dumpukhtThe Dum Pukht Fiction Workshop is a two-week, in-residence, creative-writing workshop for experienced fiction writers looking to take their skills to the next level.
WHEN: Dec. 05, 2016 — Dec. 18, 2016 (2 weeks)
WHERE: Adishakti Theatre, Puducherry, India 605101
INSTRUCTORS: Amit Chaudhuri, Anil Menon, Pervin Saket, Akshat Nigam.
FEES: Rs. 20,000.
website: dumpukht.org

[1] What’s with the name?

Dum Pukht is the process of transforming meat and vegetables by cooking them in a closed container over a slow fire, so as to preserve natural flavors. Sort of what will happen to the workshop’s participants, so to speak.

[2] Basic Structure:

The workshop has 13 (student) participants and four instructors. The ten-day schedule is divided into three segments of roughly three days each. Each segment is handled by a different instructor, thus giving you exposure to a variety of styles, techniques and perspectives. There is considerable emphasis on group critiques, with the instructor as mediator/facilitator. You will bring one story with you, which will be critiqued in the first session. You will also write two more stories during the workshop. Half the work-day is spent on critiquing stories (this works out to about 4 critiques per day), but the other half is entirely up to the instructor. We may also invite guest experts (not necessarily writers) to share some cool stuff they’re working on.

For example, a significant part of the writing life involves public performance. Akshat Nigam, one of the country’s best young talents in oral storytelling and child

[3] Who are the instructors?

For 2016, the instructors are Anil Menon (Session 1), Pervin Saket (Session 2), Akshat Nigam (Sessions 1 & 2) and Amit Chaudhuri (Session 3).

[4] Workshop objectives:

–To get you to think about stories. Really think. Writers tend to be very good readers, but because we immerse easily, the text becomes invisible. One aim of the workshop is to break this spell of text, wake you up from the Matrix, as it were. In short, the workshop will explore the craft aspects of writing fiction.

— To help you connect text to context. India offers some wonderful possibilities for storytelling. Sometimes we can overlook these possibilities, because as with text, the overly-visible context can turn invisible.

–To give you an opportunity to interact with established and experienced professionals.

— Have some fun

[5] How To Apply

The application process is simple:

–Select one of your favorite short stories (between 2,000 & 8,000 words).
— Include a brief bio/cover letter (optional).
— Email the story & bio to contact@dumpukht.org before October 31, 2016.

Please don’t send us web links. The attached story should be a .doc/.docx/.rtf or a .pdf file. Once we receive the material, we will email an acknowledgement. You should hear from us within 24 hours.

About the story: note we are asking you to send a favorite from all the stories you’ve written, not the best. So don’t be afraid to send us a story that means a lot to you, even if you think it is “non-standard”, not publication-ready, or even, unpublishable.

About the bio/cover letter: yes, it is indeed optional. That said, as a writer you already know that any chance to have people read your writing, any kind of writing, is an opportunity.

[6] About the instructors:

AMIT CHAUDHURI is the author of five novels, one work of non-fiction and a number of books of literary criticism. Among the many prizes he has won for his fiction are the Commonwealth Literature Prize, the Betty Trask Prize, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Infosys Prize and the Sahitya Akademi Award. He is also a highly respected critic, a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and Professor of Contemporary Literature at the University of East Anglia. Amit Chaudhuri lives in Kolkata and Norwich, and is also an acclaimed musician.

ANIL MENON’s short fiction has appeared in a variety of magazines including Interzone, Interfictions, Strange Horizons, Jaggery Lit Review and Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet. His short stories have been translated into Hindi, Tamil, Chinese, Czech, French, German, Hebrew and Romanian. His debut novel “The Beast With Nine Billion Feet” (Zubaan Books, 2010) was shortlisted for the 2010 Vodafone-Crossword award and the Carl Brandon Society’s 2011 Parallax Award. Along with Vandana Singh, he co-edited “Breaking the Bow” (Zubaan Books 2012), an international anthology of speculative fiction inspired by the Ramayana epic. His most recent work is the novel “Half Of What I Say” (Bloomsbury, 2015), described by Biblio.in as “a paradigm changer.”

PERVIN SAKET was shortlisted for the Random House India Writers Bloc Award 2013 and is the author of a novel Urmila (Jaico, India, 2015), of a children’s series ‘Adventures @ Miscellaneous Shelf Four’ and of a collection of poems A Tinge of Turmeric, (Writers Workshop, India, 2009). Pervin’s short fiction has appeared in Journeys (Sampad, UK, 2010) Breaking the Bow – Speculative Fiction Inspired by the Ramayana, (Zubaan, India, 2012) The Asian Writer Collection (Dahlia, UK, 2010), Aliens (Prime Books, USA, 2013), Earthen Lamp Journal (2014), Khabar, Love Across Borders – An Anthology by Indian and Pakistani Writers, Page Forty Seven and others. Pervin’s poetry has been featured in Kritya, Platform, The Binnacle (University of Maine, USA), Veils, Halos and Shackles: International Poetry on the Oppression and Empowerment of Women, Helter Skelter and elsewhere. She is a certified Creative Writing Trainer from British Council and a Consulting Editor with Ratna Sagar P. Ltd., where she works on developing academic books.

AKSHAT NIGAM holds a Master’s Degree in English Literature and has worked in the field of Arts Education for nearly a decade. His forte lies in conceptualizing and organising arts-based workshops and in teaching Literature, Creative Writing, Film Making and Cinema Appreciation to children. Akshat worked for 8 years at The Pomegranate Workshop in Mumbai: a private arts education company that runs several programs across the arts for children and adults.

Akshat has conducted Film Making Workshops for children at the International Children’s Film Festival of India at their 2011 and 2013 editions, in addition to numerous workshops in Film Making and Film Appreciation in schools and independently. Akshat has also worked on a number of theatre productions under Alyque Padamsee and Mumbai-based youth theatre collective QTP. He served his traineeship as an Assistant Director to Mr. Rajkumar Hirani on the feature film Lage Raho Munnabhai and did a short stint in Advertising before switching to Education.

In the last two years, Akshat has diversified into the art of Storytelling for children and for adults. He debuted in ‘East of the Sun, West of the Moon’, a Pomegranate production, in 2015. His current performance under the collective The Forty Thieves, called ‘Error 404: Life Not Found’ opened in theatres in March 2016, while another show titled ‘An Uneasy Truce: Stories about Fear’ opened in June 2016. Both shows continue to be performed regularly.

Thank you for your interest. If you have any questions, visit dumpukht.org or send us an email at contact@dumpukht.org.


Anil and Pervin