Win a 10-day Literary Tour of England!

Revolving around the astoundingly successful debut novel of the Guptara Twins, Conspiracy of Calaspia (Insanity, Book 1), an international competition has been launched for young people born in 1982 or after (age 26 or younger). All you need to do for a chance to win is read their book and write an essay.

Now is your chance to read this adventure in paperback and try your hand at winning a tour of England's literary sites. Your essay will be judged based on its creativity and originality.

Do you like reading? Writing?

READ ... Conspiracy of Calaspia

WRITE ... a 1,000 word essay

WIN ... a fabulous England trip!

An international panel of judges will select the top ten winners – each will get a literary tour of England from July 16 to 26, 2008, and a partial scholarship to the Triennial Summer Institute of the C. S. Lewis Foundation, July 27-August 9, 2008: a week each at Oxford and Cambridge (UK).

There are one hundred runner-up prizes.

For full details visit http://www.calaspia-competition.com



Note: Some of the following rules are subject to amendments. Legally binding rules governing the UK tour itself will be published along with the results of the Story Competition.
 
1. Individuals born on or after January 1, 1982, are eligible to enter this story competition.

2. Write a scene before the events of Conspiracy of Calaspia in which Bryn and his friends go on a "Questus" (an imaginary adventure)!

3. Each story should be no longer than 1000 words. The story must be written in English and must be the entire creation of the person submitting the work.

4. The story must be sent along with the Entry-Fee Waiver Form printed at the end of the Competition Edition of the book. Additional Forms can be obtained from the organizers.

5. The criterion for evaluating stories will be originality and creativity.

6. Submission of the work implies, and will expressly state, waiver of the entrant's copyright in the work. This is for the sole purpose of being able to use the Winners' work on Calaspia-related publicity including on the internet. Wherever the work is displayed by the organisers of the Competition, The name of the person who originally wrote the story will be clearly indicated.

7. Stories must be submitted in typescript or by e-mail, double-spaced, leaving at least one inch of space at the top and bottom of each sheet, as well as at least one inch of space at the right and left hand of each sheet.

8. Entries should have a random selection of ten letters and numbers (e.g. 654THREE21) on the top left hand side of the first page of the story. The same random selection of ten letters and numbers should be provided on a separate sheet of paper on which the entrant certifies that the submission is her/ his unassisted work, renounces copyright on the story, and provides her/ his date of birth and contact details. (For a sample, click here). Exactly the same format should be followed for entries by e-mail.

9. The deadline for the receipt of all entries is 5.00 p.m (Central European Time) on 15 January 2008. Any entries received after this time will not be considered for the contest.

10. The top ten or more winners will be given a ten-day Literary Tour of the UK in two groups (i) Under 19 years old and (ii) over 19 years old. These Winners will be from the open competition, as well as from certain reserved categories. For example, one of the Winners' places is reserved for a Dalit from India. The exact list of these reserved and open places will be available at the official Competition website ( www.Calaspia-Competition.com) by September 15, 2007. The organisers reserve the right, unilaterally and at their sole discretion, to increase the number of winners.

11. One hundred Runners-up will be awarded a coupon which they can exchange for a free copy offor Volume 2 of the Insanity Saga from Nivedit Good Books.

12. The Winners will be announced on 31 March 2008, and they will be responsible for making all the relevant preparations (see below) for participating in the Literary Tour of the UK in Summer 2008 (exact dates, itinerary and the rules governing the tour will be announced along with the results on the Website: www.Calaspia-Competition.com)

13. Employees or relatives of any of the employees of Tara Press and related entities in New Delhi, India; of Starbloom Ltd. (Ireland), of Sought After Media Ltd (USA), and of Nivedit Good Books Distributors (India) are not eligible to enter. Relatives are defined for purposes of this competition as: siblings, children or spouse.

14. No correspondence will be entertained or entered into regarding the procedures or results of the Competition.

15. Names of the members of the international panel of judges for the Competition will be available on the Competition Website, and the decision of the judges will be final and binding.

