Tuesday, August 14, 2007

On Writing

In January I wrote of my fear of writing. Its August, and I'm finally writing. Strangely enough I began writing around the same time I resigned myself to the fact I'd likely never do so. But there I was, about to go to bed, when out of nowhere, she came to me.. I could see her eyes, her smile, her circumstances. Never since I was 14 had a character simply appeared in my mind's eye, asking me to share her story.

As the days pass and the pages increase, I can't help but wonder, why now? Why when I suddenly gave up did the idea come to me with such clarity it feels as though she is my sister? For so many years I feared failure. Images of a carefully packaged manuscript mailed to publishers only to be tossed carelessly in a bin by the dumpster paralyzed my creativity. The critics in my head taunted me when I deigned to form a sentence towards story telling. I could not escape the mental image of Stephen King and JK Rowlings laughing, tummy hurting, tears streaming down their faces as they looked with horror at sentences composed by me.

But Stephen King says not when he was penniless and practically homeless, and not now, when he has millions to his name did he nor does he care about the money. He wrote and writes for the sake of the story. And therein lies the truth of the matter, her story deserves to be told, and she has blessed me with the task of telling it. I know she is fictional but she is also strangely real. I no longer care if a line will wrap around the bookstore seeking a copy of this ultimate book, I just want her story told. If her story is read by even one other person, it will be success for me. Releasing myself from the trappings of fear, the fear of failure and finally writing not to publish, not to win recognition or admiration, but just to write for the sake of writing, watching with awe as sentences form and imagery is conveyed on what was once simply blank nothingness- that is when I truly began writing.

Why do I share this? I say it first to explain my infrequent postings which will likely remain so until this novel is compete, and second, I hope it provides someone struggling to write with hope. Not hope of financial success since as of now I don't have that, but hope of actually writing, because writing is after all, the whole point isn't it?

15 comments:

hope said...

Thats so awesome girl. Looks like a "muse" hit you eh? Ahh, I crack me up :)

Its SO hard to silence the invisible critics, and now that you've done it, there's nothing stopping you. Go for it! I'll be one of the ppl in line waiting to have it autographed one day.

Jane said...

I am so happy that you are finally going for it and that the character has come to you so clearly. The true happiness in art is in the creating, not what becomes of it. Keep going, darlin'! I'm so proud of you.

Tee said...

I think it's kind of like love. When you give up and stop looking so hard, that's when you're most open to receive it.

Or how about when you lose something. You search for it like crazy. Turn the house upside down. Obsess about it... And then, when you give up, it's sitting right in front of you.

Mystery of the universe :)

pixie said...

I can't wait to read the final product!!! I'm so glad that you didn't give up writing!:)

mystic-soul said...

I will be yr very first buyer !!!

As a last resort, if it does not get by publishers', you can make it in a glamorously done e-novel or CD form which need only few bucks!!!

Paper books will eventually die anyway.

(If you have read my blog, I write small stories from real life constantly without thinking, if anyone reads).

mystic-soul said...

I know you are smart but just an advise

Take as long as you need. Edit 1000 time and re-write 200 times if needed. Just don't rush with euphoria.

Advise from Bernard Shaw: Good write always keep paper and pen handy as thoughts slips away from mind quickly.

ruby said...

That's fantastic that your character came to you! Good luck chica, I am sure it will be a fantastic story!

Aisha said...

Hope, Jane, Tee, Pixie, Mystic, Ruby, thank you thank you. Most of y'all have been with me from the beginning, thank you for your support and for reading this blog... its the reason I have grown confident enough to practice an art I for so many years doubted. Thank you much.

Aisha said...

And Jane yes, its seeing this as an art that is helping me. Its not about the end result its about getting there. That is whats keeping me going.

Mystic thanks for your advice about revision. I will insh'allah :0)

espoir said...

Hey Aisha, I just happened to stop on your blog. I think you write very well. Something I have always wanted to do. Keep it up and I'd definitely read your writing :)
Btw, where in Pakistan are you from? I read your post about visiting. I say definitely go. I lived in Islamabad for almost a year on my own last year working for UN. It's a beautiful city and you will enjoy it!
-espoir

Anonymous said...

...good luck, aisha!...i have the utmost respect and admiration for writers since i love, love, LOVE reading but neither have the engery or inclination to take paper to pen...and don't forget us little ppl when you hit it big :P...

-ash2

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
...good luck, aisha!...i have the utmost respect and admiration for writers since i love, love, LOVE reading but neither have the engery or inclination to take paper to pen...and don't forget us little ppl when you hit it big :P...

-ash

Shabina said...

salams lady, sorry i've been quite mia lately! but i'm so excited for you, iA may the force be with ya :D

khaled said...

Mashallah Great Name and Beautiful site.
keep it up.

Chic Mommy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.

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