To whom it may concern…

letterI’m twenty six years old, almost twenty seven, and in that short time frame I’ve learned that life is rarely fair. But it goes on. Whether we like it or not, life goes on.

Maybe we live in a dangerous world. Maybe this world has always been “unsafe” for those who weren’t sure what to do.

And I’d like to tell you there’s nothing to be afraid of, I’d like to tell you that failures build a man, that every fall is also a step forward. That what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger…

But the truth is that, most times, what doesn’t kill you makes you wish it did.

Without a specific reason, I’ve always been most afraid that I would die alone. And everything I ever did in this life was because of this bizarre feeling. For example, when I was a kid I wanted to be able to talk to anyone about anything. So I began to read a lot of books, to watch a lot of TV shows and sports and stuff like that…

Of course, I didn’t get out of the house too much. Until high-school I didn’t really have friends. That’s why I started writing in the first place, I guess.

I was alone.

Then again, it wasn’t the best option. Writing because you’re alone is like taking painkillers to heal a wound. Yeah, it stops the pain, but only for a few moments.

Then came high-school, which is a different kind of war. It’s a four year period which forms much of your personality. I’ve made a lot of friends. And I’m being somewhat modest when I say a lot.

But I had to give up writing. I had to keep that side of me a secret.

And then everything changed.

Looking back, I honestly can’t realize how it all happened. The free-fall. In less than a year I had nothing. No friends, no money, no future.

Do you know how it feels when all you want is to simply live another day? When you dream and dream and dream, but you feel you haven’t got the strength to anything other but dream? When you spend year after year all alone…

When hope dies.

During those years I learned pretty much everything I know about life. By myself, without anyone to tell me. I learned that my tragedy is all mine. Pain can’t be compared or truly understood; there’s no such thing as genuine compassion. We sift everything through the filter of our own perception.

I had become a puny man in a world that was too big.

Like they say, I had reached the bottom of the shaft, and all I could do was ask, “Why? Why?”

And the only answer I ever found was, “Why not?”

At the same time I realized that if I don’t change something, no one was going to help me. Like I wrote previously, I’ve spent all my life fighting against the monster of solitude, and all of a sudden I had realized that we are utterly and inconsolably alone.

I was free to do whatever I wanted. And that’s what I did.

Every once in a while someone asks me for writing advice. “How do I write a good story? What makes good writing good?”

There is only one answer.

Find the thing you’re afraid of the most, rummage through your brain until it hurts, and write about it.

Because in all those years that’s what I did. I wrote about what I had and lost, about what I never had, and about all that I was certain I’d never have.

And I wrote until all my wounds healed. Now I’m working on inflicting myself new ones.

As much as art is a constructive process, in which we play God, at the same time is also a destructive process, in which we break pieces of our soul and throw them on paper.

I think you can get everything you want in life, that you can figure out who you want to be, what you want to do, and all that stuff. I believe you’re capable of wonderful things, as long as you have the courage to accept that it’s never going to be easy.

As long as you accept that there will also be pain involved. Maybe lots and lots of it. And you just have to keep fighting. You have to constantly reinvent yourself until you discover who you really are.

And, yes, at times you’ll be afraid. At times you’ll feel comfortable, and you’ll simply want to freeze a moment, hoping it will last forever.

But you’ve got to remind yourself, over and over again, that there are no destinations in life. Only roads.

No matter who you are or what you do, life’s full of moments of doubt, of petty frustrations, or sacrifices. Sometimes you’ve got to go down roads that appear in no maps whatsoever. And then your compass breaks.

And if you look behind you, all you can see is a road paved with regrets. And it seems that before you lies this road going nowhere.

Maybe sometimes it’s well to remember that “nowhere” is a lot closer to “anywhere” than we might think.

***

Hi guys,

If you want to help this crazy Romanian kid out to keep his projects alive, to expand, to grow, you can do so by pledging one dollar (yup, you read that right) here.

P.S. Of course, you can contribute moreif you want to.

Also, you can purchase advertising options here.

Cheers,

Cristian

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19 thoughts on “To whom it may concern…

  1. My favorite line, “But the truth is that, most times, what doesn’t kill you makes you wish it did.” There are times where although I have felt like this temporarily, nevertheless, I still felt it and can mos def identify. Great read!

  2. Hi, I am curious how you managed to publish your first couple of novels as I am in the process of writing one now and would like to publish it though I am very green and not sure the best route to take. show me the way…

    • Hi Jeffrey,

      Check kdp.amazon.com if you wish to self-publish a Kindle E-book. Also, check Createspace.com if you want to self-publish a paperback. There are a couple more outlets, such as smashwords and such, but I’d say that at first you should start with those two, since they are the most user friendly and Amazon.com is a huge market anyway.

      That being said, you’ll have to do a bit of research on how to properly format your book for Kindle, how to create the interior design for a paperback, how to design a cover. Stuff like that. Of course, there are guidelines available, so that should make your work easier.

  3. Similar to my life. I grew up in the mountains of Appalachia. I wasn’t really popular until high school and then it was only because I played football. At some point I came to the conclusion that it’s better to have a few friends who you can truly trust than a following of people who you barely know.

  4. As I was reading this what came to mind was an idea Fredrick Neitche talks about, that if what your doing is genuinely aiming for is the highest possible good then the things that you need to survive and to thrive will deliver themselves to you. Or you could say that . If you dare to do the most challenging thing you can conceptualize then life will work out for the better . It looks like your challening yousrself.

  5. Wow. such deep and liquid writing. Sounds like music when read. Yeah, “what doesn’t kill you,makes you stronger”.. But there comes a time when all these words don’t make sense. Words and sentences become a blur behind the steel curtain of reality that leaves an empty feel within. The space of dreams remain. But only to hurt. And life seems biased. The thought that we have to die alone is, I’m sure often realized by many. Its easy to shrug off these thoughts for some. For others it keeps recurring. Perhaps that’s why its important to be comfortable in solitude ( which i thoroughly an unable to do). At the end of the day, we are all alone. Every single person.

  6. Your words are refreshing, Cristian. My angst has always been an endless search for happiness deep inside my soul, thinking that if I treat every day as the first day of the rest of my life and ignore the past, that eventually happiness will be the destination. But reading your words, I am thinking that should not be the goal at all. Maybe it should be acceptance that “there are no destinations in life. Only roads…And if you look behind you, all you can see is a road paved with regrets. And it seems that before you lies this road going nowhere.” The proximity of nowhere to anywhere, as you point out, is intriguing.

  7. Your article is an inspiring one. For writers, especially, who are ultra-sensitive creatures, existence in this world is problematic, and you’ve dealt with that subject well and accurately.

    There’s only one statement to which I feel I must reply: Filtered perception or not, social workers with weird inner agendas notwithstanding, there is such a thing as genuine compassion. I’ve both exercised it myself and been its recipient, and I can tell you that it is not only alive but a primary reason for the existence for which we struggle.

    Write on, my friend

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