16. The winners of the Competition will be given a 10-day literary tour of the United Kingdom. The tour is subject to the following conditions:

a. The Winners must be either of age (i.e an age where they are considered adults both in their own country and in the UK) or they must provide a letter from their parent/guardian permitting their ward to travel on their own under the supervision of the Guides for the Tour. Click here to download the proper form for the Parent's/ Guardian’s permission. Winners will need to provide the name and contact details of a Local Guardian in the UK who agrees to take responsibility for their good behaviour during the Literary Tour as well as take general responsibilities in loco parentis.

b. The Winners must agree to follow the instructions of the Guides on the Literary Tour at all times. If they fail to do so, they will be immediately dismissed from the Literary Tour and, in the case of minors, handed over to the responsibility of their Local Guardian. Adult Winners who fail to follow the instructions of the Guides on the Literary Tour will be immediately dismissed from the Literary Tour and will then be on their own.

c. The Winners must ensure that they have sufficient travel and health insurance for the duration of their time in the U.K. The organisers are not responsible for providing information or advice on such matters. 

d. The Winners have the entire responsibility for ensuring that they hold a valid Passport from their country of residence. Usually, the validity of the Passport has to extend six months beyond the dates that any visitor proposes to spend in the U.K.

e. The Winners have the entire responsibility for obtaining a suitable Visa to the UK. The only responsibility of the Organisers is to provide the official Letter of Invitation to the U.K. The Organisers take no responsibility for anything else to do with applying to the Embassy or Consulate of the U.K. in the country of residence.

f. The Winners have the entire responsibility for their own travel and related arrangements to reach up to one of the designated Points for joining the Literary Tour. Generally in the case of most countries these Points will be the International Airports serving your national capital. Exceptions are in India, where the “point” is Mumbai, India, and the USA, where the “Point” is JFK airport, New York, NY, USA. Exceptions for other nations will be announced along with the tour itinerary and rules.

g. Winners must ensure that they carry with them at least UK£50 for any emergency, along with any medical supplies that they need for themselves for chronic ailments or minor matters such as colds and coughs.

h. Winners must ensure that they bring sufficient rain-related wear as well as sufficient warm clothing to protect themselves from the unpredictable weather in the UK, even though the Literary Tour will take place at what is usually a very good time of the year from the viewpoint of the weather. 
 
17. By entering the Competition, entrants signify their acceptance of these rules which are subject to amendment and updating on the Competition website. The rules published on or before 15 November 2007 will be final.
 
18. This contest is being organised by Nivedit Good Books Distributors Pvt Ltd., Ivy Cottage, Landour, Mussoorie (UA)-248179, India, which is responsible for all matters concerning the contest. The liability of Tara Press, New Delhi, is restricted to publishing the Competition Edition, that of Sought After Media LLC to promoting the novel and the contest in the USA, that of South Asian Resources to promoting the contest and the novel in Canada, and that of Starbloom Ltd. to organizing the UK tour. Disputes, if any, shall be governed by Indian laws and subject to jurisdiction of Delhi courts - even though in theory there should be no dispute possible because entrants to the Competition sign an entry form specifically waiving all rights to litigation regarding the Competition. 
 ______________________________________



Conspiracy of Calaspia

Prologue

Slayer with a Cause

 
Spray from the waterfall moistened his suntanned skin.  Sand skipped through the air, the granules sticking uncomfortably where the water had dampened him.  This rare gust of wind ruffled the Dwarf’s mane of hair and sent the golden curls dancing around his massive shoulders.

There it was again – the bellow of Nurgor war-cries.  Galar leaned further on the head of his axe, surveying the lay of the land with a myopic squint.

‘Jevel,’ the Dwarf cursed under his breath.  He had forgotten his spectacles, yet again.  His axe, on the other hand, he didn’t even need to think about, strapped as it was to his back – unless it was in his chunky hands, like it was now.

Galar jumped to run and stopped on one foot, poised between darting back to his hut to retrieve his spectacles, and investigating at once.  If battle were to come, it was always a compromise between looking fierce and seeing clearly.  The decision was made in an instant as the momentum of his charge conquered considerable inertia.  Then Galar was flying down the mountainside, bare feet flinging up sand like a camel.  Short, quick strides carried the warrior through the desolate terrain that was a blur to either side of him.

Were they trees or Nurgor?  Galar had lived here for years, and yet it was impossible to judge between vegetation and monsters without his glasses.  The land had a mind of its own.  And it liked to change its mind frequently.  The Dwarf ignored the hazy blobs and kept his course, figuring that if they had been Nurgor, they would either be rushing him or fleeing by now.

