Hot New Trend of The Books Business: Adult Coloring Books

Amazing it may seem, but adults are now returning to colors and creative zeal – and in a big way.

As per Wall Street Journal’s latest assessment, adult coloring books have occupied 8 out of top 20 book list on Amazon, and the fever is refusing to die d0wn.

A a shy 32-year-old illustrator, Johanna Basford’s new book is currently one of the top 20 books under this category. Johanna stays in Scotland, and she used to draw pictures for vodka bottles and book covers, before strikign a deal with a book publisher and the rest is history.

Her coloring books titled “Secret Garden” and “Enchanted Forest” were published by Laurence King Publishing Ltd., and are ranked among 2015’s top 20 best-selling books in the U.S., as per Nielsen BookScan.

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She has said she likes to “hide little curiosities within each illustration.”

Her newest titled is named “Lost Ocean”, published by Penguin Books in October, which is an imprint of Penguin Random House.

Michael O’Mara Books Ltd., a British publisher, said, “A staffer said how embarrassed she was to see her mother coloring and getting enormous enjoyment. We thought, ‘Why not have a stab producing a coloring book aimed at adults?’ ” And the result was  “The Creative Colouring Book for Grown-Ups,” which was published in the U.K. in May 2012, boasting high-grade paper and sophisticated illustrations.

Mr. O’Mara said, “I’m in love with words and I love literature. Now I’m known as the guy who publishes books with no words.”

Carina Guiterman, an assistant editor said,  “A lot of people think that’s where this will go. We haven’t seen the end of creative expression.”

 

 

Aarya Babbar Creates World’s First ScreeNovel: My Fiancee, Me & #IFU**EDUP (review)

Aarya Babbar, popular Bollywood and Punjabi actor, whose recent Big Boss performance created some ripples across the Indian television world, has authored world’s first screenovel: My Fiancee, Me & #IFU**EDUP.

And he almost nails it by creating a new benchmark.

Screenovel, a term which is a combination of screenplay and novel, hasn’t been attempted before and Aarya decided to make it actually happen. The language and the comprehension used in this novel is derived from the quick-n-fast SMS and Internet Messenger based lingo used by youngsters today.

There are no paragraphs which usually exist in literature and prose; and unlike any conventional novel, the author doesn’t waste time describing the scene and ambiance. There is a special ‘Auto Mode Writer’ within the novel, which takes the story forward at breakneck speed, and forces the reader to be on the edge, always.

World's first screenovel: My Fiancee, Me & #IFU**EDUP

Aarya’s debut novel, or rather screenovel can be described as an unconventional and unorthodox style of expressing an urban romantic story, in the form of a movie screenplay. The pivot of this book is the fuck-ups which happen with the protagonist, knowingly or unknowingly and how he manages to make them correct, only to be fucked-up again.

The book revolves around Rushabh Shah, son of a wealthy Gujarati diamond merchant based in Mumbai. He is a confused soul: he can’t even decide which chair to sit on inside a restaurant. He is love with Mehak, a childhood friend and decides to marry her. But then, does he really marry her?

The entry of Dolly spices up the proceedings; as Rushabh finds himself drawn towards her, forgetting all about his commitment with Mehak. His friend Mukul complicates his life even more, and his dad, dad’s girl-friend and mom, all contribute to more fuck-ups and more drama.

The story swiftly shifts from Mumbai to Thailand, back to Mumbai, to Goa and takes the reader on a whirlwind tour of Rushabh’s crazy fuckups and his wit and doubts. And love.

I asked my colleague Ritancia, who is an avid reader of rom-com and contemporary English novels about this effort from Aarya, and as per her, teenagers will immensely enjoy this book, but has doubts regarding more serious readers. She suggests that the story could have been stronger if the author decided to induce more natural humor, compared to those which are already doing the rounds of WhatsApp and Facebook.

None the less, she congratulates Aarya for his first novel, and wishes him best of luck.

She specially mentions to add: “Jai Shree Krishna”.

My view: There are some novelists and writers who are not too pleased with the format and language used in this novel. As per them, such English will take away young readers from serious reading, and induce laziness and mediocrity. My suggestion to them: You are not the judge, you cannot decide what youngsters want to read. Art always evolves, and keep on transforming.

