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Showing posts from 2018

5 easy and useful tips to help you achieve your goals.

Dreams are goals with a deadline. If you can dream it, you can achieve it. I am a huge believer of these two statements.

Many a time, I have been asked this question
'How do you do so many things? How do you focus on your goals? How are you so dedicated?'

Many have written to me asking me to share my routine/ time-management/how I organise my day. So here goes:

Currently I am doing a challenge called Intkober where you do 31 drawings in Ink, in 31 days. The prompts are given in advance. Click on the link to know more. Thousands of artists all over the world do it, each year. I post my drawings on myInstagram art handle.

This is in addition to my writing which I do daily. I also make a portrait every single day, apart from Inktober.

I guess, to most people who see this, it looks like a LOT of things and they wonder how I manage it. Here are five  things I do, which help me. (and I hope they help you too)

1. Define the goals.

At the beginning of each month, I write down (in a dia…

Why you are making a mistake if you don't speak up about #MeToo

The last few days have been tumultuous for everyone in urban India. If you are a working professional, or have worked at some point in your life, or if you strongly believe in gender equality,  it is hard to not get affected by the #Metoo movement. The #Metoo movement has taken off in India, like the  metaphorical snowball. I too, like many of you,  have been following closely, in shocked silence, as it has been unfolding. I can't tell you how happy I am that women in India, are standing up in solidarity, taking back their dignity.

Several  powerful men have been named.The stories have come POURING out.
I shall not go into details of the men named or the incidents here, as it is all over the media.

When something happens in your field of interest, it is natural that it affects you more than the incidents that happen in other fields. For me, what has been particularly disturbing was that the names from the field of literature that were coming out as well.

Earlier, in press in…

The Rule Breakers by Preeti Shenoy, Out in stores now! Also let's meet in these cities! :)

Yesterday, my eleventh book The Rule Breakers went out into the world!

It was a proud and a happy day :)






I had an interview at Red FM, and in the video above, you can see me, along with RJ Zeishah, and she loved the book. It was wonderful discussing the book with her.

The book is out in bookstores now.



So, you don't have to wait anymore, if you wish to read it :)

The story is a COMPLEX one. It begins very simply and easily. It is the story of Veda.
But after she gets married (at 19) to a guy chosen by her parents, and shifts to Pune from Joshimath, new people enter her life.  The timid, shy Veda must now carve her own path.

Here are a few characters from the book:



Follow Veda's story, as she goes through life, and find out for yourself, who the REAL rule-breakers  are in this book!

Get it from your local bookstore or order online and pay cash on deliver:  http://preeti.io/trb


Folks in Pune and Ahmedabad, I am coming to your city! Folks in Ahmedabad--it is a closed event on 20…

How I wrote eleven books: A true story of a very personal journey.

It was on this day twelve years ago that my father passed away. There was no warning, no illness, no ailments--nothing. He was alive one moment, chatting and talking to my mother. He had walked 5 kms , his usual  distance, that morning. He had meetings lined up for next day. He was to visit me in Pune, a week later. Instead he leaned back in his chair, while watching TV, closed his eyes and died.

The death changed my perception about everything. It altered forever the way I looked at life. It affected all parts of my being--my health, my daily routine, my philosophy, my core belief system. My father was my strength and my rock. I used to talk to him every day. My day was not complete, unless I had a discussion with him on the phone. He had a curious mind, and we used to talk about everything  in the universe. When he died, a part of me died with him.

 I had started this blog In October 2006,  forty five days after his death. I did not think about what I was doing or how long I would …

Five rules I broke which changed the way I think

There are several rules that society imposes on Indian women (and men too.). Some of these rules are so  accepted, that nobody questions them. It is how we were raised. It is a part of our culture. It is just how we are.
I have always been a person who questions things. Even as a child, I was constantly questioning why things had to be the way they are. My mother, a strict disciplinarian would not encourage it, and there was no way out, other than just obeying whatever rules she laid down. In retrospect, it helped instill a sense of discipline in me.

In contrast, with my father, I could question everything. There was nothing which was taboo or forbidden. At the age of nine or perhaps ten,  encouraged by my father, I had read books like  'I'm OK, you're OK' by Thomas A Harris, and we would discuss things and analyse our conversation in terms discussed in the book. (transactional analysis)

My father did not believe in following anything blindly. He encouraged me to thin…

The number one essential to be a succesful writer.

What is the most important thing, a writer must do, in order to be successful? I am often asked this.