The glaring sun suddenly faded for a moment, throwing the mountain range around him into gloom.  Galar had just mounted the top of a hill, and it was at this moment that he found what he was looking for.  No Nurgor were in sight, but their prey was.  Out of breath by now, and cursing for the hundredth time the climate of the land he had made his home, Galar hurried to the stranger’s side.

‘Friend!’ he called.  ‘S’alright, yer safe!’

As he approached, the figure became, in Galar’s sight, with ever more certainty, a man.

Was he dead?

After throwing a wary look around him, Galar stooped to look at the man.  He was in a nasty state, battered and bloody – however, miraculously all in one piece.  Alive, but barely so.  Although the fight had not taken place all that long ago, the man’s wounds had already dried.  That wasn’t much of a surprise in this accursed heat.

A sigh escaped the man’s lips.  He tried to sit up, but collapsed under the strain and gasped in pain.

‘Monsters,’ he finally stammered.

‘O’course,’ Galar rumbled.  ‘What did yeh expect, butterflies?’

The Dwarf felt sorry for the man, but what had he expected?  Anyone nosing around this part of Calaspia was asking for trouble.  It was home to the worst of creatures, although thankfully it no longer supported certain predators.  A ludicrous thought popped into Galar’s mind, and he chuckled at the notion of the Ministry for Ecology or whatever the Numenii now called it, labelling the monsters here ‘endangered species’.  No, nobody was sad that these beasts were dying out.  And no one regretted obliterating the monstrous Ostentum.

‘Come on, let’s get yeh outta here,’ the Dwarf said gently to the whimpering man, ‘before they return.’  He would get to ask him who he was and what stroke of insanity had led him here later.  But the man resisted Galar’s powerful arms, shaking his head and muttering, as if to ward off a nightmare.

‘Sun must’ve got to yeh head, but we’ll have yeh sorted in no time.  Here, this’ll help.’  Galar fumbled around in his beard until he found what he was looking for.  Retrieving a crystal vial, Galar bent over his wounded charge and prepared to administer the liquid.  Again a feeble protest ensued, and so instead the Dwarf cradled the man’s head in one enormous hand and helped him to sit up.  The man took several gulps of the scorched air.  His eyelids fluttered as he fought to keep them open.  He opened his mouth to speak and his cracked lips struggled to form the words.

‘Not – Nurgor,’ he panted.  ‘Worse.’

Galar frowned.  There wasn’t much worse in existence, not in the Visible World at any rate.  He looked uneasily around him.

‘I can deal with whatever lives here,’ he said.

‘Os … ten,’ the man choked in a barely audible way.  His voice shook.  ‘Ostentum.’

Galar froze.

‘Yeh must be mistaken.’

‘No!’  Suddenly the man was caught in a fit of jerks and his eyes rolled madly in their sockets.  Galar gently slapped his patient’s cheek and grabbed a different, bigger flask that was tied to his belt.  He sat the man up once more as soon as the fit had subsided and supplied him with water.  The man spluttered and coughed before returning to moaning.  This time his voice was clearer.

‘Leave me!  It’s too late … save yourself!’

‘Nah, it’s you who needs the savin’,’ Galar asserted.

Before he could continue, the man grabbed his shoulder and hauled himself up.  ‘You don’t understand!  It’s a trap!  Begone, Dwarf!’  Galar moved the handle of his axe to a readily accessible point.  ‘I am bait; why do you think they didn’t kill me?  Ostentum are at the Pinnacle of Insanity, and the Master knows you will foil his plans.’

‘Who is this master?’ Galar asked sharply.

The man tried to say something, but his body was wracked by another spasm, and he fell back into the dirt, foaming at the mouth.

Galar’s wide features became a mask of worry.  The man lifted his head, neck chords straining, and uttered a final syllable.  ‘Flee!’

All at once the air bristled with noise and movement.

‘Yer comin’ with me,’ Galar said firmly.  He was going to kneel and pick up his wounded companion before he realised how very close the enemy was.  Instead he leapt to his feet, swinging the golden axe in a swishing arc around his head before charging the foe.

