Satish shut down the operating system, closed the notebook and went for lunch.
“Why do you take so much time to come when you are called? The food has been arranged on the table and it gets cold by the time you start eating. What is the use of serving hot food?” mother complained.
“Aai, I wanted to complete writing one paragraph of my new story. If I break in between, the link is lost. And then it is very difficult to continue with the flow of the story.”
“Oh! Great story writer. How many stories you have written so far ! Just writing stories is not enough. It must be meaningful. It must be accepted by the literary world. Anyway. Now I have warmed the food again. So please finish your lunch first.
What time did you sleep last night? I saw lights on in your room when I got up for water at around two o’clock. What were you doing? Writing only?” mother put a question to Satish.
“Yes, Aai. I got a brilliant idea last night and I wanted to put it down immediately.”
“Satish, you have given up Engineering studies to pursue your hobby of writing short stories. You want to make a career in writing. Fine. But what have you achieved during last one year? So many stories you have written. Each friend of yours whenever he or she visits you, you force upon them your new stories. Sometimes they genuinely give you their feedback. But many times they do not find them interesting. Satish, tell me. How many stories have you submitted to different publication houses so far? None of them ever got accepted. Every time you submit your story, you are in high spirits. You are so sure that the new story would be published. Your mood is sustained till you receive a message from publishing house ‘this time your story is unsuccessful.’” Mother kept a glass of water near Satish.
“No. I don’t want to discourage you. But I am putting facts in front of you. You take so much efforts to write a story. So many times you rewrite them. You make your friends read them. Discuss with them. Make some changes if you find it necessary. And when you send them to publishing houses, they send you a message of rejection. I feel you are wasting your energy. It will be better if you take up a job.”
Satish was disappointed that his mother who supported him with his ideas, appreciated his creativity so long, had lost her patience.
“But this time I have a very brilliant idea. I am sure nobody has written such a marvelous story so far. Aai, this will be a story appreciated by young and old, poor and rich. Everybody. It will draw attention of one and all. You will see the result very soon.”
“Satish, I hope so. You must get recognition soon.”
Satish finished his lunch quickly. Rushed to his study room. Opened the laptop and started typing his ideas.
In the evening, Latika, his good friend came to his house. She was close to him since their school days. She was working in a multi-national firm as an executive. She appreciated Satish’s efforts. She had faith in his creative ability. She was usually the first person to whom Satish would show his work.
As expected, Latika was given new story to read. “This is going to topple the literary world. Latika, I want you to read this story carefully and give me your feedback honestly.” Satish pulled one chair near the laptop and opened the file to enable her to read his new creation.
“Satish, Latika has just entered the house. Let her have some water. I will make tea for her. Do not just embarrass her by making her read your new story.” Mother looked at Latika and tried to drag her into the kitchen. But Latika ignored mother and started reading the story. Satish was watching her face for the reaction. As she went on reading, Satish was getting more anxious about her feedback. Slowly Latika’s face started brightening up. Satish could not hold his patience. He started looking out of the window to hide eager expressions on his face. After few minutes of reading, Latika turned towards Satish. “Wonderful , Satish. This is too good. Just a few suggestions. Otherwise the story is absolutely fascinating. It smoothly glides the reader till the end and finally a superb climax. Very nice. I would rate this as your finest work so far. Make the changes and send it to the publisher. They can not reject this one.”
Mother came with the tea for three of them.
“Aai, Have you read this story?” Latika asked mother while picking up her cup of tea.
“No. He does not believe us. He needs some friends like you to give feedback.” Mother remarked smilingly.
“But Aai, this is really an extra-ordinary piece of work. Just superb. Satish says this is going to create waves in literary world.” Latika said while sipping tea.
“Satish always feels that everything he writes is outstanding. But what he thinks and what the experts think do not coincide. Whatever he has written so far was disapproved by the publishers. Why do you think this time it is going to be different?” mother posed a question to Latika. Of course, she did not have any answer to this.
“You will come to know very soon. I really feel this is a great work.”
Satish was little embarrassed to hear both good and bad about his literary skills.
After making the suggested changes, Satish sent his story to one of the publishers. As the days passed by Satish was getting impatient waiting for the mail for selection of his story for publication. Two weeks passed. Satish was losing his nerves. No communication was received.
And after three weeks a mail came. That was an intimation of disapproval. Satish was shattered. His mother was literally in tears. When Latika came to know about denial of this story, she rushed immediately to Satish and tried to console him. Latika said, “There must be some mistake on part of publisher. This certainly deserves selection. May be the number of stories to be selected was already over. Unfortunately, our story only had to go out. ”
“Latika, I told you, however good we might find this story, it does not match with publisher’s thinking. So inevitable was to happen-the non acceptance.” Mother said in a dejected tone. “I feel, Satish should stop writing stories. That does not seem to be his cup of tea.” And tears flowed down mother’s eyes.
Latika said “Satish, Don’t feel bad. Anyway, we will send this story to another publisher. Let us try our luck there.”
Latika selected another publisher and made Satish send his story there. Again the waiting for the communication from the publisher was making Satish, Latika and the mother very uneasy. As the days were passing, the hopes were dying rapidly.
And the mail came to Satish’s inbox. That was a congratulatory letter for selection of his story for publication. Satish was on cloud nine. Mother and Latika were extremely happy.
Mother thanked God and offered naivaidyam to him.
After a week Satish received yet another stunning letter. Another publisher had shown interest in his other short stories stating that his published short story had received raving reviews. It was in great demand. So they wanted to offer him a big amount to have rights for publishing all of his short stories in the form of a book. Some news channels gave news to the world about the phenomenal success of the short story writer. Satish had received the deserved recognition. He was a celebrity then.