Let the readers decide!

My Fiancee, Me & #IFU**EDUP has been published by Penguin Metro Reads, and you can purchase it from Flipkart here.

 

Woes of NaNoWriMo Writers: Café Coffee Day Almost Threw Us Out From Their Outlet

Synopsis: Café Coffee Day service staff attempted to shoo us away from their outlet in Connaught Place, because ‘meetings are not allowed here’. We didn’t leave, and here is the story.

A small group of aspiring novelists from New Delhi, who are attempting NaNoWriMo challenge this year, made a harmless little plan this Sunday: Visit Café Coffee Day outlet and discuss books, characters and conflicts while sipping coffee and crunching cookies.

We had plans of writing there, collective writing session. How excited I was!

I had just seated myself in the rather cozy ambiance of CCD situated in Block A of Connaught Place in New Delhi on the wonderful afternoon of Sunday. Although the meetup was meant to be low-key affair, only three had turned up, including me.

I was discussing about the possibilities of an Operating System falling in love with a human being, and the subsequent flow of emotions, when suddenly one of the CCD service staff interrupted us. He said something, which I didn’t hear because I was too engrossed in the insane idea.

Assuming that he is asking us for orders (the small outlet was filling up fast), I ask for a cup of hot coffee. I always forget the God damn names of coffee there.

“No sir, we want you guys to leave CCD”

“What?”

“Why!”

I felt as if we were making plans to blow up the Parliament, and have been caught red handed in the middle.

Questions everywhere. We were shocked for a second, convinced that there has been some misunderstanding.

He calmly clarified, “Sir, meetings are not allowed here. We don’t allow people to organize meetups here.”

Opposite us, a group of white ladies were having a loud animated conversation and having coffee. One among us pointed, “See, they are also meeting, right.”

“No, they are friends. You are conducting a business meeting”, he accused us, pointing towards our opened laptops and notebooks and books.

“We are also friends!” We all said together.

Yes, Facebook friends, who were just strangers who had never met before. We were writer friends, bonded by a community called NaNoWriMo. We were intellectual friends, we spent hours together on Facebook talking about books and words.

Damn, we three had collectively written more than 100,000 published words. Didn’t he realize that?

“We don’t allow work over here. There is a notice outside?”

Cafe Coffee Day Cannaught Place New Delhi
The so called notice which we read after coming out

We closed the laptops and stared towards him. By including the word ‘notice’ he had no doubt introduced a tangible entity into the whole drama. As if a kind of authority has just been wielded upon that guy, who, now has absolute power to do anything he deemed correct.

But the problem was, none of us had read any damn notice outside.

He continued ranting about laptops and work and business meetings and stuff. I was now almost angry, but more than that, I was hurt.

The story, the ideas, the conflicts, the characters.. something which I was so excited about 3 minutes before, were now killed. Exciting art, which could have been created, was ruthlessly murdered, live.

“Can you give us in written?”

“Excuse me sir?”

I repeated, elaborating this time, “Can you write to us, stating that CCD is shoving three writers out of their outlet, as they consider that we are indulging in illegal activity?

We are writers you see, we need content for our blogs, Facebook and Twitter accounts. And I am sure that this incident will be repeated to your big bosses sitting in large offices.”

This softened him a bit. After we reassured that there won’t be any more ‘participants’ in this ‘business meeting’, he left us on our own.

Yes, he didn’t (or say, couldn’t) get us out of their premises, although he did try hard. But the whole incident did left a sour taste in our mouths, something which their ‘rich’ ‘aromatic’ coffee with cream and chocolate couldn’t rectify.

We felt humiliated, embarrassed and most importantly, the feel and the excitement of writing collectively was killed. After he left, we did made most of the time by talking about writing and books, but we never wrote a single word.

This stupid evacuation drama killed the art.

In case you visit that CCD outlet in future, please be warned. There is a notice sticking outside, which can make your day bad to worse. Beware.

About Me: I am a Writer, who is attempting to write a novel in 30 days this November under the NaNoWriMo challenge. You can track my progress here. Feel free to connect with me on Facebook or Tweet me your love here. I can be instantly reached at hello@mohulghosh.com