INTRIGUING WOMEN, my forthcoming short story collection.
This is, if there ever was, an age of women. Gone are the days when men could do whatever they wanted to, according to their own sweet wills. If they manage to have their way even now, at times, they have to work very hard and determinately to achieve that end. Women are changing the flavour of life on planet earth just as they are changing themselves in many of their basic roles. The process of this change involves joys and hopes for better times, no doubt, but it also brings about some dark moments in the lives of the progeny of Adam and Eve. Gendered roles in clear gradations of pink and blue are now a thing of the past. We are now treading a greyer path where sometimes the excitement of bearing the clear identities of the pinks and blues is absent. Whether this change spells real gain only the future will tell. But in the struggle for this newer existence is visible human life as it now appears. The stories in this collection contain this struggle. Intriguing women have emerged to take up the challenge. Will they or won’t they is what the pages of INTRIGUING WOMEN contain.
INTRIGUING WOMEN is a collection of short stories that captures these changing times for women and the men who are related to them. The collection is linked thematically because each story is about a woman that is unique, creating a different world for herself, carving out her own path on which she is to progress and encountering her own set of problems.
The stories are realistic, comic, tragic, on daring themes and presented each in a different mode of narration. Though most of the women are Indian, there are some from the Western world. Human nature and social reality stand hand and hand on the pages of this collection. It is human nature that seems to prevail ultimately.
I have tried to arrest the imagination of the reader in a way that these stories are not easily forgotten. The stories assembled in this collection have taken several years of my time and attention; they are a slice of my perception of life converted into fiction. Come and see India and the world through my eyes and notice what a different place we inhabit in today because of women.
Lakshmi Raj Sharma