Like every year since 2014, I’m participating in Camp NaNoWriMo April’18. For this month I don’t have a lot planned out, but just a basic idea of what needs to be done. I’m mainly going to go for 2 things this time – sorting out the ending of Sinister Town and writing the first draft of a story I’d started as a short series flash-fiction, Jessie.
Over the last couple of months, I’d have some really good, strange, outright hilarious and some really amazeballs story ideas and, strangely enough, I wrote them all down. I never really write down random story ideas anymore, I used to write them down very carefully when I started out as a writer, but after I heard the invincible, and my writing idol, SK mention in one of his many speeches, that if you can’t remember an idea for a year (or basically a long time) then it’s not worth
working on. That was the point where I abandoned scribbling down ideas and, now that I reflect on it, maybe that was one of the reasons for my major writer’s block. Anyway, so I’d been writing down random ideas, mostly because I’d been in a writing slump lately (for like a year and a half now) and so I just wanted something different to write about – something random that would help me in ‘pantsing.’
So I have those story ideas to develop too. One of them is a dark elf story and I can already feel it coming together beautifully as a full-length novel. So I hope I have enough things to write and meet my goal of 50K words as I really need to get back into my usual flow of writing, something that I dearly miss!
I wish all of you who are participating in Camp Nano April all the very best!
I’ve been continuously blogging over at TRB since December and also in the first week of 2018, so it feels weird to do my first post here SO LATE. Still, I have to do it to get past the “first-post-of-the-year” thing and get on with a much defined regular schedule of posts.
Late 2017 proved to be a really busy time for me as we shifted our home and got a kitten, Eva (more on this in my next post!) and everything just got overwhelming. Finally, things have settled into a steady rhythm and now I’m able to think of my weekly schedules and planning things.
For this blog, I’m reviving WOW – Word Of the Week so that at least I’ll have something to post regularly on the blog and also because I’m working on my vocabulary this year. So like before, WOW is going to be a weekly thing. I’m planning to post this every Saturday as Saturdays for me are quite relaxed.
I’ll try and post some short fiction or poems every month and will try and do a monthly round-up post, though I’m not promising anything.
I’m already working on my 2018 BuJo setup, 3 new story ideas and a couple of other things. I’ll be posting about random stuff more this year as my planned and scheduled posts take a lot of time for preps and stuff. And plus, I’ve discovered lately that I love random posts more than the planned ones.
Anyway, so here’s hoping that this year proves to be the best one for all of us. Cheers!
I had planned for 2 short stories and 1 article on Writing to post in through April and May, but unfortunately, things got in the way (as they usually do) and I completely forgot about the drafts (some half-baked some ready to go up) sitting patiently on my dashboard. I thought I’ll get back to blogging regularly now by scheduling the posts – like I do with my reviews at The Reading Bud, but before that, I wanted to drop by and post updates about what’s been since 8th April, the last time I posted.
Deceived has been entered for the Hindu Literary Prize 2017. Hindu is one of the top newspapers in India.
Deceived is being translated into Marathi (a regional language of Maharashtra, the State I live in.)
The English release of Deceived is set for 24th June and it might be a soft launch by the looks of it because we want to do a big launch cum release with at least 2 languages so most probably, that’ll be sometime in July as the translated Marathi version will be ready by then.
Deceived has crossed 66 ratings on Goodreads.
Deceived is now listed on Amazon.in (Amazon.com and other Amazons will still take another week or so.)
Book reviewers are loving Deceived and I’ve already made a few fans.
Sinister Town is going slow and steady and should be ready by the end of this year.
I have 3 Novel Critiques lined up for the coming days and I’m already booked until the 20th of July.
I have 1 editing lined up for the month of July so the rest of the July is also packed.
I’m working on 2 other projects for Citrus Publishers, mostly marketing and HR related.
I suffered a reading slump in late March, hence wasn’t able to read much for the last two months. These are the only books I read since April: Under The Dome by Stephen King, Hannah’s Moon by John A. Heldt, Girl In Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow, Gerald’s Game by Stephen King, A Fatal Twist by Tracy Weber, The Shadow Over Innsmouth by H.P. Lovecraft, Something Needs Bleeding by Thomas Singer and Christopher Long, Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg, The Bronx Kill by Philip Cioffari and The Turn Of The Screw by Henry James
I have to read another 6 books by Grand Central Publishing, 2 by MM Publicity and 3 by EG Publicity for review. Other than these I have about 8 NetGalley books that I want to read ASAP and another 10 that I’ve bought. So I’ll be busy finishing these books in the coming weeks and months.
