Saturday, August 7, 2021

Dream Big. Work Hard. Be Real. Trust yourself. Persevere.

This sculpture is called Seattle Cloud Cover and the artist is Teresita Fernandez. 

"much like the sensation of walking on a moving escalator, the 'sculpture' is in fact a series of unfolding, continuously shifting views that are activated by your passage as you cross the walkway, propelled and animated by the rumbling energy of the trains below..."


I was 15 when I found out that Ruskin Bond's first novel, 'A room on the roof' was published when he was 17 years old. 

Being a true believer of dreams, I dreamt I'd be publishing my first book by the time I was 19. Life at home had been unusually challenging. So, I gave myself an extra 2 years to follow in the footsteps of my literary hero. 

The year I turned 19, my life became an upside-down pineapple cake, stuck to the sides of the baking tray. The only option for survival was to scrape out a living: one day, one nudge at a time. Every time the effort seemed unsurmountable,  the sweet and tangy promise of what lay at the bottom of the pan would entice me to carry on and I did. A few years of struggle later, I  managed to taste the spoils of a secure job, enough money to afford food and rent and even fell in love. It all happened at the same time. I got married, became a mother, moved cities and countries and somehow got lost in the mundane with such abandon and passion that my dream of writing and publishing lay forgotten like a recipe gone out of fashion and use.

'And all the seasons in between' was first published in May 2021: thanks to @Blogchatter's E-Book Carnival.

My dream became my reality more than three decades later.

Then more magic illuminated my world.

Ukiyoto Publishing, an international traditional publishing house, contacted me via Instagram and expressed their interest in my book. 

Anyone who knows me knows what this message must've meant to me. 

I replied enthusiastically. They needed a synopsis of the book, their next message said. I was about to get on a flight to Seattle, my first travel after 17 months, when I read that.

A few days later, I was reading a congratulatory mail from them informing me that they'd be going ahead with publishing my book!

So, my dear readers, all I'd like to share today (apart from the links to the book, of course) is that Dream Big. Work Hard. Be Real. Trust yourself. Persevere.

Magic happens.

I came across 'Seattle Cloud Cover' and the words (of the artist) on my recent visit. And even though the artist is referring to the landscape, it struck me that this sculpture was a metaphor for life. We move through our days with shifting views, circumstances and sometimes discover, re-discover our blurred truths, realise our old, forgotten dreams, dream up new ones and all this happens while the throttle of life rumbles on-- to its own rhythm. 

I'm sharing all the links for the book here. It's available in paperback, hardcover and on Kindle.  

If you've read it already (on Blogchatter) then, please leave your review on the sites above. Your reviews will help the book to be seen and picked by new readers.

For those who haven't read the early reviews of the book, you can read them here: 

Now that the trip to Seattle is over and the book is truly born, I hope to be more present on my blog. After all, this is where my writing journey re-started after a gap of two decades.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend.


  1. Hari OM
    So delighted to see you blog again! Here's to more... I have happily submitted review on big A.

    I am a wondering why you didn't just use A's own KDP route for publishing there? Ukiyoto may look legit but at the very least it is one of the new hybrid publishers (actual publishing houses seeking to enter the self-publishing market... so should be traceable as such). Their address appears to be in Toronto, Canada, but only 'online appts' and the phone number provided is for Oman, not-Canada. I wonder what you felt was beneficial paying their "production rates" over those of KDP? Forgive my concern - whilst I could not pin down proof of U being one of the multifarious scam publishers, it's interesting that my b******t detector has been buzzing.

    Are you aware of ALLi? Worth a visit for building publishing know how and building further confidence. It is wonderful that you are getting your dream to realisation at long last. You are are off to a great start and it can only grow from here! YAM xx

    1. Thank you so much for the review on big A.

      So, to answer your question: I didn't think I had enough knowhow to use big A's KDP route with my first book. Also, U's reach (at least on their website) looked good enough to me. My reasoning was that as the "production rates" were nil (unless one buys into their promotional packages) and I'd have a book in my arsenal without spending too much time on learning and researching ways to promote it--this would be a good way to 'learn the tricks of the trade' for book number 2 (which is ready in its structural form).

      I'm not aware of ALLi. Will check it out now.

      I can't thank you enough for taking the time to offer your point of view. It feels like an older sibling has my back:) Love you. Sending you big hugs to express my gratitude. Gosh! To find souls like you has been the best 'benefit' of this writing journey. And, I'm not just saying it. I mean it.

      p.s. In my dreamy world, I wish I didn't have to do anything but read and write. So, I guess this route suited my lazy ways;)

  2. That is exciting news! I really enjoyed your book and will be happy to put the review on Amazon. I have the biggest smile for you right now!

    1. Yay! Thank you Steph. To receive your review would be an honour.
      Smiling with you.

    2. Thank you for writing a review for the book Steph. I truly appreciate it. Big hugs of gratitude. :)

  3. Dear Arti, so glad to see your dreams turn real. Every step is a learning experience and you are sure to reach higher levels as you go forward. Wish you the very best.
    I have bookmarked this post and I will find time to read your book.

    1. Thank you so much Pradeep.

      I hope you've been well.

  4. Without the fear of sounding cliché, may I say that our stories align so so much. From wanting to be a theatre artist to an author to being stuck in the mundane. I've seen it all. While I'm yet to see the day when I shall have a book out there, I am so happy for you Arti. And you've captured the essence of this moment of your life beautifully in your words. May the book go places. This is just the beginning.

    1. Thank you Sonia.

      Are we kindred spirits or soul sisters or both perhaps;)

      I'll paraphrase what Deborah wrote as a comment on one of my posts once: Let the universe know you're ready for the book and it'll happen.

      And knowing you, it'll probably be a Penguin publication:) I'm saying this as a compliment to your writing, not belittling other publishers.

      Big Hugs. xx

  5. How exciting, Arti! I am tingling with happiness for your success and can imagine how overjoyed you were to hear from Ukiyoto Publishing and to have them follow through to publishing your book. All thanks to following your dream and working hard.

    1. Thank you Gail. Thank you for sharing your tingles here for they bring a wide grin to this 'new' author's heart.

    2. Dear Gail, I read your glowing review a few minutes ago. O! I'm tingling all over. Thank you dear friend. Thank you. xx

  6. I enjoyed reading your post, and your good news, how exciting! I left a message earlier too but that somehow disappeared! Sonia Dogra had suggested I look into your writing, And she was right, it is amazing!

    1. Thank you Neera. I'm so glad you visited my blog and that you enjoyed your visit:)
      Being recommended by Sonia feels very special.


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