A.R Sara

A breezy & intense eternal teen with a zest for the here and the now

Category: Author Space

Books for all ages!

A heartwarming pic sent to me by a young-at-heart fan of A.R. Sara books. She was thrilled to find the books at Crosswords Bookstore, Bangalore.IMG-20180105-WA0088 The delightful expression on her face as she reads “Nutcat the wise” speaks for itself!

Goes to prove A.R. Sara books are for the young, old and the ageless!

Feel free to write in and send your pics with your copy/copies of A.R.Sara story book/s and favorite lines if any from the books, to arsarafables@gmail.com to be featured here! ūüôā

The books are available globally in Print and Kindle versions incase you are wondering… Here’s where you can find them on Amazon —–

https://www.amazon.com/A.R.-Sara/e/B009T38JUC

https://www.amazon.in/A.R.-Sara/e/B009T38JUC

Ofcourse the print versions are available on other online retailer sites too…just google for A.R. Sara books along with the book title you are looking for.

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Happy New Year!

Wishing Everyone a Happy New Year 2018!
May this New Year shower us all with happiness, warmth, empathy, understanding, love, health, joy, freshness, peace and success!
And here’s a special New Year wish for all the patrons of the written word…
May the new year be filled with a bountiful of diverse reads; some that may give a fresh new perspective of the reality around while others carry us away to faraway lands to acquaint us with people we have never met before and situations we have never experienced before and fill us with eclectic emotions.
May the new year see all our writings shared with the world go viral, all the books we published be well read and climb the bestseller lists and all those stories and thoughts deep within us find expression in words!

Express yourself

The next best thing you can do for yourself after diet, sleep, exercise and reading is to express yourself in words.

Yes, writing can help…

make you self-aware and poised,

articulate the feelings that cannot be voiced,

discover yourself all over again,

heal those invisible wounds and diminish the pain,

keep the blues away,

brighten your day,

prioritize your colliding thoughts,

share those unspoken after-thoughts,

bring clarity to your clouded emotions,

delay and control your reactions,

make you focused and sure,

state your views in leisure,

purge the all-consuming negativity

and nurture your creativity!

Even a sentence a day can go a long way!

Self-Publishing Support

WorkshopLatestNoPicNoContact

Launching Self-Publishing support to help writers get independently published. If you want to find out more or attend the workshop or avail the self-publishing assistance, fill out survey – https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DTYSNWT

Skype option available for workshop.

Free kindle short story

Kindle short story available for free download.
Amazon India – https://www.amazon.in/dp/B077XRMRB7
Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077XRMRB7

Self-publishing is a state of mind

This is a post that has been in the making for long. I have been often asked about the why, what and how of self-publishing. I hope the below account of my personal experience with it, will at least provide a glimpse into this phenomenon of publishing by self. One which is slowly but surely gaining the status of an accepted alternate option, if not a norm, rather than be dismissed as an unsettling exception.

I am a self-published author by personal choice. Not that I keenly explored traditional publishing or even believed that any of my books stood a chance of making it out of the slush pile, leave alone being accepted by any well known traditional publisher.

My writing and publishing journey started almost six years ago, after I decided to take a relaxing break from my successful corporate career spanning sixteen years.
Inspired by my kids and my husband I revisited my passion for penning down stories. Driven by the love, encouragement and support from family, friends and young fans I considered making the books available to a wider audience. The final deciding factor that accelerated the process was the irresistibly sweet appeal made by my husband and kids to see the books in brick and mortar book stores.

After some online R&D, I decided early-on in my journey that self-publishing was surely the way to go about realizing my goal, considering the phase of life I was in. Moreover the drive to impress my kids was immense. It propelled me to dive right into the realm of words without a second thought and into the world of publishing with a methodical approach. The tremendous emotional support from my husband and parents and encouragement from close friends and cousins fueled me further.  I began to independently publish in 2012 and there has been no looking back since.

