My Affair with Writing

My Affair with Writing

Like any other affair, I’ve had my ups and lows in this relationship. The early stories that I discovered were in Tinkle Digest. Comics that got read over again when my cousins from boarding school would be home for the summer vacations. Chanda mama was another member in the house that would arrive promptly every month though I didn’t take to it. I would devour stories from language text books way before school started for the year.

I read too many famous fives, secret sevens. For a time my secret wish was to be a detective. You can guess where that influence came from. One of my early diary entries does have a page titled – Tips on Sleuthing.

I revered writers with a devotion a devotee has to God. This reverence never made me think that I could be one of them. I didn’t even have any contact with any writers within my immediate circle to make them human for me. At that time for me, they were somehow elevated mortals who could create such magic and weave words beautifully to create stories. Of course, I still revere writers today too. Today I look at them as artists but as humans too with their vulnerabilities. My view has changed from a single dimension to being multi dimensional.

I stumbled on writing quite by accident. I loved reading but never wrote anything other than the required essays in school. It was by pure chance that one of the essays happened to be good enough to be published in our school newspaper. Good enough by my class teacher’s standard at that time that is. This was followed by reading one of my essay in class where I remember my class teacher was nodding happily as I was reading it out loud. I think that was the moment when I discovered the true power and the essence of being a writer.

The feelings that you are able to evoke in your readers through words on a page is a heady and empowering feeling. After this one of my essays came marked with “You seem to have a flair for writing.” I couldn’t decide at the time if she liked my piece or not as I didn’t know the meaning of the word ‘flair’ at that time. So I looked it up in the dictionary. This was when the writing bug caught me. I didn’t write consistently after this but this is where the seed had taken hold. I shouldn’t admit this but I even wrote essays or helped write essays for my brother, sister and cousins in school.

There are times when I have doubted my writing. I have now learned to have faith in writing in spite of these doubts.

What’s your writing story?

Is creativity only for a select few?

Is creativity only for a select few? 2

What we think creativity is …

“I’m not a creative person” one of my friend tells me when she comes across a painting and wishes she was good at painting. I sigh. She was deeply rooted in the belief that she was not a creative person.

When we think of creativity more often than not we think of people or art who have been practising it for some years. We seldom think of their first and early awkward attempts at creativity. We look at the creativity of the artist that has had many months or years to mature and feel that our own work would never measure up to it. Of course, it wouldn’t! We have never looked at the many rough drafts or the awkward paintings that had to be produced before the final art comes into being.

What creativity actually is…

Creativity isn’t always beautiful but it is always fun. It is always play if you allow it to be. It can ride on the backs of the first limping sentences that come to you as you attempt your first poem. Creativity can be as simple as making your grandmother’s recipe for soup and adding a few twists to make it your own. Creativity comes out of chaos, out of mess. It is never a linear learning curve. When we think of ourselves being creative we often focus on the product – the book, the painting and not the process itself, the hours spent writing or rewriting the rough draft.

If we are human, we are creative. It isn’t a gift given only to a select few.

Creativity is contagious. Pass it on – Albert Einstein

P.S – Two of my prose poems Lady Red and Wax published at Literary Yard 🙂

My poem ‘Spaces‘ made it to the short list in the contest run by writersmelon.com. The theme was unrequited love 🙂