img-20161230-wa0000By writing about others, we get to transcend our own thoughts, our own worlds, our own lives, and experience another’s. This is how we connect with the rest of humanity, through a story. Empathy teaches you to look at life through someone else’s lens. And when you start looking at life through someone else’s perspective, you unleash an infinite stock of stories to write. Tulsi Dharmarajan, Katha Utsav mentor and an expert in product management and design, shared with the Katha Utsav National finalists in her intensive session- “Think-a-thon“, the importance of empathy and how empathy expands our imagination. In the light of recent events of cruelty towards animals, Tulsi encouraged the young writers to empathize with animals and write a story imagining a life through the eyes of any animal of their choice. “Empathy is an important quality for writers. If writers don’t empathize with others, the only story they can write would be about themselves”, said Tulsi. The session included a beautiful exercise of design thinking and team work where each group of writers had to paint the story of their animal and connect it with their team members’ stories. Take a look at the riot of colors and memories this awesome workshop created:  https://youtu.be/D87nUkFPrtY

Special tip from Tulsi for all aspiring writers: Empathize. Stories will just start coming to you automatically.