We had an awesome holiday in mid-April in Goa. Lots of sunbathing and booze.
We’re shifting to a bigger house – a row-bungalow on 1st June. And now I can finally get my pets.
We’re planning a trip to Thailand in August.
Right after the vacation, we’ll start our hunt for the perfect kitten and GSD pup!
I developed a bad rash on my arms and later found out that I am allergic to UV rays. The rash was due to extreme sunbathing in Goa last month. So I’m just trying to stay away from the direct sunlight as much as possible. 😦
Right now I’m busy with the shifting, readying the house for the Packers and Movers, so I’ll be seeing you guys next week. Stay tuned to my Twitter as I’ll be sharing the new bungalow’s pics there.
Do let me know how you spent your month. I’d be more than happy to know what you’ve been up to!
I always read craft books not once, but several times. I guess that’s the best way to really get the techniques and the wisdom they have to offer. Lately, I’ve been re-reading Bird By Bird by Anne Lamott and came across a concept, more like a paragraph or two, where author Lamott mentions about naming the unconscious:
“My friend Carpenter talks about the unconscious as the cellar where the little boy sits who creates the characters, and he hands them up to you through the cellar door. He might as well be cutting out paper dolls. he’s peaceful; he’s just playing.”
I paused at this particular bit, as I did the first time I read this book, and started thinking about how my unconscious would be?
Here she describes her friend’s version as a boy sitting in the cellar. But I don’t like the pictures of him sitting in confinement. I like her version of the unconscious better, “instead of a little kid, there’s a long-necked, good-natured Dr. Seuss character down there, grim with concentration and at the same time playing.”
So as I said earlier, I thought about my unconscious and this is what I came up with:
A Little Girl And Her Puppy
My unconscious, The Boy In The Cellar if you will, is a Little Girl. And this Little Girl is me, of course.
And the Little Girl is not alone; she has a puppy with her. A GSD puppy of about 4 months. And yes, this puppy is Tiger, my deceased pet.
So that’s my unconscious.
The Little Girl sits in the middle of the aangan of my childhood bungalow, on a stone-tiled floor on a thick faded rug called dari. She’s sitting cross-legged, wearing a beautiful white frock that hangs loosely from her thin wiry shoulders. Her dark-roasted-coffee-brown hair hanging down in waves reaching her waist.
Fair as she is, she has a small mouth and small ears but big brown curious eyes. She’s sitting with her coloring book sprawled luxuriously in front of her among her uncountable Camlin crayons of every color you could possibly imagine. They are the ones that her father gave her.
Now she’s bent over her book and scribbling away with cyan color. She looks happy today.
The Puppy is sitting beside her in a relaxed fashion that only 4-month-old puppies can manage. His head is resting on the girl small knee. He is looking at whatever the Little Girl is drawing with his droopy doggy eyes that look like they’re falling down. He’s a healthy Greman Shepherd and is big enough to come to her knees when she’s standing. He loves the Little Girl immensely and enjoys looking at her draw.
As I said, she looks good, happy. That makes me feel very good. And the important thing is she is not alone, she has the Puppy with her.
She loves drawing and therefore she is always drawing something or the other. Sometimes it takes her days, sometimes weeks and sometimes months or even years to complete a “masterpiece.” And when she’s done, she looks up from her work and calls me and hands me over those drawings.
Sometimes these drawings are so clear that I can clearly see what she has come up with, but sometimes they’re all blurred and abstract and it takes me a while to figure them out, to understand what is it that she wants me to see.
This is how my ideas come to me or rather delivered to me by my unconscious. The Little Girl is not a fragment of me, but she
The Little Girl is not a fragment of me, but she is me. This is how I get countless ideas for my books, characters, plots, sub-plots, short stories, flash fiction pieces, poems, etc.
This is how I write.
If you are new to writing or if you are struggling with it, then I highly suggest this exercise. It’ll help you attain the very focus you need to center your creative mind.
What about you? Have you ever thought about how your unconscious works? Do you have a particular image of that unconscious?
