The Love Letter series: The fourth one

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My Love

you are my best friend. The one who says, “hey what else did I want to tell you,” when you have already told me everything. And then you listen to my everything. I love the way we refer to us as ‘we’. And the way we make plans for the future. Yes, our future is super bright, supernova bright. We like to believe in good things, we best friends. I love how we think the other is the most wonderful person in the world. And we tell each other that. “oh ya baby, you are lovely. You are the best.” “oh yes love, you are awesome like that.” We make each other feel beautiful. That’s why we are best friends. We fuel each other’s dreams. And when we can’t talk anymore, we kiss. That makes it even better — a best friend I like to kiss. That’s who you are.

I love you

Me

October musings

Somehow this October is making me all romantic. And when i heard this song by St Vincent, i felt weak in the knees. Her voice is haunting and oh so lovely. don’t blame me if you want to kiss somebody as soon as it finishes

also, i have been re-reading all the world famous romances to inspire my writing and it’s been an awesome exercise. You know the feeling you get sometimes when a book calls out to you — well fountainhead has been doing that to me. and i have been reading that along with Thornbirds and good writing can make you feel so much, right? Meggie and Ralph’s romance is the so bittersweet and that’s why so freaking beautiful. sigh! You have to read them again if you have already read them, or just buy now!!! It’s worth it and it will make October much prettier.

I also did a post on my fashion blog where i tried to look at date-like and romantic. Check it out here
will stop being lazy and post everyday now. Have a great day. Ciao 🙂

I heart Jim Sturgess

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I fell in love today. I had read One Day but when i saw the movie, i completely fell in love with the character of Dex that i even forgot that i didn’t like Anne Hathaway at all, and ended up loving the movie. Brit actor Jim Sturgess plays Dex in such a charming way that it’s hard not to get taken in. I once had a friend who was a lot like him — dreamy, slightly effeminate, but completely male with a roving eye, with a smile on his face that sway in his walk that felt like he was always drunk. He was the kind who would make any girl feel lucky to be with him — he had that Je Ne se quois quality — you couldn’t really put your finger on it. Dex is like that — good looking, slightly sad, totally loserish, but so charming that it melts your heart, so boyish you want to do everything for him. I feel in love, thanks to Jim Sturgess and it was a lovely feeling. The soundtrack to the movie is also brilliant, esp the theme, which sound too familiar to Amit Trivedi’s score for Lootera. It can’t be a coincidence. Do hear it.

ps. I totally loved his styling too — so retro and french and brit at the same time. Lovely.

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You have to watch the movie. Now.

When you say so much and it’s fun

Writing a romance novel or a script ain’t easy. Even on the days you are super pissed or just not in the mood, you have to imagine scenarios that are romantic, slightly poignant, sexy, sensual and just so damn dreamy. I am in the process of writing my second Mills and Boon, which has a supernatural romance, between a supernatural being (i don’t want to give it away just yet but it’s not a vampire for sure) and a human, and I feel a bit flummoxed every time I need to write a repartee between them — how to make it sexy, funny and cute at the same time and not risk it becoming cheesy. It’s a fine line to tread. I can do romantic, but writing witty dialogue is too freaking tough. I have had to remember all the times I have flirted with men to try and gather around all those witty things I or they may have said. It’s not easy, because if you are witty, it’s all in the moment right? And the other person also gets it out of you. I met this person i had once met, who though was super nice and flirty with me, telling me i looked great, i was beautiful (blah blah), but he couldn’t talk to save his life. After a while it just sounded as if I was talking to myself — saying things and then answering back. It was one of the most boring lunches of my life. While there have been men i have met where the conversation flows easily, interspersed in intervals with the right kind of jibe, or sarcastic comment, and then bam comes a compliment. Those are the best kind of compliments right? It’s about those conversations that make you like the person more as he speaks — you are taken in my everything — they things they like, and the way they laugh. But since I have been married a few years now, and the only romantic conversations i have are with my husband, who thank God is a great one to talk to and still surprises me with his words and actions (he often makes me breakfast and serves it with a ketchup heart which makes me well up), I need to do a little research (not of the real kind of course 😉 ) for my romantic bits. So I do ask people about their conversations, i eavesdrop (bad ol me) and I watch my favourite movie scenes to gain inspiration. Here are some of my most favourite movie romantic repartees. They cheered me up today, hope they work their magic on you too.

Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke have to be on top of this list. I want to kiss him right now.

