03 December, 2020

Slow Water, Paddle Faster

A hack’s progress through magazines—an assemblage of ideas, words and photos—and how they need more of them in these times

Amit Haralkar
Slow Water, Paddle Faster

It was perhaps inevitable that I would end up a journalist, but I have a magazine to thank for it. We grew up with newspapers piled up around us, literally. My father, who founded and edited an Oriya newspaper, got them delivered to Bhubaneshwar from all over: The Statesman, Amrita Bazar Patrika, and The Telegraph from Calcutta, Hindustan Times and The Ind­ian Express from Delhi, The Times of India from Bombay, The Hindu from Madras, and of course, every newspaper that was printed in Orissa. They came at different hours and would be found all over through the day. But the following morning, they would all be gathered and stacked neatly in their designated shelves.

I read a lot of these. I earned my pocket money by maintaining my father’s reference library—yes, there used to be those. It involved cutting out the articles he had ticked and pasting them into files subject-wise. But I never quite liked the newspapers. They were shabby and chaotic, the stories felt littered on the pages with no regard to...



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