If you liked reading this article, then you might like these as well:
There are a lot of people who don’t believe in the existence of Writer’s Block, but let’s face it, even though you don’t want to name it, there are periods of time in every writer’s life when you simply can’t write (no matter how much you want to!) You can call it a “bad phase”, a stupor or whatever the hell you want it all comes down to the same thing – You can’t write sometimes.
No matter what you want to name it, the truth remains the same – This “bad time” or whatever you want to name it wastes a lot of precious time of writers that can be otherwise used for writing.
This is what is called Writer’s Block. Think of it as just something to name this condition for the sake of convenience.
It’s not all bad if you can recover from it in a short while, say a day or a couple of days or even a week. But it gets pretty bad if you simply can’t get over it for a long period of time, say a month. Or maybe more.
I’ve come across a lot of stories of writers giving up when they suffer a prolonged period of Writer’s Block and it greatly saddens me because this is not a solution. Giving up never is.
In 3 years of my full-time writing career, I’ve gone through multiple phases of Writer’s Block, both short and long spells. And if there’s something I’ve learned from each and every time, it is these 3 things:
1. Make use of this time
Many of us use our extra time for writing. We get a day off, we write. We get an hour off, we write. We go on a vacation, we write. Being a full-time writer also, I use my extra time for writing, so I practically don’t get any free time for other things.
Use this “bad spell” to do the other things like weed the garden, take a small vacation with your family, do the house chores, spend time with your family and friends (god only knows how limited time writers get to spend with others), go for swimming, movies, or do anything else that either needs to be done, or you’ve wanted to do but couldn’t because of writing.
2. Keep feeding your creative mind
Just because you can’t write doesn’t mean you can’t read, or draw or do research or can’t do anything else that’ll work as a fodder for your creative mind.
Remember, our minds are like a sponge, they keep on absorbing and observing things. So when you’re not writing, either read books in your genre or read some refreshing new genre, or sing or dance or do something that you like. But again, don’t do anything that stresses you. You’re just doing these things for yourself, not to please others.
I watch a lot of movies and read a lot of books, both in my genre of writing. It always helps me.
3. Don’t give up
It’s okay to take a break. In fact, the way I see it, Writer’s Block is a way for our mind to tell us to take a break. If you’ll notice it generally happens after you’ve spent a considerable time working on your writing projects.
So listen to your mind and give it a rest.
You’ll always bounce back eventually.
Don’t over think. Relax and take a calming breath. Your mind simply needs a break, it is NOT giving up on writing. So do what you want to do, keep in touch with your creative side and don’t ever think of giving up.
In case if the Writer Block doesn’t go away after a while, then face the truth – It’s not the Writer’s Block, it’s you. You (maybe your subconscious self) are making reasons and coming up with stupid excuses to not to write. So get on your ass and start writing. It’ll be hard, but who said writing will be easy?
Choosing the main Point Of View(s) for your story is either the simplest or the hardest thing you’ll ever come across while writing your book. Determining the voice which narrates or unfolds your story is a tricky thing because if you select the wrong one your story is doomed.
Sometimes (a few precious instances), you don’t have to think about the POV because either you already have it figured out even before starting the story or know which one comes more naturally to you, the one that suits your writing style and feels like the perfect fit for your story. If you find yourself in this situation then consider yourself very lucky because otherwise, you might have a very hard time figuring it out.
Rest of the time (i.e., for the majority of your writing career), you won’t know how to go about determining the POV for your story. This happens mainly due to the unyielding need for perfectionism. You want your story to be perfect (obviously!) but you can’t figure out which should be the main or the central voice that tells the story.
Ideally, more than half of the times the answer lies in using multiple POVs, but that comes with another set of problems that I’ll be covering in my next article relating to POVs. But what if you don’t know which multiple POVs to use?
When stuck in the latter situation, you’ll find yourself in a dark endless pit which will drive you to the brink of giving up, and we certainly do not want that. So to make the process of selecting the perfect POV(s) for your story, I’ve come up with a list of 10 questions that you need to ask yourself in order to get the answer to your POV worries.
The 10 Questions:
How much you want to reveal? And how much you want to hold back?
Whose perspective will be interesting for the reader?
Who’s in the middle of most of the conflicts?
How much information about the plot/story you want to reveal?
How much information about the character you want to reveal?
How it’ll affect the pacing of the story?
