Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dear Mr. Chetan Bhagat

Written in mid-sept.
Uoloaded 6th Oct @ Campusjunkie

Yes, you did it again. And Oh No, I did it again too! I will tell you what my mistake was. Your “3 mistakes of my life”

Let’s start from the starting. I have read all your books, like many of us have. Not because you are a phenomenal writer or anything, but because your books don’t leave me with any after-effects. I don’t have to bother my brain cells at all, because there is nothing to think about. Precisely, the reason why your books are popular is “the universal phenomenon of limited usage of the head.”

But no, then I realize that you are so smart that all I can do is sit back and appreciate. You sell big-time! But not because your “writing skills” are polished, because they clearly are not. This is because your “marketing skills” are refined.

They say you are “different”; now that is an absolutely unheard line. Ha ha! I want to ask what is different about you.
- The campus feel? We have been reading Nancy Drew since we were kids. And Judy blume is so much better a read.
- The ‘only’ Indian writer to have sold abroad? Kavya Vishwanathan, Arundhati Roy, Vikram Seth are American.
- You have done a brave attempt of covering riots? The read through those pages left me angry (on you) and later on realization, I had tears in my eyes, of laughing.
- Your books are cheap? Oh that they are, both monetarily and creatively. But still, I would prefer to hover on blogger-world and read the absolutely brilliant attempts to story-writing. And these folks could do with a little bit of encouragement. And that is not even for 95 bucks, it is for free.
- People “relate” to your books? Obviously, you write in the language we speak. But where is the depth sir?
- The characters are “realistic”? err...
- You are a best-seller? So I should read you?

What I fail to understand is, as a writer, how can you write the same thing over and over again? How can Rupa & co, as a publishing house, publish it in 3 different colored covers? How can you awaken before the release of your books and perform a publicity stunt by going to various colleges around the country and arrange ‘book signing sessions’? For you women are just “cute, pretty, well-dressed, long-nailed, chatter-boxes with white skinny hands for your heroes to grab”? You are an IIT/IIM-A graduate, very good sir, very pleased to meet you. Every-one wants to be you. But then why are you wasting your popularity and talents that could be used in the formulating methods of distance learning for Indian youth by over-rating an already over-hyped concept of sex? What a brilliant example to set……

But then I forget that you are here for the business. Thus, Hearty congratulations, your business has bloomed. Your haphazard hard-work has finally bore fruits Yes, India is shining and you are the rising star.

And yes, some suggestions that you always keep asking us “youth” for. Why don’t you share your skills by becoming a visiting faculty of any business school? If that is too difficult to manage, become a script writer for our fultu-filmy Bollywood, atleast you will do good justice to your work.

Never-the-less, Hail the drama king. *bows*

Signing off,


Cяystal said...

Someone got my sentiments right. =)
Men are not all "staring-at-boobs" or counting how many sexy-woman-are-out-there types.
No seriously.

I <3 U for the article :D

Cяystal said...

And as for the riots part, maybe we can create better images for the riots. His stories are always revolving around an ultra stupid, idiot boy, who finds love, doesn't realize it, realizes it too late, too early and gets fucked up in situations. All about one night stands, and cheapness. O I bow to Cb!.. all hail the mediocrity in his words, just so average,

Anurag said...

I had read this earlier and as I said earlier I don''t agree with it entirely ....

My point was those who read ONLY chetan books....those people won't benefit by doing so. Otherwise for genuine book lovers his first book was great.

One could also argue that he is one novelist who has brought up the intrest of reading to those who didn't have it but then if those peole read only his books then that ain't gonna help .... :)

People should stop giving him attention either way :P

Trinaa said...

post a link to this post on his blog..i'd love to see his reaction. (yes he has a blog..but dont ask me d url..mainu pata nai hai)

Cяystal said...

@ Trinaa,
Maybe he writes a book on Shatab.. a rowdy woman who changed his outlook towards life, with who he eloped, leaving his "pretty curly haired" wife alone! =P

Arv said...

ha ha... precisely why I never read his works :P

rahul said...

I completely concur with your thoughts..nice blog ...keep it up!!!

rain girl said...

bravo!!! you wrote what had been unconsciously nagging me about those books..


Jyotsna Mishra said...

I don't agree with you exactly..
he has some charm in his writing that attracts even a common man who is not fond of reading...i thoroughly enjoyed his 'five point someone '..even the other two are also..not criticisable ..wel said by anurag "he is one novelist who has brought up the intrest of reading to those who didn't have it"..

Express said...

@ Crystal
Mediocrity, the word reminds me of him! ah!

i wudn't have given him any attention, but the jerk that he is , he deserves 2 die un-noticed!

when will people stop running behind hype?

