I was pondering upon the act of writing one day and it dawned on me, how most often, my response usually dangles between one of the two—for one, I know that for the past couple of years, it has come to be absolutely crucial for me—like air and water and yet, at the same time, it remains one of the most singularly challenging things to engage in, especially when I sit at my desk and decide to write. The dilemma I face these days most often is—what to write about!
I feel like I’m lost in a maze that is leaving me open to choose between hundred-odd directions, whilst I know I must choose just one of them. Earlier, I’d get into a rut that would put my brain into a freeze and paralyse my thought processes until I’d realise that I was in the grips of that dreaded condition that they call the ‘writer’s block’. For years, I played along, giving in and feeling horribly empty within my head, for being unable to string together even one single sentence because of this paralysing condition.
And so it went on for quite a few years. Thanks to a plethora of resources available on the internet, I came across writers who shared their wisdom, and, who, in their unique ways, had tackled the demons that got in the way of their writing. It’s amazing how we inevitably get drawn to things that we most need at a given time. Interestingly, I picked one particular tip out of the many—one that suggested I write something every day. I decided to get 500 words in my journal every morning. I stuck to it even on days when the muse never showed up.
I kept at it nevertheless. And then, the magic worked. The demon called ‘writer’s block’ slowly got out of the way, but there were other new challenges in its place. It took me a while to learn that, that is how writers continue to write. There is no perfect way or condition to write. That truly was an eye-opener!
The truth is that the act of writing is as easy or as difficult as we perceive it to be. The more we write, the better we get at it and the clearer it gets in the head. But, the conditions are never perfect and no writing is easy. Not even to the established ones. Every writer will struggle. But, the idea is not to give up. When I’m writing, I do not stress over what does not appear on my canvas. Instead, I bring in what is ready to show up. And many a time, I’m surprised by what appears before me. What we express through our writing is but the tip of the iceberg of what we still hold within ourselves. The possibilities are endless. There is always so much more waiting to come out.
As I pour my thoughts here, I’m aware of the dream that I nurtured, many years back— that of being a published author someday. I have no way to tell if that dream will see the light of the day. Yet, I remain consistent with the daily grind of writing. It is akin to the mundane chores we do every day; a bit like housekeeping—unglamorous, demanding but necessary.
Writing happens—one word at a time, like everything else in life! And it remains, as easy and as challenging as life itself!
Written as part of our #SoulfulSunday freewriting exercise—a concept ideated by Vinitha, Shilpa and yours truly.