Say the title of the book aloud and you have the gist of the story already. Wisha Wozzariter is a slim book that outlines the entire creative process of writing a story for young wannabe writers and those with an overload of imagination. The great thing about this book is that it does this without making it sound boring or instructional.
Wisha is a ten-year-old who ‘wishes’ she could be a writer but never really does anything about it. A Bookworm emerges from the midst of a book and shows her that she can do what she wants if she sets her mind to it. Of course, with a little help from the Bookworm, she lands up on the Thought Express, takes a trip to the Marketplace of Ideas and finds herself with an Imagination Balloon. Through a number of forays into the magical world of imagination and writing, Wisha finds herself writing a book with a hero and a villain and a style that is uniquely her own.
Wisha Wozzariter is a gem of a book that teaches so much about creative writing although it is masked under the guise of a fun book which is what it appears to be at first glance. It’s ideal for children who want to learn writing but don’t really know how to go about it. Payal Kapadia’s imagination is on fire and should ignite many a keen mind who reads the book.
Of special note is a chapter, What Wisha Saw, where Wisha wears Observation Glasses and sees, hears and feels everything around her with razor sharp senses. The descriptions in this chapter are evocative and extremely well written.
The illustrations by Roger Dahl are quirky and meld with the story perfectly. Some of them, particularly of the Marketplace of Ideas, help build the story along, ensuring there’s a smile on your face as you see them.
What is interesting is that we don’t really see Wisha writing the book or the story she writes. Instead, Payal Kapadia takes us along the journey of a writer, telling us what to expect along the way and shows us that the creative process is complicated but can be such good fun.
Andaleeb Wajid is the author of Kite Strings and Blinkers Off. She started her writing career with short stories for Open Sesame, Deccan Herald’s children’s supplement. Andaleeb has two sons and she hopes to write a book for them before they grow up!