versions with lot of patience word by word and gave me feedback on each of the minutest changes I made. It helped a lot as he praised also and not only criticized. That built up the whole energy to keep it going till the end when finally I saw my story and to put it simply I was proud of it!
Writing for Time's Lost Atlas has been a wonderful experience as it showed me not only my minuses it highlighted my pluses helping me bring them out more strongly. I worked on my minuses and am still working, though today my confidence is much higher than that day. And yes I can easily say the Grapevine Victory would not have been possible without this. This surely would not have been possible without Harsh and of course Half Baked Beans Publishing who took this initiative of giving chance to complete fresh authors to write for them.
For Harsh Time's Lost Atlas is a dream and by asking us all 11 authors to work on it he actually made us all a part of that dream which is truly commendable! Sharing a part of your dream is a like sharing your happiness, it just multiplies.And the results are for all of you to see.
P.S: Do like the page of this book HERE to stay tuned to all its news and updates