Now 'being successful' itself can be defined in several ways. If you are an aspiring writer, I would consider the first step of success as completing a manuscript. If you have managed to sit down and have completed writing a book, you are successful, whether you have managed to find a publisher or not. You  have successfully crossed the first step.


The other question I am usually asked is about my art. One of the things I do, in between my writing is my art. I am asked questions like how it helps my writing, and whether a writer should have other forms of creative expression, other than writing.

I don't think a writer truly needs to have any other form of creative expression, if they are not inclined! If you are passionate about writing and you have no other creative pursuits, that is perfectly okay. To say that one must have other creative pursuits apart from writing…

Three powerful things every aspiring writer must do.

On Saturday, I got a message from my publisher.
'Check the Hindustan Times today; We're at No.5 and No.8,' he said.

I checked immediately, and my heart leapt up in joy.  TWO of my books were indeed among the highest selling fiction books in the country. My publisher also sent me this nice creative!




 I felt very happy, because it's not easy for a book to climb into the charts MONTHS after it's release. In the case of Life is What You Make It, it is TEN YEARS since  I wrote that book. Having the books there was validation that people find comfort and joy in my writing.

I have grown as a writer, with every book I have written. I do work very hard at my craft. I am constantly trying to write better. I write every single day---although everything is not for publication. I have a desk full of notebooks and diaries which I have filled over the years. I have my gratitude journal, my daily journal, my story ideas, my blog posts, my emails, my one minute writing exercises. …

A few happy things!

Over the last few days, I have been making a portrait every single day, as a part of#Risedrawas well as the May Drawing challenge. Initially I was posting my portraits every single day, on this blog. Then I realised that not too many people read this blog for  my portraits :) Also I do have a dedicatedInstagram page for my art where I post daily!

I didn't see any point in duplicating the same here. Especially because, I also post it on sktchy app. So to post it a third time on my blog, didn't make any sense.

 In case  you do not have an Instagram account, you can still click on the link, bookmark it, and see it from your laptop :)

Apologies to all those who have written to me saying that they are disappointed that I didn't post daily here--this was the reason.



Also a big thank you to all of you who interpreted the 'heart signs' that I had been seeing everywhere.
I want to tell you all, that the heart signs continued the next day too! It was the craziest thing ever…

Are you missing a sign? (or What do you think this means?)

Yesterday, something strange happened to me.
In the mornings and in the evenings, I always take my dog for a walk. Sometimes, we go thrice a day.
Yesterday, in the morning, when I went for my walk, I saw this.

 It was a little rope which was lying in my path in the shape of a heart. I just found it cute and amusing. So I clicked a picture and posted in on my Instagram stories. (I keep posting  throughout the day, tiny snippets from my life.) Those of you who follow me on instagram, must have seen this in my feed. You can see my foot and my dog's paw in the above photo.

Then I walked on. A few minutes later, I found another rope/chord lying on my path--and this one too in the shape of a heart! I clicked another photo.

Here too you can see my foot and my dog's paw.

I had read a lot of posts from Erin Pavlina, as in the past many remarkable coincidences kept happening in my life. Erin has written a very useful piece,where she explains how to tell if something is a sign from the…

Two watercolour portraits.

These are the two portraits I made over the last two days. You can follow my art handle on Instagram (http://instagram.com/preetishenoyart)  if you want to see them faster!


Also I was overwhelmed with the  lovely reviews I have been getting. I am sharing  two of them here:



Thank you for the love folks. See you tomorrow for more!
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buy the book: http://preeti.io/lals

Does minimalism help you?

I am a huge fan of minimalism.  I think there is great beauty in simplicity. My prose is often described as simple, but powerful. It is deliberate.

I also like clean, uncluttered spaces. I work best when the environment around me is comfortable, organised and uncluttered. I am a huge fan of Marie Kondo and her methods.

Hence for today's drawing, I loved the instruction we received. We were to make a portrait (from the reference photo given) without using any facial features!

Here's what I did:







I am happy with my drawing--and so was my instructor Patrick Hochstenbach.


Meanwhile, I got some good news today. My publisher told me that Love a Little Stronger is doing really well, and we will soon be going in for an additional print run. I was happy to hear that.

It is currently NUMBER ONE on Hot new releases on Amazon in Indian Writing.


If you haven't read it yet, grab it  now! :) http://preeti.io/lals



New post tomorrow.
Till then, think about minimalism, and let me know what …

3 things that comfort me when things go wrong

Today, I tried to make the portrait twice. (as a part of Rise and Draw and May drawing Challenge, where I draw a picture every day)  Twice I failed. When I say failed, I don't mean that I did not complete it. I did. I mean that I wasn't happy with it.