Nurgor, not Ostentum, he noted with relief, catching sight of horns and fur.  The feeling was short-lived as he saw their numbers.  Even he could not last long against such forces.  He realised with sudden hope that this part of the countryside was, surprisingly, the same as it had been some days ago, when last he had visited.  If he could only reach the other side of the pass before they did, all would be well … he would be able to challenge them in close-combat one at a time, in which case he could easily hold his own.

Galar ran, wiping sweat from his brow and thinking as he did so that he should have brought his spectacles after all.  Dismay slowed his approach when he saw that the Nurgor had beaten him to the narrow passage.  Then he saw that they had him surrounded, too.  A trap indeed.

The Dwarf wasted no time in getting down to business.  He would probably be able to cut an escape route through the enemy for himself, but what of the man?  Bellowing a cry of his own, Galar launched himself at the Nurgor.  His advance was welcomed with a volley of stones and spears.  Although he was unable to see sharply, his senses were keen.  None of the missiles took him down, and the few stones that did find their target only angered him the more.  Just in time he caught sight of another weapon hurtling towards him from a different direction and jumped aside.  It was enough to avoid the javelin impaling him, but not enough to miss it altogether.  Searing pain shot along the top of his right arm and shoulder where the sharp metal inflicted a glancing wound.  But it did not stop him.

The monsters came into full focus just before he made contact.  Anatomically they resembled men, but were taller and broader, with massive heads that jutted directly forward from their necks, giving them a stooping appearance.  The first few of them wavered before the muscled man bearing down on them, but it was too late.  Several deft swings and slices of the axe left just as many Nurgor dead on the ground.  Galar turned to the right and met his next opponents, who fought boldly now that the Dwarf had run into their midst.  He fought mightily – and beautifully too.  Whereas usually axes only chop and hack, Galar wielded his golden tool with fluidity and elegance despite its great wide head, swinging the grand weapon like an extension of his body.  Its burnished surface glinted in the cruel sun, flashing with each savage stroke, gleaming despite the blood it drew.

Across the plain, the wounded man watched in amazement as the Nurgor melted before Galar’s onslaught.  Even several of them at a time were no match for him.  The fearsome creatures fell before his blade like blades of grass to a scythe, a parody of battle.

But something wasn’t quite right.  Galar could feel his beloved axe growing heavy in his hands.  His breath came in ragged bursts with every stroke of the weapon now; his legs were becoming leaden and slow compared to some minutes ago.  The graze on his shoulder stung, bringing tears to his eyes.  The Dwarf could feel his movements becoming sluggish and tired.

Suddenly Galar realised what must have happened.  Poison!  With a roar he cut down the nearest foe, before retreating to higher ground.  He brought his shoulder to his mouth and desperately sucked at the wound.  Along with the blood he drew into his mouth he thought he tasted something bitter.  Galar spat in disgust and looked up in time to parry a downward blow.  He kicked the beast in the stomach, briefly feeling coarse fur beneath his foot as it stumbled down the incline, and quickly removed throwing-axes from straps on his back.  These had small heads, many times lighter than his golden axe, but with long handles.  Before the Nurgor could get back to its feet, its skull was split with one swing of Galar’s arm.  The Dwarf’s muscles knotted as he threw the other two axes at the nearest of his opponents, both of which hit the dust.

Sensing their victim’s weakening power, the Nurgor surged up the rise in a triumphant assault.  Galar struggled to fight off the first few blows before a heavy stave found its way through his defences and knocked him into darkness.

*

‘Master, your humble servant reports: we have the Dwarf.’

It was a triumphant call, even if the figure who proclaimed this news looked in no condition to be happy.  Though battered and bruised, he walked upright, without the least sign of pain, a grim smile twitching at the sides of his mouth.  As the man drew nearer the hulking figure before him, the smile faded and he knelt humbly with outstretched arms.

‘He heard the Ostentum have returned.’  The voice was impossibly deep, and earthy, the very voice of the mountain, it appeared.  It reverberated around the cavern, the bass vibrating inside the man’s chest.

‘Yes, Master.’

‘Has he seen evidence?’

The man worded his response carefully, suppressing his confusion.  Only the Master understood all aspects of the plan, even if they did seem self-contradictory to lesser beings.  ‘Not yet, Master.’

‘Very well.’

