Sundeep Bhutoria

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Sunday, December 6, 2015

At the Bangalore Lit Fest

At the Bangalore Lit Fest with Madhurantakam Narendra, Kulpreet Yadav, Pramita Satpathy and  Diwakar S
December 6, 2015: I landed in Bangalore on December 2 night. The weather here is nice and welcoming. No wonder when it comes to the weather, many people draw parallels between Bengaluru and California while others choose to call it the “California of India”.
This time I checked in at the Taj Westend instead of ITC Gardenia since my main reason to be in Bangalore was to attend a wedding scheduled at this Taj property. Indian weddings continue to get bigger and fatter and there seems to be no limits to this.
Apart from the wedding, this trip to Bangalore was also to attend the Bangalore Literature Festival which ran into some rough weather with the founder director of the Festival, Vikram Sampath, quitting over his tweet on authors returning awards.
Book signing at the Lit Fest
I came to know about the whole thing on reaching Bangalore. In fact, in the whole list of authors and speakers I found only Yatindra Mishra from the world of Hindi literature as many of them backed out of the Fest due to the tweet controversy.
I was the moderator of the session "The Short and Short of It: Writing Short Stories”. There were four speakers in my panel - Kulpreet Yadav, Paramita Satpathy, Madhurantakam Narendra and Diwakar S.
I was amazed to hear when Mr Diwakar mentioned about the world's shortest short story – “The Dinosaur” - which is only one line long and written by Guatemalan writer Augusto Monterroso. It just reads “When he woke up, the dinosaur was still there.” This enigmatic short story, the shortest one ever written, has inspired many a doctoral thesis.
A renowned French author had commented that it was the best short story he had ever heard. According to Mr Diwakar, this one-line is a story bacause it spurs the readers to think and wonder.
S Diwakar has published over 30 books of short fiction, poetry, essays, translations and literary criticism. As a journalist he has served as reporter, assistant editor and editor in such newspapers and journals like Samyukta Karnataka, Mallige, Sudha, Prajavani and The Times of India. He was was a Karnataka specialist at the American Consulate in Chennai for nearly two decades.
At the sidelines of every literary sessions at the Bangalore Literature Festival was the issue of tolerance vs intolerance.
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