Thanks to my benefactors who bought the book
(If you have ordered a copy, please let me know personally)
If you find yourselves here, then you must know that I have published my first book. Titled with the name of my blog itself, A ‘Psycho’ Path, it is a collection of short stories and articles that I wrote during the final year of my college life.
Proof read by Namita Nair. Cover design by Praseetha K. R. My classmates, both of them.
People usually say, “I never dreamed of this happening”. But I say, “Hey, I did dream of this happening”, for I had dreamed of becoming an author while I was in 10th grade. As Aerosmith says, “Dream on until your dream comes true”.
Getting the book.
PDF: You can download the pdf version of the book for free from here.
BOOK: If you would like to support me, do consider buying a hard copy of the book from one of the following places:
SOURCE: You can find the book’s source here.
How can you help me?
Spread the word. This book is self-published and hence, has no publisher. Tell your friends, share the link to this page wherever you can and also, your feedbacks are most welcome. Not just about the content of the book, but about anything that you wish to say regarding what I have done. Leave a comment!
The story behind.
Dreaming of becoming an author in 10th grade? Sounds childish, huh? Sure is. But childish or not, a dream is a dream. If you have read the post about this guy, my cousin, you can see that he and I had sat together and written a novel each. However, while he finished it, I, for some reason, dropped it half way through. At that time, I had dreamed of publishing my story. Now I fulfill that dream of publishing a book, even if it is not that story.
Once we, me and my cousin, were done working on these novels, we decided to do one together. Searching for ideas, we finally ended upon something quite interesting. There was a game called Golden Sun in the GameBoy Advance SP. One of the best games that I have ever played in my life. It had a really good story line as well as a wonderful gameplay.
We both decided to write that as a novel.
So we created a new profile and started playing the game from scratch (after having finished it a gazillion times!). We would take turns to write the story and play the game. A very sweet and passionate project it was and we made quite an amazing progress with it. However, one week, there was a lot of carpentry work to be done with regard to the upcoming wedding at my home. Unfortunately, among all the hustle and bustle, someone stole the GameBoy console! Alas, that marked the end of our story writing. We had got to slaying the evil Tret, saving the people of Kolima and were on our way to the Mercury lighthouse, when the tragedy happened.
Now after all these years, finally graduating from my college, here I have a book in my name. How did all this come to be? That takes us back to 10th March 2011. The inauguration of the Computer Science association at our college by the name of Abacus.
For conducting it’s inaugural function, we got hold of Mr. Shalin Jain, the CEO of tenmiles corporation. I got to spend quite a lot of time with him having one and a half hour journey separating our college and the Coimbatore airport, where he was getting down. He was a happy man, for each day, he woke up to do something that he loved. Hence life was never a drag. That message got through to me. “To follow what you love”.
Coincidentally, after the inauguration ceremony and his speech, I was hunting for options in order to have a website for Abacus. It would seem that amidst the sudden excitement and discussions, we had already created a wordpress blog in our name. That was the first time that I was hearing the name “wordpress”. However, by the time we sorted out the options for a website, the wordpress blog was left behind and we went with free hosting and free domain name services.
One night, I was simply checking out the already created wordpress blog, for the idea of having a personal website this easily created for you was really appealing. I simply tried writing down a few words regarding my daily life and posted it. If you check my first posts, you can see that I was simply having fun and suddenly one day, I decided that I should have a more ‘personal’ name for the blog. That evening, being at my hostel room, my laptop on the table in front of me, I leaned back on my chair, turned my face around and asked the opinion of my Naruto crazed friend, Varun, regarding a name for my blog.
He was not quite sure what to put in there and frankly, today I don’t remember what he had suggested back then. However, something tipped me off into saying, “Hey, it is going to have what I say, so…” and in that instant, it was born. Sosaysharis.
- A ‘psycho’ path
How did it came to be called “A ‘psycho’ path” you ask? Well, there is another small story behind that. One day I was coming back home from college in the 3.05pm Coimbatore – Kannur fast passenger. I was fortunate enough to get a window seat and I was enjoying the sight outside. Just then, a book vendor came by and placed a whole lot of books on the seat next to me and went away, That is how it it done, they keep their books there and go back so that we can browse through them and buy anything we like once they come back.
Well, I happened to take a few books and one among them was on “SMS jokes”. I flipped through it and randomly stopped at a certain page. Skimming through it, one joke got my eye. It was:
Q: What do you call a path travelled by a mad man?
A: A ‘psycho’ path.
I felt that to be really funny and even cracked that joke at a few gatherings. This was there in my mind all along, existing as a very ingenious and clever joke. So when the time came to name my blog, without any second thoughts, I put it down. A ‘psycho’ path.
- On the trail I blaze, there is light at the end.