What are you comfortable with? First person? Second Person? Or Third Person?
How’d you like the reader to perceive your character and story line?
Are there any parts of the story that need to be shown through different perspectives or through scenes that don’t have the main POV character(s) in them?
How many stories are you trying to tell? And are these stories a part of the main story?
The process doesn’t end here. Once you’ve asked these questions to yourself, it’s imperative that you don’t only answer these questions truthfully but also try to understand them in detail so as not to mess it up. Once you’ve laid out the answers, 99% of the times you’ll be able to figure out the POV(s) for your story. The remaining 1% is your gut feeling which will either confirm your decision and make you feel like you’ve conquered the world or (at it happens to me most of the times) will make you doubt everything you just did and will force you to repeat the entire exercise again (and again, till you get it right.)
If you want my advice, never ignore the gut feeling. Otherwise, you’ll regret it later on.
Watch my video podcast on 10 Questions To Help You Determine The POV(s) For Your Story:
If you have any doubts regarding this post or want to share your experiences or anecdotes then please leave a comment below.
Point Of View, casually known as POV, is one of the most important literary devices that is used in fiction writing. Determining the perspective from which the story is told is often the making or the breaking point of a novel.
If you make a wrong decision, your readers will be highly disappointed due to lack of plot coherence, and not only this, choosing the wrong POV also affects the bonding between the main characters and the reader, thus, affecting your novel on the whole. But if the point of view is chosen well, the readers will not only love your story and develop a memorable relationship with your characters but will also respect your writing and look forward to reading your other works.
Hence, it won’t be wrong to say that the choice of point of view and its execution shows the writer’s ability, efficiency, and dedication to their story. And in order to make the right choice you need to have an in-depth and precise knowledge about all the POVs before settling on one (or more) for your story.
Point of View aka POV is the perspective from which a story is told. Point Of View is what can be called as the voice that tells the story to a reader.
Following are the 3 types of Point Of Views (POVs):
First Person Point Of View–
In First Person POV, the narrator is a character himself/herself. The story unfolds as a first-hand experience of the narrator or it can be said that the character is narrating the story.
The information is unreliable as its scope is limited depending entirely on the main character’s knowledge of/in any situation. For instance, if the character is delusional then it creates a problem if you’ll write the entire book from his perspective.
The First Person POV has recently garnered a lot of popularity as a lot of new authors are using it. The advantages of First Person POV is that the reader can relate to the main character quite easily and the bond that follows is very strong. But of course, it requires a high level of expertise to pull it off.
The pronouns used in First Person POV are – I, me and mine.
Types of First Person POV:
First Person Central POV: When the story is told from the point of view of the main character it is known as the First Person Central POV. This helps in developing an intimate bond between the main character and the reader. It often includes internal monolog, personal feelings, etc, which help in making the reader understand the main character inside-out.
First Person Peripheral POV: When the story is told from the point of view of a secondary or a minor character, who can also be an observer, is known as First Person Peripheral POV. This POV is detached and neutral and provides an objective look at the main character.
Popular books written in First Person POV:
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
The Fault In Our Stars by John Green
Penryn And The End Of Days Series by Susan Ee
Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer
Second Person Point Of View–
In Second Person POV, the narration is addressed from one person to the second person.
The disadvantage of this POV is that it is difficult to relate to. It is a form of direct speech and the narrator or the character refers directly to the reader as “you.”
The Second Person POV is rarely used in fiction-writing, though there are some authors who use it for writing their novels. It is mostly used for instructional writing and how-to books.
The pronouns used in Second Person POV are –You, your.
Popular books written in Second Person POV:
Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney
If On A Winter's Night A Traveler by Italo Calvino
You by Caroline Kepnes
All The Truth that's In Me by Julie Berry
Booked by Kwame Alexander
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Third Person Point Of View–
Third Person POV is the point of view in which a narrator (generally, the one who is not part of the story) tells the story.
This is one of the most widely used POV and most of the early literature and classic novels are written in this POV. A lot of contemporary writers still believe that only the stories written in Third Person POV are good, but of course, it’s their personal opinion.
The Third person POV helps the readers understand the main characters from a distance and many believe that this is what makes it so interesting and capturing.
The pronouns used in Third Person POV: He, she, it, him, her, they, them, its.
