It was way back in 1973 around this time in April, when I was just about sixteen-and-a-half and not yet out of school that I began earning after starting a library with a classmate. The journey which kicked off then continued for the following 47 years, the first half – till 1996 – working for some good employers in different sectors and then publishing, and the next half as a freelance writer associated with reputed publishers and companies from India and some other countries.
Sadly that nearly half-a-century-long journey is coming to an end, especially with the Coronavirus tragedy devastating economies including the media.
Our children are living abroad along with their partners, and Gayatri and I have been able to save up some money, but mainly in our Pune and Mumbai homes.
Most of the publications and companies I used to freelance for are unable to continue with too many new assignments, or have to makedo with internal staff, and assignments (and of course budgets) for other writers have dwindled drastically. Getting a steady income from freelancing is now quite a challenge.
Of course, like most arts writing and photography have always been challenging (and monetarily not so rewarding) journeys; as American writer Henry Miller (1891-1980) said once: “Writing is it’s own reward.”
And thanks to social media sites like Facebook and Instagram one can continue pursuing one’s passions as long as one lives (though forget the money part in most cases).
Looking ahead, I’ve my biggest passions – writing, poetry and photography – to pursue. While writing a book or two is a longterm dream, reading the enormous collection of books I have will be a great journey. So too, hopefully writing ‘ghost’ autobiographies and biographies (anyone out there wanting books on them are welcome to approach me), travelogues, continuing with articles, reports, editing, rewrites, proofing (again all are welcome to frame out their work).
Writing and photography will remain a passion till the end of one’s life, so I intend continuing to do what I have always loved.
Apr 1, 2020