Now comes the caption. You have these instances in life that certain things that you read/hear simply stays in your mind right? Urging you to use it making you wait for the right occasion to shout it out loud and feel good about it? Mostly dialogues from a Movie or a Cartoon. Well, I had such a dialogue from a lovely Cartoon called, “The road to El Dorado”.
After two friends, Miguel and Tulio (who happened to be con men), wash up on a beach from a ship wreck, they try to decide what to do from there. While the confused Tulio stands weighing his options, Miguel runs forth in full excitement, draws his sword and cuts up a lot of wild shrubbery shouting, “On the trail we blaze!”. However, the shrubbery reveals a huge boulder just beneath it and Tulio gives a nasty look at Miguel. Miguel, without even losing an ounce of enthusiasm, shouts, “On that trail we blaze!”, pointing to someplace else and darts across there. Tulio, depressed, gives a sigh and slowly follows his friend.
Anyway, so you can see where I got the “On the trail I blaze” part. But when putting that as a caption, it sounded incomplete. Hence I simply sat and thought about it. It dawned upon me when you blaze a trail, you keep up your confidence, in the hope that you finally reach somewhere. Since it resembled unadulterated optimism from one’s side, I came up with the “There is light at the end part”.
- From the blog to the book.
From then on, it was pure fun because I had two friends, Sharat and Manu, who got interested in blogging at the same time as me. So we would write what we want and we ourselves would read each other’s posts and comment on them. Life was good and things went on like that. I slowly started getting interested in writing philosophies as well as stories instead of just life’s happenings. I gave my friends a Christmas gift with my blog as well.
Now, as for how the “blog to book” thought happened, that takes us to April 7th, 2012, when I attended the Gnome 3.4 release party at MES, Kutipuram. If you check that out, you can see that some of us had a nice discussion towards the end. In the middle of that, we discussed something called “crowd funding projects”. That got my attention as it implied the idea of the common man financially supporting certain projects they found interesting. We talked about a few projects that were made freely available to the public which received donations from people who found it interesting. Also how much the world had advanced that we did not need a middle man anymore to give publicity for our works.
After coming back home, I brooded on the thoughts. I mean, even if nothing else, I had at least written a lot right? Many people had found it interesting as well as helpful from my blog too. So why not give it a shot and see what happens? Also, I felt that copyright was not a necessity anymore since as long as people supported you for your work, why unnecessarily impose restrictions on them? It was the gesture of good will from both sides. With this in mind, I mailed my brother and asked him advice regarding it. He encouraged me to go forward with it, but only after finishing my main project. Hence I tucked it away neatly in a corner of my mind.
- Book work
The official work on the book started on 27th June. Since all the matter was already there, i just needed to copy and paste them from my blog to my book. But as easy as I felt that to be, I slowly began to realize that it was easier said than done. The first and foremost trouble being getting Latex to format it correctly. From there it began. I made up a rough copy of the pdf and sent it to Namita, my classmate. She had gone back to Haryana to her Mother and Father, since we were done with college.
I think it might as well be the first time in her life that she had a message offer in her phone. She would read up one or two of the entries, mark the corrections to be made in a .doc file and send it back to me. We would keep in constant touch discussing about the corrections as well as would have casual chats. It was wonderful to have someone as jolly as her as a friend and boy was she adamant that I watch an episode of ‘friends’! We got to know each other a lot better during that one month and I’m never going to forget some of her experiences while learning to drive!
Meanwhile, parallel to the proof reading part, I had asked Praseetha to design a cover for my book. As you can see from her site, she quite an artist as well as an amazing web developer. She designed the Abacus site. We had worked hand in hand with getting Abacus up and running. Me doing things in the real world and she doing things in the virtual world. Anyway, with one or two tries, she came up with the perfect cover design for the book. It was ‘Psycho’ indeed! However, her job could only be completed if the total number of pages in my book were known. And that had to wait until the final touch was given.
What really made the book’s progress to lag was the story “The Prophecy of Amelyah”. You can find it’s old version in my blog and new version in the book. Even though people liked the old version, there were many parts of it that could have been made much better and many asked for a rewrite. Since the entire idea of the story seemed appealing, I decided to do a rewrite. But man, if rewriting a story is not one of the most taxing tasks in the world! So that took time and finally have done it.
- Technical background
Since I have been using Linux for my day to day activities from the moment I got my own computer, I developed this book on it as well. I used Latex for formatting, git for version controlling and storing it online and Ubuntu 12.04 as the Operating System. The work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
- And here we are!
By the 3rd of August, everything was set and done and I ordered my first copy from pothi. I had to make sure that everything was fine before I made it public. There was a slight delay in the delivery as my home was not within the range of the Blue Dart courier service. So the pothi team got it back from them and sent it to me via speed post and here it is…