Types of Third Person POV:
Third Person Omniscient POV: Omniscient = All-knowing. In Third Person Omniscient POV the narrator knows and reveals the feelings, thoughts, and/or motivations of all the characters (at least partially.)
Eg. Unwind Series by Neal Shusterman.
Third Person Limited POV: In Third Person Limited POV the narrator knows and reveals the feelings, thoughts, and/or motivations of only a single character, the main character.
Eg. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling.
Third Person Objective/Dramatic POV: In Third Person Objective POV the narrator knows and reveals no feelings, thoughts and/or motivations of any of the characters. Rather, the narrator reveals only the facts and details about the story.
Eg. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne.
Popular books written in Third Person POV:
Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare
Maze Runner Series by James Dashner
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Watch my video podcast on POVs:
If you have any doubt regarding POVs or want to share your experiences or anecdotes then please leave a comment below.
While working on my first book, Deceived, I hit the much-dreaded writer’s block at a very crucial time – right when my book needed revising. It felt like I hit the bottom of my creative well and I had to abandon my manuscript for almost 2 months.
I was completely devastated and after a few fruitless weeks of consoling myself that I’ll get back to writing soon, I started panicking and then began wondering about my writing altogether.
I’ve had my fair share of writer’s block since I started writing 2 years ago, but this one was the worst I ever dealt with. I tried everything to get over it. Everything. I followed different versions of Writing Rituals, went for jogs, went out for dinners, read 15 books one after the other to break this bad spell of stupor, took full day’s off several times a week, tried writing flash fiction, tried doing Freewriting. But everything backfired and left me completely exhausted. 😦
Every time I tried to open my manuscript, I felt like staring at a blank wall for hours. It really frustrated me thatI, the girl-who-was-doing-so-good-with-her-writing suddenly turned into the girl-who-might-not-even-be able-to-complete-her-first-book!
It was literally one of the lowest points in my life because my first book meant everything to me.
At the end, almost giving up on my manuscript, I tried to divert my mind by agreeing to beta read a part of my Australian critique partner’s book. But then the most amazing thing happened!
As soon as I opened her book on my Mac and started reading it, I was struck by how beautiful and neat the file looked. And that was when it hit me.
I closed that file straight away and opened my own manuscript, and the moment I looked at the sad font of my manuscript and I knew why I wasn’t able to work further on it.
I immediately changed the of my MS from Courier Sans to Times New Roman. And…. Viola! Just like that, everything changed!
And the next thing I know, I was revising my manuscript!
I was done revising my manuscript in the next four days, and in those four days, I realized one thing – My book is really good!
You notice how I went from I-should-quit-writing to my-book-is-really-good? This is what I like to call as The Font Effect.
When I started writing my book’s first draft, I used the font Avener Book right till the time my manuscript was ready. Somehow writing in Avener Book helped me write for long hours without any headaches. I really liked it plus it looked beautiful in print. But when I was sending out the inquiries to Literary Agents, I formatted my manuscript according to the standard format and changed its font to 12 pt. Courier.
Since then my manuscript has been in Courieronly, and that’s where the problem began. Somehow my subconscious mind found it repulsive, or to be honest, plain ugly. I developed an aversion to Courier that I still can’t explain. I had a hard time reading more than a page at a time and that too without even it.
After changing the font to Times New Roman, I revised my book three times in one month, then edited it in the following month and sent it to my publisher (with whom I already signed an agreement by then) for the final editing.
Moral of the story – Fonts are very important. And we, as writers, should never underestimate their power.
As I see it, the importance of fonts, in general, is underrated, and most of the time their value gets completely lost amidst other “more important” things.
If you really think about it, fonts are one of the most used tools in a writer’s life.
Can you imagine what the hell would writers do without fonts?
What do you think about The Font Effect? What are your favorite fonts and why do you like them so much?
Feel free to share any stories or experiences you’ve had with fonts (or writing in general.) I love reading and replying to all your comments.
I’ve been asked this questions more than half a dozen times in the last month alone by my school friends and a few acquaintances, and last week when I had to write this answer for the FAQs section for my website, it got so long that I thought I might as well make it a post and leave a link back to it rather than taking up all the space with a single answer.
It always irritates me whenever anyone pings me on Facebook and start the conversation by saying “I never knew you liked writing” or something on the same lines. It irritates me because it reminds me of how I let my mother’s expectations get the better of me. It irritates me because I never ever told anyone what I wanted to do, not even my own self. So I thought I’d finally answer this question once and for all.
