From scribbles to novella – Journey of a 12 year old budding author

I am sure we miss the gorgeous and sunny childhood days in the mad rush that’s taken all over us. Today, let’s just celebrate the child in us. A happy children’s day to all ! 
How I wish I could be a child again…

Spreading our love and sparkle with a young, twelve year old ‘Star Author: Yamini Prashanth, talks about her first book ‘Mishti’. 
Let’s read about her journey from ‘scribbles to a novella’.

Hi! I am Yamini Prashanth. I am a twelve year old author and my debut novella, “Mishti” has just recently been published. People tell me that it’s a big deal to publish a book at such a young age but to me a book is a book, whether it is written by a twelve year old or a hundred year old! The same amount of toil, pain and effort goes into it. I feel writing is a means of communication and anybody who has a good command over language, has a keen interest for the language and has the magical and lovely gift of imagination can write a book.

Through my book “Mishti” I have tried to communicate to people what I think is a perfect childhood….it could differ from child to child. I was really fascinated with the childhood stories of our earlier generations and loved to imagine myself in those settings, leading the kind of simple lives that they led, with simple pleasures, away from the video games, television, iphones etc. etc. I really wanted to share this with the kids of my generation. I wanted to communicate to them the fun that could be had even when you are not using your thumb to press buttons on a high tech joystick. As I have mentioned earlier, writing is the way I communicate, so I thought its best for me to write a book.
So, during my fifth standard summer vacations, I sat down to write this book. I had no real plan for the stories. As my thoughts flowed, I simply wrote. I was unable to stop as I was having fun! It took me six months to finish it. I showed it to my parents who were shocked and delighted at the same time to see this work of mine. One of my mother’s friends who was an author suggested that she sends this work to a few publishing houses. So after a little bit of editing here and there, my mother sent it across to a few big publishing houses and some lesser known publishers.

There were a whole lot of rejections as most of the big publishing houses said that, though they publish work for children, they don’t publish work done by children. I don’t blame them at all. That’s their view and I wasn’t disappointed as I didn’t even come up with the idea of publishing my work in the first place. There were some publishers who felt that my book wasn’t action packed, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson kind of book….which is the IN thing now and which is what SELLS. Don’t blame them either. My book is simple. That’s how i wanted it to be though. My idea was to touch people with simplicity.  Fortunately for me, a kind publisher called Dr.Ashok Gupta from Unicorn books, liked my story and offered to publish my book. He felt that I should do the illustrations and the cover page for the book. So I went to my old art teacher, learnt how to make line drawings and drew 13 illustrations, one for each chapter of the book. The next challenge was to design the cover page- I drew it and sought the help of my maternal uncle, who is a software programmer. He taught me the Gimp software and using it, I could design the cover page of the book with great ease. It took me 3 months to complete all this as i am a school going kid and have more than a truckload of work to do! So this is how “Mishti” happened. Amma created a facebook page and a blog for me. We would brainstorm to find something interesting we could post to capture the attention of the various social network fans. Slowly the news spread about “Mishti”, people started liking my facebook page, Hindu published an article about me and landmark agreed to conduct the book launch. Our honourable ex-President Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam agreed to review “Mishti” for me and sent me his review via e-mail. I will always be grateful to him for this kind gesture of his.
In between all this I had finished my second book called , “Granny Bumble’s collection of short stories”{20 short stories, word count-17,200 words}, which my mom sent again to various publishers. A publisher n
amed Tiny Tot publishers took it up for publishing. This book will be launched sometime next year. I have also finished writing my third book called, “Mulberry Meadows” which is a story about 5 horses in a stable.

I write whenever I am stressed as writing gives me great relief. Believe it or not, most of my book writing is done during exam time. I love reading and developed a good reading habit from a very young age. Some of my favourite authors are Enid Blyton, Ruskin Bond, Shakespeare, Rick riordan, Lisa Papademetriou, and Susan Coolidge, Frances Hogdson Burnett. My father is responsible for my love of reading. He nurtured my interest in books, read a lot to me, spent time choosing books. When we lived in London, he would take me to musicals and movies based on books. I grew up on Malory Towers and St. Clare’s series and I reread them all the time. Right now I am waiting for Sunday as we go to bookshops every Sunday. I can’t wait to get my hands on “Through the looking glass”, a Lewis Carroll classic, a sequel to Alice in wonderland!
Basically writing is my passion and something I really like to do. All the writers from centuries ago, days ago and even today have left us such wonderful works of art and literature, and I feel it is our duty as the future generation to leave something like this for our future generation to enjoy, otherwise with latest technology, the magic of reading will be lost in the mists of time.
Isn’t it both pleasing and inspiring to read when she says that she wrote the story because she enjoyed the fun that came with writing? The fact that she was not at all disheartened with the rejections and keenly learnt more to do the illustrations and the cover page herself.  Sir A.P.J Kalam has done a review for her book and she has wrapped up two more books already. 

Wow !!

If there had not been sweet little books and our parents had not introduced us to this magical art of reading, childhood would have been quite little less fun. Wat say?

A happy children’s day to all of you. Let’s celebrate the child in you. 
Best Wishes ,
From the editor’s desk
—Enjoy reading writersmelon. 
    Take a slice in writing !


2 thoughts on “From scribbles to novella – Journey of a 12 year old budding author

  1. Hello yamini,
    Nice to see a good future writer in you.It is very difficult to judge story selection but you take a right way to be a good author.and nice name "Mishti"…Mostly publisher not take any risk for book publishig but Don't day you definitely be a good author..

Leave a Reply