Tuesday, August 11, 2009

THANKS TO YOU, INDIA RETOLD IS TWO

What a journey it has been, from a small beginning, almost like that of a spring that gushes out of the ground but knows not where to go, where its journey is going to take it. But as it begins to flow, even if in a trickle, other waters join it along its path to turn the tiny stream into a rivulet and then a river. Without being joined by others, no stream can last or complete the journey that it began when it sprung forth.

On August 11, 2007, India Retold appeared in the vast world of the web as "Vinod Sharma's World". The first post was an essay that I had written a month or so earlier. "Jinnah's Pakistan at 60" perhaps subconsciously set the direction that the electrons here were destined to flow towards. No wonder then, that a little over two months later, it became "India Retold". This title literally asked to be taken and was, spontaneously, the moment it was suggested. That interesting story can be found here.

For someone who had no real idea as to what blogging was till about a fortnight before this blog came into existence, this journey that was never even thought of, has been fascinating and rewarding. To start with, for many months during which I wrote some of my best posts, there were very few readers. That was discouraging, to say the least. As per Google Analytics, during the first year, there were only 16,752 page views. In the second year, however, the figure has jumped to 84,757. As per Google, there have been a total of 101, 509 page views till now. The counter visible on the blog, however, shows only 91,196 hits. That is because StatCounter fails to capture all hits, for reasons not known to me. I shall, therefore, correct this figure presently.

As these figures show, India Retold is living because of all of you. I am aware that I do not write Bollywood blockbuster type of stuff and that the subjects that energise me will excite a certain type of discerning reader only. Had that not happened and had you not found something worthwhile to engage your attention here, what has been "retold" by me would have remained "untold". In fact, I must mention that the high quality comments - the occasional jarring intrusions notwithstanding - that many of you have spared time and effort to make, have enriched me personally, and given soul to what I have written. Of course, the silent support of those who come here but do not comment cannot be undervalued.

During this journey, I have also made some good friends, whose advice, suggestions and encouragement have helped me to keep keying in my views about subjects and happenings that I feel passionately about, with as much of honesty as I can muster, a task made easier by the absence of any external constraints or pressure. I deeply value these relationships and hope they grow stronger.

At this point, it is appropriate that I mention a thought that has been hovering in my mind for some time. Till now, all the 356 posts that you will find in India Retold have been written by me. I am sure there are many others out there who want to express their honest and frank views on the subjects that I write about. Perhaps, I should open this space for guests who want a platform to share their views on these subjects with fellow netizens. What do you think? This can be a sensitive matter, particularly when a post sent in by someone is not published here for whatever reason.

Should I take this step as India Retold steps into its third year? Will fresh waters help what is now a rivulet along on its journey?