I started with publishing the stories in kindle format before proceeding to publish print versions. After some initial hiccups and hesitation, I rolled up my sleeves and started understanding and getting hands-on with the various aspects of the self-publishing life cycle. This included forming a virtual team or tapping into my own resources or¬†filling in from my personal board of directors where needed, to cover proof-reading, editing, type-setting, formatting, illustrations, book and cover design and printing for each book followed by identifying and expanding distribution channels, promotion, marketing, branding, selling, networking.¬†This is the point when I realized that rather than remaining a smooth sailing journey it had turned into a veritable adventure. A most humbling and uplifting one. One that I didn’t mind at all. Not one bit, as I began to understand what it truly means to publish a book. What it takes to pursue dreams and to own the risk, knowing that the odds are clearly not stacked in one’s favour when it comes to publishing one’s writing. I finally began to understand the pains and tribulations from a traditional publisher’s point of view. A great plot line, excellent writing, perfect editing, a spectacular book cover, popular genre and any other embellishments, cannot guarantee a best seller. Despite all this a book can¬†sink without a ripple in a vast lake of forgotten books, taking with it all the efforts, investment and dreams. The magic ingredient that can make it a bestseller is still as elusive as can be. It made me empathize with the challenges faced by the publishing industry to keep that alternate world of stories alive at all costs.¬† A human need and intent as ancient as the stories etched and depicted on stone by the early hunter-gatherers. With the traditional reader base in the world steadily declining and being replaced with a new breed of smart phone scrolling readers, the onus lies on the writers and publishers to make a concerted effort to grow the reader base and expand and retain the readers’ attention span.

Overall it is an intense, fulfilling and ongoing personal journey and an enriching learning experience. I have managed to publish 10 titles in ebook and print versions and make them available on major online retail stores like Amazon and Flipkart, Sapna apart from book stores like select Crosswords book stores, Just Books libraries, several School libraries, at book fairs, Lit fests and select independent book stores. I started blogging independently, writing for online blogs and began to experiment with creative photography along the way.

The progress has been slow yet stable and promising. I operate on a conservative budget, balancing time, effort and investment to sustain and grow modestly and steadily rather than aim for giant leaps. I keep improvising with each new book and each new edition of my already published books.
The greatest benefit I see is that it allows me to learn and grow at my own pace, without compromising on life’s priorities.
The downsides I see are that to begin with, self-publishing obviously lacks the open public acceptance and validation that naturally comes with traditional publishing and people tend to approach a self-published book with skepticism. But I am seeing that change with each new book I publish.

It goes without saying, self-publishing demands a certain level of self-discipline, else it can turn into a wasted endeavor.

I end this post with a message to all the established as well as aspiring self-publishers out there – I believe that the ultimate idea is to hang in there, keep the dream alive and kicking, stay open to feedback and keep applying the learning that you pick up along the way. And in the process don’t forget to enjoy doing what you love to do. Write!

My Amazon Author Page: A.R.Sara Books on Amazon!

© 2017 RajaRajeshwari Nagasigamani

Overcoming writer’s challenges

Most of the consistent and voracious readers I know, either already possess a natural inclination to express their thoughts in written words or involuntarily develop it over the years. So what is it that holds them back?
Some of the most common challenges I see in the transition from a reader to a writer and realizing one’s potential as a writer, do not revolve around lack of opportunities or muses or any external stimuli. But rather around a finite set of hurdles that lie within. I have tried to outline a few that I believe are the critical ones to address to kick-start your creative engine.

