Book Club Meeting Postponed

The first book club meeting (also known as a meet and greet, for attendees to get to know one another a little…an open house of sorts) has been postponed, partly because the Paper Microphone Cafe is closed for renovations, and partly because one of the organizers is currently in Lahore (that may explain the post below).

The new date has been tentatively set for Sunday, May 10 until further notice. We apologize for the late message, but look at it this way: more time to register for the reading, more time to vote for your favorite if you haven’t already done so already, and more time to spread the word). If you have issues with the date, because they’re coinciding with exams, please let us know at We might shuffle things around so that the book club takes place in hardcore summer.



Impromptu Lahore Reading In The Works…

‘ello Lahoris,

So here’s the thing. We’re throwing an impromptu reading session in Lahore, and yes, there’s barely any time, and yes, we don’t know where it’s going to be or when but that’s where you come in.

If you’re interested, mosey along to this thread and start the planning (forum members only, sadly). This could be the very first in a series at Lahore, after all! Who knows, we might jumpstart a book club here as well? If you’re interested, tell us. It’s the only way we’ll know for sure.

Hope to see you…well, somewhere! 🙂


Online Registration

Interested members can also register on our site. Apparently, the forms are currently unavailable at the cafe. We are imploring participants to only register if they are absolutely certain they will be participating. There were a lot of registrants to the reading, from which only a handful showed up despite confirming.

So please, please save us and yourselves the trouble of being continuously harassed and only register if you’re absolutely, positively, 100% interested and sure about your attendance.


Book Club Pushing Forward

We’ve put up a poll on the main site for anyone interesting in having their voice heard on what Desi Writers Lounge should “officially” start with. We have six options to choose from, and in addition to this we’ve got some forms of interest over at the Paper Microphone Cafe for people interested in relaying their interest to us. We’re starting with 15 people max to keep book discussion maintainable, but might increase in future events.

A quick rundown on your options:

Burnt Shadows (Kamila Shamsie)
The Crow Eaters (Bapsi Sidhwa)
Without Dreams (Shahbano Bilgrami)
In Other Rooms, Other Wonders (Daniyal Mueenuddin)
The Case of Exploding Mangoes (Muhammad Haneef)
The Reluctant Fundamentalist (Mohsin Hamid)

If you’re interested or know of people who are interested, send them over to the cafe and ask them to leave behind their email addresses so we can keep in touch with them (we never spam), and let them know when the club will start and reconvene.

Any questions, comments or points of contention email them in to


Short Story Event: Life’s Too Short

From the Life’s Too Short site:

“The short story is what you make it. As a genre it has been used by writers as varied as Maupassant, Chekhov, Faulkner, Mansfield and Manto. It can be a gem consisting of a few paragraphs or the seed of a larger idea – both The Great Gatsby and The Sun also Rises started life as short stories.

The life’s too short Short Story Prize was conceived to reinvigorate this oft-neglected genre in Pakistan. With the increasing success of short story collections in the global publishing market, they are becoming big news again. Now we would like people to read yours.

Sponsored by the ZZ & Zohra Ahmed Foundation, entry to this competition is free of charge and the prize money is the most substantial for any such endeavour in Pakistan.”

The Prize Money referred to above ranges from Rs 10,000 to 100,000 although of course no true writer writes for money…right? 🙂

“Entries must be emailed to

‘The life’s too short short story prize’ should be written on the subject line of the email

The short story should be the body of the email. Emails with attachments will not be considered.

Each entry must include the name, address, telephone number(s) and email address of the writer

Submission deadline is June 30, 2009.”

The judges for this competition are well known desi authors: Kamila Shamsie, Daniyal Mueenuddin and Muhammad Haneef.

So if you’re interested, you know the details…for further information click the link above. Happy writing!

– T(he)P(owers)T(hat)B(e)