My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.

"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times

"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine

"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll

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28 March 2005

Every hour of every day I'm learning more

While I'm waiting to update my last post (which can only happen when you WRITE to me) here's something I wrote that you might like. I wrote it tonight, thinking about my life, as I do often, listening to music, my cigarette smoking busily in the ashtray.

I grow older and I learn.

I learn that Chicken Soup For The Soul was right all along and kisses aren’t promises. Or handcuffs.

I learn that sometimes, even though you’ve been brought up to be very honest, sometimes, you have to be quiet about the truth.

I also learn that telling the truth is sometimes the toughest thing in the world, not for the consequences you will suffer but for the expression in the eyes of someone you love.

I learn that it’s not okay to cry, that being truly adult means being able to let a painful lump form at the back of your throat and smile at people and interview others and file stories, like a normal day.

I learn what it’s like not to think only of yourself, how to consider other people. I also learn to think only of myself and how to act in self-interest.

I learn happy things too.

I learn that the fur behind my dog’s ears, especially just after she’s had a bath is unbearably silky and soft and I want to curl up and live there.

I learn how to put on eyeshadow, without looking like a paint-by-numbers experiment.

And in baby-steps, in just-about-crawling, I learn to very slowly unclench my fists and let go. I learn how to take deep breaths, but still feel happy at the brilliant hot white sky, at the pool of sweat forming in my bra, at the fact that the goddamn birds are chirping, that I’m driving with the windows down, that I’m having an interaction with my friends, that I’m flirting and being flirted with, that I’m alive, no matter how cliché that sounds.

I’m learning.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. I alway like these introspective posts. Here is some of what I have learnt:

    i) Happiness and sadness are in fact in our hands. I have been happy about a yellow autumn leaf and sad about a scratch on my camera lens.

    ii) There is no limit to pain and anger one can feel, just like Alistair McLean said in one of his novels which I loved as a child. Also that anger harms the angerer more than the angeree.

    iii) There are people in this world who love you no matter what. And people who you love no matter what.

    iv) Many people live their entire lives without looking up and noticing how beautiful the contrast of green leaves looks against a blue sky on a bright day.

    v) It is possible to love a person more and more every day.

    vi) Pet dogs are genuinely happy to see their families.

    vii) We never notice how great it is just to be healthy till we run into an ailment. I have learnt to be happy for every day spent healthily.

    viii) Even if you are scared, act confident. People usually don't notice body language.

  3. I confess it is one of the nicest blogs i have seen.


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