& occasionally about other things, too...

Tuesday, January 01, 2019

Belief in Marathi

Cover of Belief
Welcome to 2019.

This blog enters its second decade. It’s a bit disconcerting that I’ve continued to write here for a decade and want to continue doing so. 

Except for being married to Mahrukh for 23 years, I haven’t done anything for quite as long.

None of my jobs have lasted for a decade, and have always ended for good reasons. A former colleague compared me to dust, because, as he put it, “I take time to settle down.” 

He was wrong. I’m not like dust. Dust settles eventually. I don’t think I can ever settle down.

So, as I said, it’s a bit unsettling to realise that I’ve been at it on this blog, posting about all things that are of interest to me, over the last decade.

Here are some reasons why started blogging.

  • To let people (potential employers) in Canada know that I could write in English
  • To reacquaint myself with regular writing – something that I’d not done in many years, as I abandoned journalism as a vocation.
Back Cover

  • To create a platform to write about books, authors, and book events. I was quite clear in my mind about taking writing more seriously in Toronto than I’d ever done in Bombay.

Despite years of writing, I cannot claim to be a proficient writer, but despite that rather obvious shortcoming, blogging is a gratifying experience. 

One frees up time from the burdens of the world to engage with one’s thoughts and turn them into words. 

Blogging in Canada led to an opportunity to become a columnist with the Canadian Immigrant (between 2010 to 2014).

I also began writing my first fiction. I struggled with the manuscript for many years and am thankful to the guidance I got from many friends and well-wishers in my journey to become a published novelist.

Belief, my novel, was published in 2016 by Mawenzi House Publishers, the Toronto-based prestigious publishing house that MG Vassanji and Nurjehan Aziz launched nearly four decades ago to create a platform for Canadian multicultural writing.

My friend Kumar Ketkar (who is now a Member of the Indian Parliament's Upper House) and Sharada Sathe were in the USA when the book was published. Kumar insisted that I send him a copy immediately. To my pleasant surprise, Sharada decided to translate Belief into Marathi.

Sharada (second from left) when Kumar and Sharada were in Toronto in 2015.
This photograph is of a get together of friends in their honour
Although diminutive in appearance, Sharada Sathe is a formidable woman. She is one of the founding members of the Stree Mukti Sanghatana and continues to serve as the organisation’s secretary.

Over the last decade or so, Sharada has begun to translate works from English into Marathi. Her translations include works by such eminent personalities as Amartya Sen, Somnath Chatterjee, Mohit Sen, Sam Pitroda. Her most recent translations include Ramchandra Guha’s India After Gandhi and Makers of Modern India.

Sharada completed the translation of Belief in a record time and the book was to be published in 2017 by Manovikas Prakashan in Pune. But, there was some hitch and the publishing was delayed. I'd given up hope of the book actually being published anytime soon.

And then suddenly last week, as 2018 was coming to a close, I got an email from Kumar and Sharada informing me that the book is ready and will be hitting bookstores in January 2019.

Having lived for 46 years in Bombay, Marathi is an integral part of my life. I cannot write in the language, but I read it and speak it with some degree of fluency. It is, indeed, my honour and a privilege that such an eminent personality as Sharada Sathe has translated my novel into Marathi. 

No comments:

Post a Comment