LOL at the 2nd comment. I think I covered that in the article. and yes, I could do a better job than him and I consider myself to be a crappy writer, really crappy.

article or no article,
I lao u!

Express said...

@ Anurag
The 1st paragraph covers that. I read his 2nd book cz I thought he wud do atleast a little better, but no, his graph goes down-wards, 90 degrees downwards!

1. he is not a novelist. He is a shit-ist.
2. 1st book was gr8? The more number of times I read it, the more I hate it. Ideally for ‘great’ books, it shud b the other way round.
3. see, I somewhr agree. Some people who had never touched books wanna now write books cz he is their ideal. Which is both good and bad for the obvious reasons.
4. I wudnt give a fuck abt a jerk of him if he wasn’t made so much hype of


@ Tri
Haha, I cud do that if it made any difference to the world.

Express said...

@ Crystal
Dood, usko angrezi nahi aati! He doesn’t deserve that wifey, no he doesn’t!

And me? Elope? With him?
I know my love-life sucks, but Inne bure dinn bhi nahi aaye yaar…

@ Arv
I always knew you were smart.

Express said...

@ Rahul
Welcome to the blog
And yes I shall..


@ Rain girl
Remorse it is. My own not any one elses.

Welcome welcome,
Rather I shall thank you for reading through :-)

Express said...

@ Jyotsna
The charm is the language dear. And as I said, the ‘universal phenomenon of limited usage of the head’.
Does not deserve criticism? 3 mistakes? God has embraced a lot of patience upon u.
Refer to my reply to him.

See, whatever I say hardly makes a difference. But this is opinion voicing. He doesn’t deserve all the admiration, no sir.

Thanks for the visit.

Rushabhh Gandhi said...

The Fantastic Other Side!
The Fantastic Real Side!

As your post goes..i truly agree this a publicity stunt by Shatabdi so that Chetan takes her character in the new book!:P lollss :D

The Seeker said...

Something what I had in my mind about Chetan,,, Well It's a shame that a country likes us, celebrates Chetan Bhagat, as the national best-seller, when we have best writers all through the blog world and in the publishing world... But Shatabdi, one thing why I think he can be praised was, He made many IT professionals who were all glued to fatty fatty It books, read Fiction, of cos cheap fiction, but you cannot deny that.. he made a few read and the few read him and celebrate him for all wrong reasons..

Swayam said...

that was real real real hard on him... yup he does come with trash... repeatitive with all his novels... but I guess reiteration always help...

Express said...

@ Rushabhbh
Publicity stunt, yes, thats exactly what this is.
My attempt to woe the man in detest.

@ Seeker
I agree [with a heavy heart].
not just IT ppl, but even general random collg go-er. But giving him the place if god is what I'm against. And I'm also against giving a lot of un-due importance to him. so, maybe we shud just quit.


Express said...

@ Swayam
Nahi re beta, I wrote this right after I had read 3 mistakes, you know.. so the hatred ubhar k aaya hai :D

nahi toh I'm indifferent abt random losers,
well, usually I am :D

Alok said...

My question to you after reading this is: Why?

Why are you so concerned?

I have to agree that Bhagat's later books were stupid and mediocre (I put down "One Night at the Call Center" after 10 pages,) but "Five Point Someone" was a book of the time.

In these times, "getting into IIT" is more important than "becoming something". In fact, "getting into IIT" has become synonymous with "being someone", which is definitely not the case.

And this is not just the case with IITs, any career line you choose, the general attitude is,

"Bas ek baar bade college mein chale jaaoon, life toh settled hai."

There is a lack of ambition, in that there is no creativity, no desire to make something that truly has value.

That is the reason why students get confused and lack motivation when they reach the place of their dreams. They discover a whole new freedom, in which they choose what they really want and then might go ahead and destroy their own careers.

This is precisely what Chetan Bhagat wrote down. No wonder the book was successful. Everyone could associate with it, and since it was targeted at an average college-going audience, it had to be in plain simple English (Which you term as average). Munshi Premchand was famous precisely because of his simple language and his grip on reality.

If Bhagat's later books are idiotic (which they really are), he will lose his audience, and face obscurity soon. People aren't that stupid.

Why the need for you to come up with this?

Express said...

@ Alok
I did this, because I was asked to review him. you know that.

3 things.

1. he sells his books by saying that they r written for 'everyone'. so stop giving me the crowd jazz

2. 5ps is the book of the time. hmm. one time. that is it.

3. I will write w/e i wanna. It is sounding absurd now coz it was written ages ago when the time ws apt. Just din find the time 2 upload it.

Superrrnickkk...!!!! said...

well i loved this post..!!! share the same feeling towards him..!! even i had written a post on his way of best selling at

nice one :)