April 15, 2012

Writing this summer

Can summer be a theme? Or is heritage more exciting?

It is that time of the year when we invite young people who wish to get a feel of print journalism to a Camp at our newspapers.

It is a Camp we have been holding for many years and it has taken on different avatars over time.

Tossing a few ideas even as we call for applications, I mused on a theme-driven Camp that might interest senior school students who have discovered a calling for the written word.

Summer is a given theme.

Could we get closer to our parents or grandparents and discover the foodstuffs they choose to make at this time of year?

Pickles and snacks, juices and dry food.

And we could we then relate to all the eco food products that get to the shelves at this time of the year. And then raid our refrigerators to find out what food we stock there.

I recall a news report that  P. V. Durga from Theayagaraya Nagar who was at our Camp last year did. She located a woman in Nadanam who made excellent, spicy Andhra pickles at home and sold them by word of mouth.

Her USP - the pickles did not have preservatives.

Heritage is a theme I can easily explore.

And it will have to start at home. We would like to ask our Campers to take a look at their mother's treasured saris and relate them to the displays at  the local store. We could take a look at the calligraphy of the local Urdu publication and relate it to how others have used the vernacular for web publishing.

In between, we will go on a Heritage Walk, have a picnic and get back to write on Madras terrace or 'tinnais'  that survive in our backyard.

Last year, we went on a walk down C. P. Ramaswamy Road, to the Alwarpet Circle. The exercise was to 'observe'. The flowers blooming on avenue trees. The promo handbills on EB boxes, the stuff in showcases and Tibetan medicine inside the Grove.

Samples of the reports are still at www.mtjclass.blogspot.com

If you are passionate about writing, sign up now.

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