Kalimpong-born author-illustrator brings Tales on Tweet with 50 stories

Kalimpong-born author-illustrator brings Tales on Tweet with 50 stories
A Kalimpong-born author-illustrator has curated stories told in 140-charater tweets by established and aspiring writers and brought out a book with illustrations.
Tales on Tweet, released by Congress MP and writer Shashi Tharoor in New Delhi on August 1, has been hailed for its novelty: 50 stories in less than 140 characters.
Before the book, Manoj Pandey used to get tweets on his handle @TalesOnTweet. Around 1,000 stories have appeared there and Pandey chose 50 of them for the book.
Illustrations for the book were done by New York-based Japanese artist Yuko Shimizu.

"It was an honour to have Mr Tharoor release the book, especially since he has been very encouraging about the project which I had started in 2011," Pandey said over the phone from Delhi.
Pandey started by sharing snippets of his writings on the twitter handle in the hope of getting ideas and honest criticism. To his surprise, authors like Tharoor and booker prize winner Salman Rushdie responded with stories of their own.
"I was just treating it as an online digital diary, where I wrote stories within 140 characters, with the hashtag #talesontweet. I had tagged few of my favourite authors like Shashi Tharoor, Salman Rushdie and Margaret Atwood. To my surprise, they wrote back, not with criticism, but with a story," he said.

For instance, Rushdie's post that is featured in the book reads: "She died. He followed her into the underworld. She refused to return, preferring Hades. It was a long way to go to be dumped."
Actor Kabir Bedi wrote: "On the banks of the Ganges, he'd prepare a thousand funeral pyres, not knowing the sorrow of death. Till his son died."
Enthused by the tales that he started receiving, Pandey started thinking about coming out with a book to enable readers not on the web or social media to sample the fare.
"So, I thought maybe I could come up with a book myself," said the 32-year-old alumnus of St Augustine's School in Kalimpong.
Once his mind was made up, Pandey, a copywriter and illustrator with an advertisement agency, began the process of editing and curating from all these tweets.
While on the job, he thought of getting the mini-stories illustrated and zeroed in on Yuko, of whom he is a self-confessed fan.
"Yuko Shimizu is a Japanese illustrator based in New York," said Pandey.
Their combined effort, which is published by HarperCollins India, is getting rave reviews.
Tharoor wrote about the book: "Brilliantly conceived, artfully written, evocatively illustrated, Tales on Tweet is both wildly original and endlessly diverting. A collectors' classic."
Prajwal Parajuly, the Sikkim-born writer, said: "Delightful. So much fun. So many stories. Read the book. Re-read it. Re-re-re read it. Buy a copy for your neighbor who reads. Buy a copy for a neighbor who dislikes reading." (TT)

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