(VM) Nine Agra teenagers to collectively pen book

Agra, May 25 (IANS) Nine teenagers – seven girls and two boys – are to collectively produce a volume of short stories before the Taj Literature Festival in December.

The lucky nine – Kuhu Goyal, Yusura, Priyanshi, Aniruddha, Yashi, Amrita, Subundhu, Bhavya and Kuhoo Srivastav – were selected after a fortnight-long grooming camp attended by 60 teenagers. They were then put through a three-day workshop conducted by popular author Hemant Kumar and his wife Ruchira Mittal, who will continue to mentor them till the book is ready

The workshop, conducted on the initiative of businesswoman Ranjana Bansal, concluded Friday.

Scores of budding teenage writers had attended the grooming camp that was supervised by Neelam Mehrotra, Poorna Verma, Namita Taluqdar, Roli Sinha, Arpita Chatterjea and Archita Dutta, who chiselled and polished the writing skills of the children.

At the end of the inaugural Taj Literature Festival here in February, the Young Writers of Agra group was formed to promote literature by young people.

Hemant Kumar said the seven girls and two boys selected to write the short story collection would continue to work under his tutelage.

He said writing skills could not be passed on in just a couple of days, and the group would be encouraged to learn, over time: “Also these kids must inculcate a passion for reading,” he said.

Many of the young writers said Chetan Bhagat was a role model they would like to emulate.

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