My praise bag

This is my gunny bag of unexpected, unsolicited kind words.

On a dull day I savor any or all of these strings of words. Sometimes I just read one, sometimes, two…

  1. I’d wish you great success and even more for being a woman who writes her mind.
  2. “As much as a prolific writer that you are, you are also an immaculate speaker with flawless flow, fiery too, way to go! stay tuned!!”
  3. “For you dear one Rumi’s Gamble Everything for Love (beware of mean-spirited road houses!). You are young,  beautiful, spiritually and intellectually gifted. One of my students from Turkey gave me something to protect against the evil eye. I wish I had it with me to give to you.”
  4. “Thanks Rochelle for that prompt reply. I have now read the “”sample page”” that IWP puts out and I must say I am blown. In those public forums like Caferati or TGS one does not get a true feel of talent. But from what I recall (my memory too is erratic) of your writing then to now it is like a mature pod burst and the beans spilled out. Very impressive particularly since you transcend country and culture and go straight into the sudden surprises in language and thought that makes the reader stop and reread and wonder in awe. You will go far. I will send you one of my stories shortly as soon as I find the link.”
  5. “Hie Rochelle! Have been meaning to write to you. I happened to get to red your poems in your book. I absolutely am a big fan of yours now! One poem I particularly loved is ‘Last Laugh’ that’s the kind of writing I read for. I am so not able to articulate how much I have liked that one.”
  6. “Rochelle has developed a strong individual voice, has acquired a good grasp of plotting, delineates nuanced characters and often tells a very interesting and almost always an off- beat tale. Fantasy and magic realism are her forte. Her poems are strong in their imagery and in their native flavour.”
  7. She is a dedicated writer, hardworking and very committed to improving her craft. She thinks deeply about her writing and works diligently to make it shine. She is open to sincere and intelligent feedback. As a fellow writer, she is also very committed to giving honest and well-thought feedback when sought and is very aware of the rules of giving constructive feedback. It is always a pleasure to read her work and always an advantage to receive a critical response to one’s work from her.
  8. “I presented a gynocritical reading of poem Skirt today at Mumbai University. It was a presentation I delivered as part of my Pre-Ph.D. course and our prof. Dr. Shobha Ghosh loved it. Your poem Skirt!! She asked me to share the name of the poem and the poetry collection as well as the name of the poet with the entire batch when I told her that not only Skirt, but many more poems form the collection manage to create similar magic. Luckily, I was carrying your book and my batch mates skimmed through various poems many of them have loved your style and the way you touch upon difficult themes with great ease”
  9. “I found the use of language on your blog very interesting. It’s very smooth, lucid and leaves one with a sweet aftertaste( bittersweet yes). A friend of mine, actually suggested about your blog to me. And since I always look on various ways to improve my literary abilities, I found your blog rather invigorating.”
  10. “Acting, motivational speaker, Jennifer Lawrence looks, pied Piper of the kids, workshop tycoon. Hay bun, Hay bun the list goes on. Haan waise tum sexy shark ho. I always knew you would be a big player in future :* Aur Abhi toh future aya bhi nahi. Nah. You are a lambi race ka Lamborghini. Not even ghoda. A shark in a dolphin suit.”
  11. I absolutely loved your story. Your characters are profoundly interesting and the story is so touching! Reminded of Arundati’s writing. Every word, sentence is so well thought out and written. You will be the greatest writer of all times. You are perfect in looks, conscience and outlook in life!. Happy Feast (Nuvem)!
  12. Thoroughly enjoyed reading the story, Rochelle. This so reflects our fast-paced lives.. keep delighting us with more of such good writing…
  13. Which is why I say, Rochelle’s stories are extraordinary – they are about the day to day happenings in and around us, which we tend to overlook, but meet them in the face, once we read her stories. The pathos of life in an achievement driven world, are far reaching and may have very dire results in human relationships. The truth is brought out very skillfully in this short story. Absolutely beautiful!! Quite engaging and soulful! Keep up the good work Rochelle.
  14. What a pleasure to meet such a wonderful young writer last night. The evening was magical. Dan and I were both so impressed with your lovely, lyrical prose. Death’s memoir was especially moving—so clever and wonderfully paced and filled with the ache of human striving. You are the real deal, my dear. Much, much luck to you, and safe travels!
  15. That his father thinks that you are a very good poet. (i.e. Arvind Krishna Mehrotra, said by a friend known to Palash.)
  16. Hi Rochelle. I heard your stunning words at Crossover Poems…and became a fan of your poetry almost instantly!!!!
    It was an absolute pleasure listening to you… Keep writing forever and more.
    That evening i was hanging on to every word of yours…you write so beautifully Rochelle.
  17. I may sound like a proud mama, but the Rosh to whose poetry I would say “Structure, Rosh!”, complete this thought today… she read some smooth, finely-polished pieces with such complex ideas in the most accomplished way and I was proud of her!!!