I have posted it though, on the sktchy app, as well as on my Instagram art page.

Some days are just not our days. No matter how hard we try, things don't go the way we planned.

On such days, if you CAN afford to stop what you are doing, you should do just that. (if you are working for an organisation, you probably may not be able to do this but then you can prioritize the work, and choose something else, if you have several tasks)
Here are five things that I do, which comfort me when things don't go my way:

1. Writing One thing that does comfort me is my writing. No matter how bad the day is, no matter what has happened, I always feel better when I write. Writing calms me, helps me make sense of what is going around me a…

Imagine and change your life--- a little life lesson I learnt from my art.

For my today's Rise and Draw,  I got a black and white photograph.



This was the image I got. We had to pay special attention to the tones, and then convert it into colour.
Here's what I made:
 I was quite pleased with what I did.



Later it struck me---if we have a situation that's dark in our lives, that is black and white, then it is up to us to imagine it  it in a new way. We are nothing but the stories we tell ourselves. If you are feeling down about something, click a mentalpicture of it. Now look for the 'dark tones' within it. Then focus on the lighter tones. You begin to see the whole picture then!

But for the darker tones, the lighter ones would not appear so vibrant, so colourful.

We can change our lives by changing the stories we tell ourselves. By changing what we focus on.

And bringing some colour into a jaded black and white sceanrio.



Tomorrow, new drawing and new post.
Till then--look at the bright side.
_________________________
Buy Love a Little Strong…

Two more portraits

Every day, I make a portrait, as a part of Rise and Draw and May drawing Challenge. I post it to Sktchy, then I post it to my Instagram Art Account.

This is apart from the few hours that I spend making the portrait! So please excuse me if I am unable to post daily. (I promise to try, but sometimes, there's genuinely no time!). In case you wish to see it daily, please do follow my Instagram art account. You don't have to open an instagram id to see it. You can also view it on your desktop by clicking on Instagram.com/preetishenoyart

This is specially for all those who read my blog, and don't have Instagram. I find it easy to post on Instagram, as the photo is already on my phone. For my blog, I have to transfer it to my laptop, and then locate  it, and then upload it!

Here are the two portraits I made (one yesterday and one today):




As per my tutor's instructions I had to first study the model (Abe Linares) by making many sketches of his different expressions.
The I had…

Friday Face!

This is the portrait I made for today as a apart of Rise and Draw. I am taking part in the May drawing challenge where I make a painting every single day. One of the best ways to push yourself to commit to something is to take a challenge, and then post it on social media :)
That way, you are forced to be 'accountable' and you are likely to keep it up.

Weekend is here! Many people make weekend plans. But me?
I am just going to read, work out, sleep and garden.
And of course, being in karnataka, I am going to vote too.

How about you?  What are YOUR plans?

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Buy the book: http://preeti.io/lals

Waiting for love.

Though I had completed the drawing challenge, yesterday I hadn't got time to post it on the blog. I had posted it on my Instagram Art page though! So, in case you were waiting for a post from me, I apologise for not updating it yesterday.

Here's the portrait I made yesterday, as a part of Rise and Draw as well as the May drawing Challenge, where I paint one  picture every single day.  These days, since I am also taking part in Rise and Draw, I get a photo, and an instruction in my inbox every single day!

Here's what I painted yesterday:



And here's what I made today:



For today's portrait, we were asked to illustrate the background, and relate it to the model. To me the model appeared pensive and kind of sad, as though waiting for something or someone. I am fond of Avicii’s music, and I felt sad when he died. Thought this was a nice way to pay tribute to him. The background has words  from his song “Waiting for Love.” I enjoyed making this one, and am quite pl…

A simple way to be consistent.

This is the portait I made today with water colors and pen. You can see one more that i made as well as the original reference photo on my Instagram art page.

This is a part of Rise and Draw as well as the May Drawing challenge, where I post one new picture that I paint every single day.

Every person who is a subject expert in their field will tell you that the only way to get better and better at something is to constantly keep doing it. I endorse that a hundred percent. Whether it comes to fitness, writing, dance, art or anything that needs discipline, commitment  is the key. You have to make a commitment and stick to it, not matter what.

If you find it hard to make a long term commitment, make it for a shorter duration of time--maybe two days, or three days or whatever time period you can manage. Follow it for those three days. If you have managed to keep it up, give yourself a little treat! If not begin over.

The only way to do a task that seems 'impossible and gargantuan'…