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?

Top 10 Quotes by Writers on Writing

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Sometimes, all you need is a gentle nudge in the right direction to get your writing muscles going.  A little inspiration can go a long way in overcoming the blank page. So here are my top 10 favourite quotes by writers on writing that make me pick up my pen or laptop again.

1 “Write drunk;edit sober.”  Ernest Hemingway

2. “f I waited for perfection, I would never write.”  Margaret Atwood

3. “Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.”  Ray Bradbury

4. “You can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.” Jodi Picoult

5. “Its okay to write garbage – as long as you edit brilliantly.”  C. J Cherryh

6. “Writing is a calling, not a choice.” Isabel Allende

7. “The write word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.” Mark Twain

8. “Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.” Kurt Vonnegut

9. “A little talent is a good thing to have if you want to be a writer. But the only real requirement is the ability to remember every scar.” Stephen King

10. “We write by the light of every story we have ever read.” Richard Peck