  18. There are certain voices that float around you. You try to bring them closer to your heart. But they don’t. Then there are voices that reach the deepest part of your heart and unearth all those feelings you feel while writing. These voices inspire. Your words are that voice.
  19. You have a Beautiful Mind Rochelle. God bless you. Keep writing…  Let there be words! And let they fill all the gaps in your life!
  20. u r one of the most brilliant and great poetesses, i am honored to be your Arabic Voice. i ve got a lot of great feed back about your poems.
  21. I must say that I’ve really been impressed with your poems, which are of a level of lyric complexity and seriousness that I haven’t seen much in Indian poetry! / You my dear are the true revelation, for the way you transfixed the crowd with your singing. And such a good performer of your own poems! The quirky, irreverent lyricism you have at your disposal is a new thing, not found in Indian poetry, and I’m so glad to hear its stirrings.
  22. Rochelle, loved your award winning poem. Depth, finesse, surprise and beauty in the language. Go, girl, go!
  23. Rochelle Potkar, whose darkly humorous *The Metamorphosis of Joe Pereira* I read with immense delight, twice. And then realized *she also writes poetry. *It’s a conspiracy, I tell you. They use fine prose as a gateway drug and, next thing you know, your eyeballs are glazing over with an “obscura of clouds, near-deaths, hydrological dynamics” and it’s too late and you need rehab).
  24. I discussed your anti-war poem (War Specials) that won you runner’s up prize in poetry festival. Your layered portrayal of brutal reality of subjugation is really worth admiring.
  25. *facepalm* The way you have embraced haibun & the form has embraced you, is something that I marvel at everyday. You bring a freshness to it, that I hope to achieve some day.
  26. I read your poem, To Daraza. Eliotian imagery and surrealistic images in the poem make it a really beautiful poem. You’re truly an emerging voice from India. Proud of you. Keep up the good work.
  27. Getting mentored by you was the best thing that ever happened to me. Watching you edit haikus in was literal magic. I’m so grateful for everything. I hope you have an amazing year! 
  28. Happy birthday to one of the best mentors I had the fortune of meeting @rochellepotkar
    I wish I could have more of those mentor-seatings with you. Iowa gave very few of them. You’re a crazy wonderful talented poet btw! And I can’t help but realllly look up to you! 
  29. Happy birthday, @rochellepotkar !! Your mentorship in person at IWP and over email after has been invaluable to me as a writer. It’s evident you care so much about students and about the craft of writing. You’re amazing!! It’s an honor to know you!!
  30. Rochelle Potkar excels in Haiku and Haibun. Very talented. And creativity requires the Feminine principle. It’s Ma Saraswati acting through us. So we all who connect creatively have the Feminine mystic acting through us.
  31. I have read the story twice now and as always I am struck by the way you get into the skin of your characters. It’s a gift not many possess and as I dip my feet into fiction, I realise how difficult it is to do especially when you make it look so smooth, so flawless. Even with the striking imagery, the fluid narrative, and the heat when things start getting tense – it’s your characters that bring to me a sense of awe for your writing.As far as the science behind the story goes – you have got it pitch-perfect (as far as my very limited understanding goes). You have done your research and it shows. I remember the time that you were researching for this story – or I think I do.
  32. Sensitively written, I loved your ‘Saturnalia’ very much. Wanted you to know how my admiration keeps on growing for you. I feel your work stands much above our writing. (JM.)
  33. “But I managed to re-watch the conversation on facebook. It leaves me speechless. What best summarizes this, for me, is covered in Rochelle’s lines: “…like a diary found in a landfill/In a post-apocalyptic utopia” (poet from Madagascar, via the great AK)
  34. Hi! Read the stories in “Bombay Hangovers”. Enjoyed each of them. I was fascinated by the language, the turn of phrase, the details of description and the brilliant confidence of narration that characterize your stories. Enviable style, I must say. Congratulations
  35. I bought your book online and read it. Wow✨ Such powerful and beautiful stories. 🌺I loved each and every one of them! I have to get a book signed from you. Congratulations, really. It’s beautiful what you did. (SD)
  36. Memories like this! ‘Skirt’ by Rochelle Potkar still remains a favourite 💗📚 People often talk about revisiting a book and reading it with a completely different perspective… well poetry offers different perspectives even without the touch of time. So when revisiting a profound poem after a period of all these years, the poem actually stands taller than time by revoking all the older prespectives and opening up newer interpretations as well. The interplay is then a delightful experience for fond reader of the poem to relish! Thank you writing this revolutionary poem my poetry fairy 😘 (PP)
  37. Her poems are out of this world/She’s way ahead than the rest./Brilliant./Compared to most poets she’s far far better. (RRP)
  38. Rochelle your poems are deep and the words and expressions you use are so inspired to bring out whatever mood or emotion you portray. I also admire the clever questions you put to Selma when you interviewed her. I have high regards for you. [YVE]