And obviously the Titanic spitting scene

and this scene from you’ve Got Mail just takes the cake, don’t you think. 🙂

Rains and Romance: why I love sad love stories

The weather in Bombay can’t help but make one romantic. It’s the perfect time to read that romance or watch that romantic movie, which restores your faith in love. Now I have many favourite romantic movies but the best ones are the ones where the couple is mismatched and yet makes it through. I mean what’s the point if two good looking people fall in love – how does it make you all mushy and melancholic? Yes, the best love stories are melancholic and unrequited love is just so perfect, right. I exist as one half of a very happy love story, and I would not want it any other way, because gloom and melancholy only look beautiful in the pages of a book or on the big screen, but when two souls who had no chance survive and come together, I love it. And if it’s all a bit gloomy till then, it makes it even better. Here are my five top romantic books and movies

Babycakes: A fat make-up artist whose passions include food and making dead people look beautiful falls in love with a hunk with a hot girlfriend. When the nasty girlfriend goes away for a bit, our fat heroine makes a plan to try to get the hunk to fall in love with her. So sweet, and all about beauty is what you are inside, Love it. You can actually watch the whole movie on Youtube. Here’s the bit where she takes her hot “boyfriend” to meet her family

Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier is a novel that makes me want to be there. I want to live in that house and feel Rebecca’s ghost all around me. Sounds sadistic right? But really, it’s so beautifully written. A wife who can’t shake off the feeling that her husband’s ex-wife, the gorgeous full-of-life Rebecca is watching her every move. The Goth love story for every season.

My Best Friend’s Wedding had to be on the list. After all, it ends exactly the way it should. Julianne is left by the best friend who marries the best woman. It really tugs at your heartstrings this one – especially because both Jules (Julia Roberts) and Kimmy (Cameron Diaz) are just so adorable. You can’t blame Michael for loving Kimmy, but you feel for Julianne because she’s just so much like you. Awww. Here’s a song from the movie I can’t get enough of…listen to the lyrics (all along you were the one, all the time I never knew). It’s called I’ll be Okay.

4. Mr Big and Carrie’s romance is one we all relate to – that man who makes you feel so much love but so much pain. We all have had one of those. But then he comes around and that’s the best part. One of my favourite scenes and I love her dress too.

5. The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough is a novel which has an unusual love story but one of the most powerful ones in literature. A young girl falls in love with a priest three times her age. He loves her too. As the years pass by, sometimes they give in to their passions, and sometimes they hold everything in. This is a book everyone should read. Brilliant.

Last year, I wrote a short story for an anthology of short love stories published by Grapevine called Shades of Love, which is a really awesome read for all romantics. You can buy it on Flipkart here

A website called alotofpages.com said this of my story — A Pop Tart’s Psychotic Love Story’ by Aastha Atray Banan with its ‘LOOK AT ME!’ title, also has the meat to go with it. We have the story of a girl, unable to forget the lover who has ditched her, pushed to the threshold of madness. She will do what it takes to have him back, even if it means to kill him or his present girlfriend. When she finally walks up to the ex’s house, all guns blazing, she is met with a rather unexpected turn of events…

Here’s a small extract. Hope you like it:

I thought of him every day, and many a days, I used to drive up to his home and just stand outside his window, hoping he would crack open that curtain and see my car and know I was there. Then he would know that for me, it wasn’t over. I had realized it yesterday. A song made me realize that I was still where I was 5 years ago. This wasn’t over. It couldn’t be. The singer was singing about how sometimes love lasts but sometimes it just hurts. And mine was supposed to last. We had met on a cold Delhi winter’s day in Nehru Park – just walking our dogs. My golden retriever had taken more than a friendly interest in his tiny Apso, and as they canoodled, we had looked at each other and shyly introduced ourselves. His name was Karan, and I had compared him to the mythological Karan as soon as I met him — kind, check, generous, check, serious, check, gorgeous, check. According to some legends, Karna had loved Draupadi the whole time but never professed his love. I didn’t want that to happen with us. So I had made the first move. Looking back, maybe that’s where I made my first mistake.

For a while though it seemed as if he wasn’t interested. He was always the one to put the phone down first, the one to break away from long breathless kisses in cold isolated museum corridors, and always the one to cancel plans. He had the upper hand, but I had a feeling he was going to come around. After all, he would see that I was everything he ever wanted.

And then one day, before I knew what was happening, he realized it. Maybe I had secretly thought it will never happen — that I would mope and cry when he told me there was someone else. But that winter, he waited outside my hostel dorm till I got home from class. As I had walked up to him and smiled, he stood really close to me, with barely any space between our bodies for the cold air to pass through and had said “I love you” into my lips – his frosty breath melting into mine. We were a sight that day – standing breathing into each other’s mouths with the white haze around us forming little hearts. Or at least that’s what it looked like to me. It was a heady feeling. We stood like that for seconds but it felt like many hours. Karan’s words had made me forget about everything else. It was like the first time you realize your body registers desire, that current — you know what I mean right?