    • Shedding inhibitions
      It takes courage and a sense of purpose to actually put thoughts on paper, which is akin to peeling layers off an artichoke to reveal the heart. The fear of exposing one’s thoughts to the world can be intimidating resulting in conflicting emotions and a strong awareness and acceptance of one’s vulnerabilities. It requires an acknowledgement of the presence of¬†the invisible yet formidable layers of inhibitions, prior to making an effort to shed them one at a time.
    • ¬†Handling empathy
      Yes, even a strong sense of empathy can make a writer think several times over and reconsider penning down thoughts, ideas, feelings and brooding over the choice of words. Especially avid readers, who read across genres, have a strong tendency to become overly sensitized and empathetic.
      A striking sensitivity and awareness that words can be stronger than swords, can become a deterrent. What if the words from the heart were to hurt someone. It is important to reflect and apply some logic and due diligence and ask yourself if you are ready to take ownership and responsibility for the true intent and the meaning behind the words from your inner perspective. If yes, then go ahead with sharing your writing.
      Know that, when you write from the gut, the words you string together will encompass the emotions that went into them and will be invoked and tangle with the reader’s mood, when reading them.
      You can’t control how your writing will be interpreted or perceived. The readers’ perceptions and current state of mind can color the words they read. But if everyone were to interpret your writing exactly the same way, every time, that would be like taking the flavor and zest out of food rendering it bland and predictable always.
    • Seeking validation and Acceptance
      A fear of indifference can be a strong deterrent. After having shed inhibitions to reveal a part of one’s inner self via words in a blog post, book, FB post, social media…what if the world is indifferent, or only a lack-luster response is garnered or worse…it is ridiculed and callously rejected. Now this should turn the focus on who do you really write for and how do you feel about it and why do you share it? Then the most critical query of all: Why do you write?
      Reflect on these questions and answer. Be true to yourself as you do. The answers you arrive at will help you resume your writing journey with a renewed vigor, defer it or change tracks altogether.
    • Structured vs unstructured writing
      While there are academic frameworks, guidelines on what constitutes good creative writing…be it an article or a book, there is nothing etched in stone that dictates perfect writing except for grammar. Now grammar is something you don’t want to risk compromising on, if you are serious about your writing.
      While it is important to be aware and keep learning and respecting structure, it can be counter productive and restrictive for a writer to regard guidelines as rules and get so caught-up with them that it begins to hinder one’s own unique writing style from evolving.
    • Lethargy
      Plain old laziness is another culprit that can put the breaks on your writing expedition. Writing is a solitary activity fueled by creative drive. Something that has to be inspired and indulged in and not forced. If sufficient discipline is not applied to bolster your passion, it is easy to slip into a state of ennui and comfort and begin slacking off. Shake off that lethargy with a quick walk or some other form of light exercise or change in activity.
    • An Author’s Delight – Magic formula
      Is there a magic formula to churn out commercial bestsellers or viral posts? Absolutely, there is, in my view. Simply put, the way I see it, bestsellers are the result of Writer’s Passion Matching Mass Appeal. What are the odds of this occurring? Passion cannot be nurtured or forced, it is an intrinsic energy from within. The writing style, story line, character development, genre…all these do add up but cannot assure that the book will be loved by many. It is the undefinable quality, you have no conscious control over, that finally matters and can make or break the book you write. So let passion drive you to write and let the universe conspire to match mass appeal to it rather than attempting it the other way round.

There is no clear-cut “one solution fits all writers” to address and eliminate challenges. But the path to breaking free from them lies in recognizing the challenges prior to tackling them…one step at a time.

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© 2017 RajaRajeshwari Nagasigamani

Lorkum’s Quest Trailer

Make a wish if you dare
Save a friend if you care…

Here comes the long awaited book trailer…with a little help from my kids.
All you need is a minute to watch it.
Lorkum’s Quest Trailer –¬†https://youtu.be/V0Yxx-pXoRM

Links to buy the book –
Kindle version:
Paperback:
Amazon India: amazon.in/dp/93865030
Flipkart India: bit.ly/2ouCBb2

#BookTrailer
#LorkumsQuest
#Adventure
#Thriller
#Suspense
#Mystery
#Lorkum
#Neurodiverse

A magical morning!