How I started writing…
Like most writers, I was not a child-writer (you know children who start writing beautiful – or shitty – stories from an early age.) Though I did love reading, or to be more specific stories. Cinderella was my favorite, and because of being left unattended due to my parents failing marriage, I used to think that I was living Cinderella’s life. Of course, the difference was that my parents were alive (lucky me!)
I used to spend almost all my time in pretend worlds (which now I know are called fictional worlds.) I use to line up all my dolls and bears and other toys upon returning from school and pretended to teach them whatever I learned in my classes that day or play house-house with my dolls and barbies and used to treat my 1.5-acre tree-covered property as a long forgotten island where I lived alone.
Whenever I was sad (which was oddly rare) I used to share my sorrows with my dolls and never real people. I have a disgusting amount of friends – zero to be exact – and I was happy being that way because I hated any company, except when it came to my toys and fictional friends (any guesses? Well, it was Cinderella.)
So I knew that I loved stories and books (and movies), but I found out that I wanted to be a writer on a very special day. I was in 6th grade and as per my school’s curriculum, we had our 1st ever library period in the very first week of starting of that school year. I was completely mesmerized because my school library was very different than my local library – it was my school library (you know! SCHOOL LIBRARY!)
Of course, the first thing that I wanted to read was a good book, but our Sister Principal gave strict instructions to our Librarian to let us pick books from a particular shelf only. That shelf had some educational mags and some similar uninteresting things and I hated the idea of being restricted. And by that point, my enthusiasm for being in the school library considerably dropped and I began missing my local library.
So like everyone else in my class I picked up whatever I could get my hands on and began leafing through it when all of a sudden I came across a poem. It was named something like The Tree (I’m not sure now), but I was so impressed by that poem that I wrote it down in my new ‘Library Notes’ notebook. Which was huge for me because until that day I never really cared for poetry.
After that I read it again and again, switching between the mag from which I copied it and my notebook, for the entire period. After that whenever I used to go the library (once every week) I used to copy down the poems or articles I found interesting. The thing was I wanted to write so badly that having no idea how to write something on my own, I started to copy whatever I thought was good.
And so on I kept doing till finally, I had to give up those mags for studying references (yeah, I was a nerd.) That was the first time when I actually contemplated becoming ‘one of those people who write all this’ and I remember thinking, after all, there have to be a few dedicated people who wrote stuff for these mags and books? You see, for whatever reason, I was simply not aware at that age that writing is a career option.
After that year I lost my normal library routine because I got caught up in studying to fulfill my mother’s dream of becoming an engineer. And thinking that writing was simply not a career option for me, by any strech of the imagination, I never ever told anyone about it (mostly because I buried this dream so deep inside of me that I barely thought about it again.) That is until I started reading again (and that was after my parents’ divorce at the age of 16.)
I started reading and my grades started dropping (much to my mom and step-father’s discontent.) Still, I kept on reading because that was the only escape I had. I read most of Sidney Sheldon’s books and then started reading Nicholas Sparks. After that, I read Twilight and other few books. Due to the scarcity of time, I used to read only at nights taking out half an hour or one hour out of my study time which would always end up in 4-5 hours of reading.
After that, I never really left reading, no matter how my grades were affected (and this is something I’m really happy about and proud of.)
Then I got into Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering and finally coming to my senses, I rebelled against my mom and step-father in my 2nd year of engineering and dropped out of it, and married Vishal. And after that, everything changed forever because I finally started thinking about what I wanted to do. Still, it took me some time to finally realize that I can become a writer and start writing whatever I wanted to. So after I did 3D Animation Film Making I got straight down to it. I created The Reading Bud and thought of starting with baby steps by writing reviews of books I read.
And then later I started this blog, and here I am 2 years later with my first book getting published and already half way through my second novel 🙂
BlogBattle is a weekly short story challenge in which participants write short stories using a single word for inspiration.You can visit the BB’s blog to find out more about it: Blogbattle: Inspired To Write.
I set my cup of tea down on the table careful not to spill it on the white cloth beneath it and, taking a deep breath, I say after gathering myself, “It’s not as easy as you think, Mom.”
