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Hub #1400: In Praise Of... Shalini Kagal

Updated on October 24, 2009

Every 100 Hubs, I've stated I will do an "In Praise Of..." and this particular one is definitely one of the, if not the, most praiseworthy subject of all. There are very few people I have known in my life who are beyond reproach: After all, we're all human and in one sense or another, have our failings, flaws, and warts. There are precious few individuals I have had the pleasure of knowing in my life who have conducted themselves in a manner which is 100% worthy of respect and admiration, and Shalini Kagal is definitely among this extremely rarefied group.

My writing collaborations with Shalini go way back. It's one of those cases where I could tell you all about it, but then I'd have to kill you. We wrote contracts for the Mob,; clinical analyses for the Russian Mafia that yellowcake was turmeric; agreements between Triad factions separating Southern California into influence territories; y'know... that kind of typical, boring, work for hire freelance writing stuff that we all do at one time or another.

Through all of these... inventive... writing assignments, Shalini proved not only to be a consummate writer, organizer, administrator, and editor, but also a good and true friend through thick and through thin. (Not that I was ever the thin.) That was a great trait for Shalini to have, as not all of these assignments went off well. I remember the time that Shalini and I were being chased through the back streets of Mumbai ducking bullets in a scene right out of Kaminey by some goons from the Golden Triangle... talk about Mumbai Noir!

OK, by now you've probably caught on that this is just Halperbole and Shalini and I only did really normal, boring writing assignments. Stuff like over a thousand SEO articles on dog breeds, babies, and music genres, all done collaboratively on opposite sides of the world. The kind of writing that makes you want to give up the will to live, but you force your way through it because it pays the rent. And although at that time in my life I would look forward to then next day of work with all of the enthusiasm of heading into abdominal surgery when the doctor has just informed you that they have run out of anaesthetic, Shalini was always a bright spot in my day, always helpful, positive and capable of handling whatever enormous avalanches of work I would dump on her with a smile and a thank you.

I honestly don't know how Shalini did it, nor do I know how she managed to not tell me to go take a flying fornication at a rolling doughnut. All I know is that her work was impeccable, her precision staggering, and her meticulous attention to detail completely amazing.

Of our various writing clients some were great, some were barely passable, and some were out and out scumbags who ripped us off, but through it all Shalini could always be counted on to be professional, supportive and upbeat. She was a rock in the stormiest times, and I will always be grateful for her consistency, perseverance and sheer writing talent.

In another place and time, Shalini Kagal would be an internationally renowned millionaire bestselling novelist: such is her ability, skill, and expertise. In this crazed instantaneous gratification electro-age of ours where words are carried on the ether and no longer on the permanence of the Gutenbergian page, it is shameful that a writer such as Shalini Kagal is not represented on the bookshelves of every literary connoisseur on the planet. As it is, we should be thankful that we have the profound pleasure of being able to read her work on this platform. We, the members of the HubPages community certainly have a rare jewel in our midst and I am proud to be her friend.


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    • profile image

      Raj 7 years ago

      I have known Shalini for many years now (in the real world)and I can tell you that, without a doubt, she the most kind, helpful and non-egoistic person I have known. Shalu you deserve every praise you receive...both in the real and the virtual world!

    • billy sidhu profile image

      billy sidhu 7 years ago

      yup- i agree with u totally. i discovered her recently and she certainly is the jewel of the hub!

    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 7 years ago from Toronto

      I join you in your celebration! Shalini RULES! :)

    • quicksand profile image

      quicksand 8 years ago

      I missed this hub somehow, but I am glad I found it right now. I too would like to celebrate this event, I mean the publishing of this article, as I too am a great fan of Shal! :)

    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 8 years ago from Toronto

      I would love to someday meet her. I envy you for knowing her! Please say hi! :)

    • profile image

       8 years ago

      I have been a little more fortunate than you Hal as I happen to live in the same city as this extremely nice person who also happens to be a great writer. Shalini deserves all the accolades you have given her.

    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 8 years ago from Toronto

      Thank you Shalini, for being yourself and being wonderful. HubHugs right back at ya! :)

    • Shalini Kagal profile image

      Shalini Kagal 8 years ago from India

      Hal!! How come I didn't see this?? Thank you sooooo much - you are the best! I'm honoured and so very touched, Hal!

      Aya - don't believe everything he says. He's always been my favourite client and he really is a pleasure to work with - you just need to discount everything he says about himself :D


    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 8 years ago from Toronto

      Shalini is tops in my book. Always has and always will be! We met in the wild and wooly online world of freelance writers getting jobs on boards. We collaborated on a project together about three years ago and then did a lot more after that. I regret that I'm not doing that type of work any longer as it was a privilege, a pleasure, and an honor to work with her!

    • Aya Katz profile image

      Aya Katz 8 years ago from The Ozarks

      Hal, I love Shalini's writing, and it always makes me feel good after I have read one of her hubs.

      Where did you meet her Hal? How did the two of you start to collaborate? Tell us more!