The room was dark and damp, cave-like.  In truth they were hundreds of feet above the ground.  The figure looked out through a slit in the stone wall into blinding sunlight, although the room remained dark, as if the shadows here were resistant to being penetrated by the sun’s rays.  The Master turned to face him, and the man immediately hugged the ground.

The thundering voice spoke again.  ‘You have done well, Apostate.  Arise.’

Breathing a sigh of relief, the man, who looked so small, thin and pathetic in the shadow of his demonic master, stood.  He quickly walked to a marble basin at the far end of the room and proceeded to wash.  The Master did not move, but watched impassively as his servant cleaned off the signs of battle: grime, sand, blood – and even the wounds themselves.

‘We have been planning long enough,’ the Master’s voice boomed.  ‘Now it is time to unleash upon Calaspia what is overdue … a lot has changed in fifty years.  You know what you have to do.’

‘It will be arranged, Lord, even as you have commanded.  The Dwarf will see what he is meant to see; nothing less, and nothing more.  He will not undo our plan this time.’

‘See to it.’

The colossal warrior turned again to stare out of the slit in the rock.  He might have been a statue.  The servant, understanding the conversation was over, bowed to the floor and hurried out of the room.  If he failed his Master in this, he would wish he had indeed been killed by Nurgor.  Or, for that matter, the Dwarf.
 
_____________________________________________

Below, as background information, are

1.  the details of the Competition, and

2.  some information on the novel, as well as regarding the teenage twin authors of the novel, on which the Competition is based.

For interviews, please ring +41 78 697 4033 or email: bareillyevents@gmail.com

1.  The Competition:

Anyone aged 26 or less on 15 January 2008 can enter the competition by writing a story of up to 1,000 words based on the characters of the best-selling fantasy novel, Conspiracy of Calaspia, by the Guptara twins.

The ten top entrants will be chosen by the five Judges on the basis of the creativity and innovation of the entries, and will win an all expenses paid 10-day Literary Tour of the U.K. from July 17-27, 2008. Winners who are 16 years of age or older will also be offered a 50% scholarship for the C. S. Lewis Foundations' triennial Summer Institute from July 27-August 9, for a week each in Oxford and Cambridge: http://www.cslewis.org/programs/oxbridge/2008/index.html

The Calaspia International Storywriting Competition has been launched by Sought After Media LLC (California, USA) in co-operation with Starbloom Ltd. (Ireland), Nivedit Good Books Ltd (India) and South Asian Resources (Canada).

2.  The Authors and the Novel "Conspiracy of Calaspia":

The Guptara twins are 18, were born to an Indian father and English mother, and live in Switzerland.  They completed the first draft of their highly-acclaimed novel when they were only eleven.  Several complete re-writes later, Conspiracy of Calaspia is a 600 page blockbuster.

Jyoti, the younger twin, became probably the world's youngest full-time writer at the age of 15, shortly after becoming the youngest-ever writer to be published by The Wall Street Journal.  Suresh, the elder twin, has just finished (summer 2007) the British School-Leaving Exams ("A" Levels) and is spending a year as a full-time writer too, before he decides about his future.

Their fantasy novel, Conspiracy of Calaspia, rose to number 2 on the Indian best seller list, second only to Kiran Desai's Man Booker Prize Winning Novel, The Inheritance of Loss.

Mondadori, the largest Italian publisher, has signed a substantial advance for the Insanity Saga – that is, the twin's first THREE novels (even though only the first has been written so far).

Rowohlt, one of the oldest German publishers has not only signed a six-figure advance for their trilogy, but has also chosen Conspiracy of Calaspia as the *lead* young adult novel for Rowohlt's 100th anniversary in 2008.

Conspiracy of Calaspia has been highly praised in the press as well as by other authors.

Full biographical and book-related information, press coverage, views from other authors, and PHOTOS of the Guptara twins are at:  www.twins.guptara.net

Other relevant websites:

www.myspace.com/guptaratwins - The Guptara Twins on MySpace

BBC interview with the Guptara Twins:
http://vudyo.com/view_video.php?viewkey=84325132fca8edcdfb40

www.calaspia-competition.com - Full details of the Competition (including downloadable Bookmarks and Posters)

For interviews, please ring +41 78 697 4033 or email: bareillyevents@gmail.com

_____________________________________________

Eminent Global Panel of Judges announced for the Calaspia International Competition

An outstanding international panel of Judges is hereby announced for the Calaspia International Storywriting Competition for Young People

- Mr. Gurcharan Das, world-famous business guru, columnist & playwright;

- Ms Bianca Jagger the renowned social and human rights advocate;

- Dr Michael Nobel, great-grand-nephew of the founder of the Nobel Prizes, and immediate past-President of the Nobel Family Society;

- Alec Sokolow, one of the world's best filmscript writers (e.g. Evan Almighty (2007) and Daddy Day Camp (also 2007), Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties (2006), Garfield (2004), Cheaper by the Dozen (2003), Goodbye Lover (1998), Money Talks (1997), and Toy Story (1995)), and

- G. P. Taylor, the best-selling author of Shadowmancer, Wormwood and other novels. _________________________________________

ABOUT THE BOOK

Conspiracy of Calaspia (Insanity, Book 1)



Evil has a new mask - the face of reason.

When the Nurgor and Ostentum destroy their peaceful village, Bryn joins a motley group of courageous individuals who must brave danger and death to stop the insidious powers behind an enemy that defies logic. Why have the Barue, an innocent tribe with the uncanny ability to sense emotions, been targeted for destruction? And who is behind the intricate scheme that unfolds? After many daring adventures they reach apparent safety, only to discover they have unwittingly been spun into the mesh of evil. Caught in a web of corruption, they must race to save Calaspia along with their lives – if it is not too late...

*

Full of heroism and cowardice, rich in treachery and deception, simmering with intrigue, Conspiracy of Calaspia begins the epic tale of the multi-volume Insanity series. Written in an inimitable style, this debut novel is a gripping read for young and old alike.

REVIEWS

~ OTHER AUTHORS ~


“ Most enjoyable ”
- Richard Adams
(Watership Down)

“ the extraordinary epic fantasy novel, in the genre of Lord of the Rings, by 17-year old twin brothers who have been plotting together since early childhood. A large-scale drama, following classic themes of good and evil... and this first book is only a foretaste of what is to come! ”
- Patrick Dixon
One of the "twenty most influential business thinkers alive today," author of twelve books (Island of Bolay, Futurewise)

“ splendid work ... betrays sheer genius ... masterfully crafted; fantasy at its best ... brilliantly portrayed.   A unique addition to the world of outstanding literature ... as appealing to adults as children, if not more so. It was hard to put this book down (and truly frustrating whenever I had to). ... holds ones attention forever! ... would make a great movie. ”
- Rabi Maharaj
Death of a Guru, the international bestseller translated into over 60 languages

~ THE PRESS ~

“ All set to claim literary fame ”
- Tehelka, the People's Paper, India

“ Talented twins ... epic fantasy ”
- Asians in Media, UK

“ Precocious ... positively venerable at 17 ”
- Business Standard

“ Twins enter world of words with flair ... exceptional ”
- The Hindu

“ Suresh and Jyoti Guptara ... enough to make a publisher insanely happy. Happen to be teenagers - all of 17, and good-looking, to boot ”
- Outlook India

“ If you liked Harry Potter and yearn to live in the Shire, you’re sure to love ... Conspiracy of Calaspia. Suresh and Jyoti Guptara’s debut ... a magical yarn of heroism, cowardice, treachery and deception ”  
- Express India

“ A tale of grit and courage ... an epic novel ... deals with a potpourri of plots involving life, betrayal, murder, deception, suspicion, friendship, enmity and mystery ... the beginning of an epic tale ”
- News Today

“ The literary debut of Brothers Guptara is sure to spice up the literary scene ”  
- India Today

“ The fantasy novel of the year ”
- Books Today
______________________________________

Full biographical and book-related information, press coverage, views from other authors, and PHOTOS of the Guptara twins are at:  www.twins.guptara.net

Other relevant websites:

www.myspace.com/guptaratwins - The Guptara Twins on MySpace

BBC interview with the Guptara Twins:
http://vudyo.com/view_video.php?viewkey=84325132fca8edcdfb40

www.calaspia-competition.com - Full details of the Competition (including downloadable Bookmarks and Posters)

All information presented here are taken from the Calaspia International Story Competition website   www.calaspia-competition.com website or the Guptara twins website www.twins.guptara.net