Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Reportage and Anthologies

Journalism - as someone once quipped - is the mother of a book. Fiction or non-fiction, for a journalist in the thick of action, comes easy because the grist is always at a pen's throw. Either at interviews, spot coverages, special assignments or among scores of human characters that a journalist has to navigate to flesh out a story. Strangely, each of these - animate or inanimate characters (sometimes situations) - has a story to tell. Compiling a book is relatively easy. Put your tales - I mean the news stories that the scribe have filed every decrepit evening after another - in sequence. Spice it with colour, locales, mood - some legwork from an archive or even the wikio- and behold you have a non-fiction volume. An anthology is a shortest route to fame. A comprehensive non-fiction requires some more sweat and midnight's oil. Moral: The non-fiction writer and the interpreter/analyst win the day. It is time, journalists thought before putting their despatches together as a book. Innovative thinking coupled with the real-life encounters make for a good non-fiction.

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