“But it is,” She puts her cup down too and leans forward in her seat, “Look, Jess, I know the past year has been really tuff on you – first the accident, then Rick’s affair and then this,” she waves a hand at my belly and continues as if she’s not talking about her only daughter miscarrying her 6 weeks old unborn child, but simply making an observation about a filthy sack full of crap.
Looking at me she sighs heavily and continues, “But sweetie this is not how you deal with your problems. You can’t just take a break from your life and isolate yourself.” Adding more sugar to her tea, she continues, “You need to keep yourself busy. These things are not that significant dear. look at the bigger picture.”
When I start to protest, she raises a hand and continues her lecture, “All I’m saying is at least try to do something that’ll keep you busy and help you to get your mind off of such things.”
The clinking noise of her spoon makes it difficult for me to maintain a straight face. I start tapping my feet first slowly, then intensely and try to sound nonchalant, “And what exactly do you mean by ‘such things’?”
She looks up at me and furrows her brows for a second and then reclaiming her calm exterior she says, “You know what I mean, your accident, Rick’ betrayal, the baby and your failures on the whole.”
Unable to contain my anger any longer, my voice rises a notch, “My failures? What the hell do you mean by my failures?”
She sips her tea calmly and after patting her mouth with the napkin she says, “I didn’t mean to offend you, Jessie. It’s just a manner of speaking.”
The patting of my feet grows so intense that it starts to hurt me, “Seriously, mom?”
“What?” she says shrugging.
I pick up the spoon next to my cup and start pouring sugar in my coffee not wanting to fall for my mom’s sick game.
“Say something, Jessie. I came all the way here just to talk to you and this is how you treat me?”
I stop pouring sugar in my cup and tighten my grip on the spoon’s handle,”Stop it, Mom. Please. Just stop it!”
She sits straighter, making it clear that she disapproves my tone and says, “No, you stop it, Jessie. You need to face it. We both know that you’re blaming yourself for Rick’s affair. So say as much and be done with it. You can’t feel guilty forever.”
“No, that is so not the case, Mom. I’m not guilty of anything! He cheated on me not because I wasn’t good enough for him, but because he is a worthless piece of shit who doesn’t know what loyalty is. So please don’t go there because that’s really not the case.”
“Oh, but I know that this is exactly what’s troubling you.”
“Oh, so now you are what? A break-up specialist?”
“Well, considering my experiences I think you can call me that.”
Unable to contain the storm brewing inside me I look at her and fixing her with a glare I say gritting my teeth, “Stop it already. You’re doing it again.”
“What am I doing?”
Giving up, I get up with a jerk, pushing the chair behind me, and throw the napkin on the table, “Nothing.”
“Don’t you stomp off in front of me Jessie. I am your mother.”
I stop in my tracks and turning around I try to bite back the words that form in my mouth, but knowing her as well as I do, I let the words out of my mouth, “You’re again getting it all wrong, Mom. And that’s why I was trying to avoid meeting you in the first place. You just love assuming things. You don’t even try to find out what’s really wrong. All you know is to make others feel miserable for all the things that are going wrong in their life.”
“No. That is absurd!”
“Yeah? Well, tell this to someone who hasn’t spend 20 years of their lives living with you under the same roof.”
“That’s enough. I’m leaving.”
“Good for you. And please don’t bother checking up on me after today, because I won’t be staying here anymore.”
She gets up from her chair and throwing her purse over her shoulder she says, “Why? Is this place not good enough for you now that I know where you are?”
I shake my head and release a long breath.
“At least tell your old mother where she can find you in case if there’s an emergency or something.”
“Well, you won’t be calling me in any kind of emergency if you knew where I’ll be.”
She turns around and looks me in the eyes, “Where are you going, Jessie?”
“I’m going to Dewar.”
Her mouth falls open and she turns red. Throwing her off guard this way, even for a minute, makes me feel so much better. She quickly regains her cold composure and narrows her eyes at me as if I’m a 4-year-old girl, “And might I ask where will you be staying?”
She studies my face for a long time and then quietly makes a beeline for the door but before leaving, she stops abruptly and turns around, “Goodbye, Jessie. I hope you have a great time with your father.”
She spits out the words so ferociously that it feels more like “Rot in hell with your father,” which, I think, is exactly what she wanted to say.
You can read the previous parts of Jessie: Story About A Girl series here: