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Hey, fellow writer do you do this sometimes?
Like, your fingers hover over the keyboard while you don’t know what you want to write? You look at the books around you, the bookshelves stacked with works from your favourite authors and you curse yourself. You don’t even have a single idea to write upon while these people have created volumes of work.
Where did the ‘idea fairy’ fly away?
Why is life so unfair?
Why can’t I write a masterpiece that someone will love as much as I love my favourite books?
What are we supposed to do when our work simply doesn’t seem good enough to us? How do we go about showing it to the world when we ourselves would have scrunched our noses, and turned our faces if someone offered us this work?
For me, as a writer, my biggest enemy is my inner critic.
I imagine this critic to be a wrinkly, old woman with a crooked nose. The folds of her skin hanging loose from her face while she sits and spins thread. Yes, it might be inspired from Sleeping Beauty’s witch but since I’m an Indian, mine wears a green sari (no idea, why green). Her hair is tied in a bun and when she laughs at me she reveals her mottled gum. She has a few teeth left and so when she speaks, the air seems to pass through the gaps in her mouth making her hiss thereby adding a sinister tone to her mostly incoherent speech.
Her words are not relevant here, as I know what she says by heart. She says,
‘You are not good enough!’
‘You are an imposter!’
‘What makes you think you can do it, huh?’
Imagine having to keep typing your words when she continues to mock you in a constant loop?
It is frustrating and sometimes, I believe her.
But guess what happens most of the other times?
I write despite her harangue.
I give her an indulgent smile, like one might reserve for a child throwing tantrums in the middle of the road. However, just like the child, I don’t take her too seriously. I know that the less attention I pay to her words, the fainter will they become inside my head. And so, sometimes I just plough along with brute force.
She’ll scream and shout, she will use stronger abuses, but she won’t stop me from finishing my job at hand. I will write, simply because that gives me the greatest joy.
Some days are good and some days are filled with self-pity and ice creams but every day of my life is meant for writing.
I cannot forget that because, just like Sleeping Beauty needed a kiss from her Prince Charming to wake up from the depths of her slumber, my life force is hidden behind my resolution to keep writing. I come alive when I pen down my thoughts. I see the world with renewed faith and freshness.
Writing, for me, is like the Prince’s kiss to make me come alive and I need to do it EVERYDAY to be happy, to live happily ever after.
The evil witch of self-criticism cannot win in my Fairy Tale, my writing will fight it back like a valiant warrior and give me back the life I dream of living.
The writing can be good or bad but the trick is to just keep going. We all know that what we practice will grow stronger with time. So, if I’m so afraid to write badly, will I ever be able to write well?
Like J.K Rowling said,
“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.”
Who knew that the trick to living a fairy tale life as a writer was so boring and obvious that I almost overlooked it?
It is discipline.
It is persistence.
It is perseverance.
It is writing every day, no matter what.
You know, everything happens for a good reason. When my two years blog expired, I was heart broken. However, it seems that this gave me the opportunity to create a blog on WordPress and it is so encouraging to see people from all across the world reading my words, responding to my pieces, and in turn encouraging me to write even more. I too read so many awesome blog posts from you people everyday and I am learning so much from those.
For example, today I learned about this brilliant software called Focus Writer from this post on the blog Writers to Writers. Focus Writer lets you write sans all the distractions and temptations from the Worldwide Web.
My previous blog didn’t offer me this opportunity to interact. As a result of this, I’m encouraged to write more and more. Even when my fingers hover over the keyboard, my determination says I’ll write a post, and while the witch keeps taunting me, my Writing Prince leads me to the happiness of creation and fulfilment.