Alright! This is top secret information. I have confidential and restricted data that cannot reach the ears of the ‘not one of us’. They are out there. I see them everyday. Ignorant faces pasted upon wobbly heads, they swirl and contort, exuding meaningless froth from misplaced orifices.
My ‘never to be revealed’ encounters with them have left me tongue-tied. My otherwise pompous brain quietly switches off, leaving me incapable of intelligent dialogue. Faint whispers flee my lips, their battered frames jumping to harsh premature deaths. This makes them smile, they enjoy the discomfort. The air around us is heavy with guilt and insecurity, suffocation humbly waits its turn.
My eyes turn inwards searching for the truth, probing the unexplored depths. Darkness everywhere, I must find the missing piece, a reality so intense that the ‘smiling ones’ would no longer be capable of smiling. Random sparks of realization illuminate the dismal corners, bolts of lightning burn the looming shadows of timidity. Blinding beams of white light pierce me through and through. A halo of acceptance encircles my light emitting head. They gape in wonder, yet it is the fierceness of my words that sends them scurrying on their self absorbed paths.
“I AM A WRITER!!!!”
Crash….Boom….Bam….and other such lame sound effects…..
Well I think I’ve put my point across, in not too plain and simple words. I often find myself in an awkward and not so amusing predicament when faced with a very common question asked by many people around the world. It’s often an icebreaker in conversations between new acquaintances.
“So, what do you do?”
My answer usually starts like this, “Well um…..”
I actually have to take a breath and think of an appropriate answer. I recently gave this some thought and came up with a few untrustworthy reasons.
1. My career has majorly changed in shape, size and form over the past few years. A computer engineer to an administrator to a full time mom. Each change was somewhat planned and then executed. However my tryst with writing was an unexpected surprise. Did I ever picture myself as a writer…..NO WAY! I always knew that I could throw some words together and make them look good, but I never considered it as a possible occupation. This now brings me to my second unreliable reason
2. Since I never saw myself becoming a writer, I still am somehow unconvinced of how worthy I am of this respectable tag. I’m a new writer and only recently have taken up writing as a serious profession. Like many other fellow writers I follow the inspiring mantra, ‘I write, therefore I am’. Writing gives me immense pleasure and the thrill derived from creative thinking is comparable to the ‘totally awesome’ and scariest roller coaster ride ever experienced by me as a child. Arms straight up in the air, I’m screaming like crazy at my computer.
Then why does a simple question catch me off guard? Maybe I have nothing to show or prove that I am a writer. When I tell people that I write, they don’t respond immediately. There’s a creepy silence like they expect me to finish my incomplete statement. I stare and they stare and then I start to squirm and then I let out a really weird chuckle.
No, I haven’t written any books….No, I do not work for a newspaper….No, I do not offer advice in magazines….No, I am not a poet….NO!NO!NO!
Well that pretty much sums up frustrating chit-chat. I know this is a passing phase and probably every writer at some point or the other sacrifices resolute belief for addictive self-doubt. Many writers juggle multiple responsibilities yet remain loyal to their writing. We all envision ourselves climbing the ‘Writer’s Hill’, each writer toiling to conquer the treacherous terrain, resting when required and continuing the steep ascent to the top.
O.K….What’s the point?
The point is there is no top. The hill is as high as we want it to be. Ambition is a state of mind that dictates our actions, streamlining us towards achieving miniature goals. Each goal accomplished, entices us to raise the bar a wee bit higher. I would love to write several books and claim my title as a best-selling fiction author. But today, I am happy studying creative writing, I am happy that I set up my own blog, I am happy writing this guest post.
Uh oh….approaching the word limit. A writer’s words never run out.
Bio: Terveen Gill is a writer living in North India. She fondly remembers her childhood days spent in the United States. She is currently studying Creative Writing. Her stories are her treasures and she hopes to put them on display soon. Writing is her primary job and everything else manages to fall into place. Learn more about Terveen at her blog.