Last Saturday, Milton Queah’s book The Third Wave and Other Stories was launched at the Press Club, Guwahati, in the presence of Dr Hiren Gohain and Kula Saikia. Other prominent writers from the region namely Dhruba Hazarika, Mitra Phukan and Srutimala Duara were also present on the occasion.
Managed by Tattva Creations and supported by the Northeast Writer’s Forum, the event began with a short note by Mitra Phukan who informed guests about how the Northeast Writer’s Forum aims to provide encouragement and support to one another so that true talent can thrive across the eight states. Their members include Northeast writers based in the region and outside it. What is most unique about this forum is that there is no other literary forum in India that spreads across so many states.
Next, Kula Saikia, Guest of Honour, shared a few words about the book, ‘The way he has narrated the natural setting is remarkable. Very often, we find that nature is described very beautifully in poetry but it’s rare in short stories.’ He also went on to share with guests that the length of a short story, which is often discussed, is immaterial; the main focus should be on the style and content. ‘Short stories are like windows in a house through which you can view the outside world. So we can say that short stories give writers a lot of possibilities to express themselves and it is up to the writer to utilize the same.’ Dr Hiren Gohain, Chief Guest, also spoke at length about the stories, ‘The stories are not perfect but there is a lot of potential. He does have a good command over the language and does not approach life with pre-conceived notions.’
Lastly Milton Queah spoke about how the book took shape, ‘The stories have been written over a long period of time and it has been a struggle. At times, I felt that it wouldn’t see the light of day as age would catch up with me. I thank my publishers for pursuing me with constant calls and messages otherwise it may not have happened. I also thought about changing bits and pieces of some stories but then I decided against it.’
The Third Wave and Other Stories is available online.