Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Writer's Block

The date stamp tells me it has been forty one days, I know it has been much longer (the last piece I wrote for the blog was almost two months ago, but had posted it a few weeks later).

It is perhaps easier to write when you have only a few thing happening around you: you can focus of any one of those and put together a piece in no time (in my case one night), but when you have multiple things happening, you lose track of your own thoughts, let alone write. And in the last two months, there have been many things happening around me -- some significant, others not so much but all good enough to elicit a post, but then why have I not been able to blog? The reasons could be many, some genuine, rest just excuses.

One important -- and genuine -- reason has been travel, not the kind of travel that you can write pages about, but the kind where you just sleep and eat, and what better place to do that than your mother's and your brother's? So there I was -- complete with my two devilish children -- enjoying a lazy summer, first in Lucknow with my parents and sister, and then in Bombay with my brother and sister-in-law. In short, I was playing the quintessential daughter and proverbial sister-in-law for close to a month.

Although both the places gave me ample time and things to ponder about and put on paper, most of them, however were such that would have led to the same old nostalgic notes: of how I was once a school kid looking forward to going to my granny's in Lucknow to how I now take my school going girls to their granny's, also in Lucknow. Or how my brother and sister-in-law play the perfect uncle and aunt, spoiling the girls to the hilt just like our uncles and aunts did many, many years ago. But how long can you romanticise the past and how much? 

Then there was the writing itself. The fact that some part of what I have been doing -- and have always wanted to do -- had finally started to see the light of the day was surely something to be glad about, but writing about it would have not only made me sound conceited, but could also have very well been a case of premature celebration: I have, after all, only a handful of published pieces to my credit.

Talking of published pieces reminds me how I have, in the past few months, given up the most brilliant story ideas a miss. Not because I could not have developed them, but because all of them would entail at least one young -- or not so young -- woman, and her story would most likely be presumed to be an episode from either my life of from someone else's. And that 'I know who you are writing about' look on people's face is not what I like very much.

There are my thoughts too. Not many months ago, this blog would only have a reflection of how I felt and what I felt, but over the months, the space has become a little less about what I want to say and a little more about what others would want to read. That, according to me, is the natural progression of a writer. I now think thrice before putting my thoughts out for people to read: why should they care about my opinion, anyway?

I won't be lying if I say that I am tempted to delete this post, it is after all nothing but a rant. But I will let it be; publish it even, who knows this might just cure my writer's block.

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