An amazing and fulfilling morning spent in the company of a friend and another author…an exemplary one with a staggering list of achievements, who I draw tremendous inspiration from. It is none other than award winning prolific and accomplished Children’s Author, Roopa Pai.
She is the author of the Taranauts series of novels, Sister Sister series and more recently the national bestseller “The Gita for Children”.
Her books “What if the earth stopped spinning? and 24 Other Mysteries of Science” and the recent one on Economics titled “So you want to know about Economics”, a highly acclaimed book recommended by ex-RBI governor Raghuram Rajan, further attest to her analytic bent of mind and scientific inclination which makes her one of those rare and gifted eclectic authors.
She also happens to be the first children’s author to make it to the Femina’s shortlist of Women achievers apart from being the first fantasy adventure novelist for kids, who started her career with Target magazine. Yes…The Target Magazine with a cult following.
We lost track of time as we bonded over books, chocolate, watermelon and an animated conversation about the interesting twists and turns in our writing journeys.
Sharing some selfies that helped seal the magical moment, along with some pictures of our books sitting together companionably on a shelf at a Crosswords bookstore… And ofcourse she graciously autographed a copy of “The Gita for Children” for my kids. ūüôā
Links to her books and mine –
Roopa Pai – www.amazon.in/Roopa-Pai/e/B004DWUUPG
A.R. Sara – www.amazon.in/A.R.Sara/e/B009T38JUC

#RoopaPai
#Taranauts
#SisterSister
#TheGitaforchildren
#TargetMagazine
#Whatiftheearthstoppedspinningand24otherMysteriesofScience
#Economics
#ScienceforKids
#ARSara
#RajaRajeshwari
#Pachaihara
#Nutcat
#CrookedCrow
#LorkumsQuest

Skimming through

Once I begin reading, at some point in the book I get so absorbed that reading becomes synonymous with breathing. It occurs naturally without a conscious effort. Unless a string of words pack in a meaningful punch of such intensity that I come up gasping for air and temporarily the words from the book tangle with the physical world.

I’m currently half way through a novel and a thought struck.
I am reading it with multiple interruptions in between, as can be expected in this current phase of life. Reason I am even able to take a step back and let my thoughts wander in this direction.
I begin to wonder if I am just skimming through or reading every line. I realize that while some lines I wrap my mind around, other parts I just skim through. But the same can’t be said for all books, isn’t it? Some books just compel you to dwell on every line for a slow ride and some may suck you in and toss you out in a jiffy, while the rest may alternate between the two states.

With this on my mind, I strike a conversation with my son.
“Do you skim through or read every line?”
He reluctantly lowers the Alex Rider novel, he has been reading.
“Depends on the book and the mood, mom,” he answers patiently.
I wait.
After a pause he adds “I skimmed through Percy Jackson novels,” he admits.
“Wimpy kid, I can’t miss a word,” he smiles. “A book like Wonder is in the same category. Every line I read. A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, falls somewhere in between. But depends…”

After a pause he adds, “Some books I skim through and then go back and read line by line.”

I wait for a beat as I process what he has said.

“Which category do my books fall in?” I ask slowly, unable to hold back the question that rages on my mind now.

“Mom…” he stalls.

I realize I am holding my breath.
Is that a grimace on my son’s face, I wonder.
“Your books don’t fall into the genre I generally read.” He shrugs lightly.
Is that supposed to be a trick answer?
“Mom, would you stop doing that with your eyebrows! You look funny,” he says with a grin, shaking his head. Before I could respond he returns his attention to the book and raises it to cover most of his face.
As I’m contemplating on how to win my son over with my next book, I hear hurried footsteps.
“Every word, every line I read, mom!” Pipes up my younger one as she storms in with a book of mine in her hands.

“Every word, every line I have heard, mom! When do you publish a book without first reading it out aloud to us?!” quips my son from behind his novel.
I sigh with bittersweet relief.

So what are you currently reading and are you skimming through, reading every line or a bit of both?

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