Poet, Author, Editor, Creative Writing Consultant

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Another Endorsement

Vrinda Baliga, author of the short-story collection 'Name, Place, Animal, Thing' (2017), writes of my recent editing of her stories:
"Abha edited my short stories with a keen eye for detail, and I am very happy with the results. She is prompt and professional, and a pleasure to work with. I highly recommend her services."
Thanks so much, Vrinda, for your endorsement.

Friday, June 28, 2019

More Praise for my Editing

Dr. Ameya Bodre, Head, Clinical R&D, SINE lab, IIT-Mumbai writes:

'I got an opportunity to share one of the stories of my debut collection with Abha and I am more than happy with her edits. I think this story was a bit different from the others I'd written, and I felt I experimented with the style and narrative. She provided useful feedback without outrightly asking me to make any major structural changes. She didn't remove any chunk of text but finely edited it to retain its essence and yet sound crisp and effective. She introduced important transitions in the plot that changed my reading experience of this story. I would surely recommend her edits for all budding and established short story and fiction writers!'

Monday, June 17, 2019


These days I take my tea without sugar,
And I like the music turned down low.
I have less appetite for small talk, 

And I like books that are short but truthful. 
I love you but I don’t want to own you. 
When you’re gone, I will miss you
But not too much; I have my writing. 
I start shows on Netflix and abandon them. 
I look up at the sky and am transfixed. 
I look also at the banyan tree’s roots 
On some nights while going home; 
The roots hanging long and still, 
Like a sleeping woman’s hair 
Hanging off of the edge of the bed. 
I have less and less to say to people. 
I tune into silence with alacrity, 
Like it’s a preferred radio station. 
I am casting off old darlings 
One by one; sugar, sound, drama. 
“Well, dear, life is a casting off. 
It was always that way.” 
I remember those lines 
From an Arthur Miller play. 
Am I getting older and wiser, 
Or merely older and colder? 
How to be sure? 
Maybe I don’t want to be sure;
I’ll cast off that darling too; 
The need to feel sure.
What was that?
Do I need anything?
No, my dear.
Well, maybe a cup of tea,
If you’re having some too.
Warm, not piping hot.
And no sugar.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Further Praise for My Editing Skills


            You were referred to me by a common friend of ours who gave very good review about your style of working and editing. So I decided to avail your services and true to the review I got about you I too had a wonderful experience working under your guidance. Your schedule for editing was very time bound. The clarification asked for was duly addressed and the editing of the novel was good. Moreover I got to learn quite a few things about presentation, Grammar, structuring of sentences and paragraphs. Thank you ma'am for all your patient help and guidance and all the insight into editing. It was a wonderful learning experience for me. I admire your professional and friendly approach to work. I hope I get an opportunity to work under your guidance in near future again.

Piyush Rohankar

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

In praise of my editing skills

Thank you Abha for copy editing and proof reading my book even before the dead line. 
You have done a wonderful job and it was a pleasure working with you.
I greatly appreciate the work you have done for me, and for your valuable time and patience. 
Thanks to you my book is ready for publishing.

Warm Regards,


Sunday, April 15, 2018

In praise of my work

Authors attempting daring leaps out of traditional form deserve to be read especially if their work is done with focused intent.
I am pleased and enriched for having read it (Flash Bites) as well as your novel, Shrayan.'

`Rich Perrotti

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Book Review of Yearnings: My poetry collection


Thursday, February 17, 2011
Book Review: Yearnings by Abha Iyengar

I'm not a great reader of poems, but as a lover of literary expression in any form, I was drawn in by Abha Iyengar's sample poems from her book Yearnings. Drawn in enough to immediately order a copy of her book.

As the title makes clear, this collection is about longing, love, loss, passion and related emotions and situations. What I admire about Abha's poetry is its impressionist style of communication--it paints a quick, terse picture whose aim is to capture the moment and the emotion, and it does that effectively. In art, too, I have a deeper admiration of Impressionism than Realism. Realism merely portrays what the eye sees, albeit in careful, loving detail but Impressionism carries the heart of the artist as well--it is his choice to capture the subject in that particular moment, angle and light, and this choice and his quick strokes show intense focus and urgency to record and love that person, place or action at that moment.

Yearnings is a collection of 67 short poems that are a pleasure to read and re-read. In these poems, there's none of the embellishment that a lot of poetry falls prey to: the frills and lace that really point to nothing. Instead there's solid content, honesty and truth. For example, here's Travel:

If you give me a look
vistas open up

If you blow me a kiss
winds gather up a storm

If you hold my hand
my fingers touch smooth pillars

In unseen corridors
I travel blind
but belong.

Another one I like is Aroma:

Sometimes it takes just the aroma
Of freshly ground coffee beans
To make me fall into your brown arms.
I am vacuuming
The carpet,
Wiping the sweat off my
Hot brow,
And the whiff comes from across the hall
Of somebody casting the magic spell
With the help of a potent witches' brew.
I switch off the vacuum and
Remove my shirt.

Some of the other poems I enjoyed in this collection are Ice cream, Strange Lands, A Table, Two Poems, Echo, Grief, Shadows, Everything Natural and I Conserve.

Yearnings is available from Serene Woods and Flipkart.

at 3:59 pm

1 comment:
monideepa said...
The poems are lovely. Abha caputres so aptly the many delicate nuances of romance. A must-read for die-hard romantic dreamers and everyone else too