I don’t write as much as I used to. Fiction, I mean. Writing articles comes easy to me. Just a matter of sitting down and punching those keys.
But stories? The real stories? The ones I hope could one day come true? I don’t write them into existence.
To be honest, I don’t know why. Or how. Don’t you find it frustrating that we live in a world that makes it almost impossible to admit that you don’t know something?
I don’t know why I don’t write as much as I used to.
I am afraid I’ve stopped believing my words to be magic. My words are the words of someone who has become so absorbed by the pettiness of life that he can no longer create. He is no longer the creator, but rather the creation.
I am the side-effect of all the words I wrote when I was a dreamer.
It was November 2010. Maybe it was a dark and stormy night, I don’t recall. But I was going through a dark night of the soul, that’s for sure.
You know, a proper dark night of the soul, when you feel your chest being crushed under the weight of so many dying dreams that nothing can offer even a bit of comfort.
When the usual hack of, “Well, others have lost empires,” doesn’t help at all.
That’s when I found out about NaNoWriMo. I found out that I could self-publish stories. On Amazon. And sell those stories to people for money, which I could then use to purchase various goods that are needed for one’s survival.
I thought it to be the best thing ever, and so I dropped out of college and started punching those damn keys.
There were a couple of things that I hadn’t thought through though:
I had never written a novel.
I had never written a novel in English.
I had no idea what it took to actually self-publish a book.
I had no one to sell the damn thing to.
But, as I’m so fond of saying, we sometimes need a lot of courage to do something. Other times, we just need to be so dumb that we have no idea what we’re getting ourselves into.
One of the most famous stories in Homer’s Odyssey is that of Ulysses encountering the sirens.
Upon his return home from the Trojan war, Ulysses stumbles upon the sirens – magical creatures of the sea, whose singing bewitches sailors and lures them to their deaths.
Ulysses, aware of the deadly nature of the their hypnotizing voices, instructs his men to plug their ears with beeswax and to tie him to the ship’s mast. As the ship approached the siren’s island, Ulysses becomes enchanted by their singing. He commands that his crew untie him, but his men, their ears full of beeswax, ignore the desperate please of their captain, rowing the boat to safety.
Unfortunately, that’s not quite how the story goes…
When I was a kid, I thought I was destined for great things. I was born on Christmas Day, exactly one year after they shot Ceausescu, the only ruler of a Communist country to ever be executed. Now, in the same spot, they’re building a shopping mall.
Maybe because I was born when I was born, I don’t really listen to what other people tell me I should do. I never did.
I don’t like authority. I don’t like to follow rules.
I am not afraid of the consequences of not doing what I am told. I am not where I’d like to be in life because I don’t like most people. I have long suspected they don’t like me back.
I am a rebel without a cause, garnering a bit of applause here and there from those who read my stories.
My home country of Romania is last in the European Union when it comes to reading books. The book market here is the stuff of nightmares for any writer.
What do these two sentences mean?
I shouldn’t be able to do what I do. I shouldn’t have attempted it. And I don’t think that you ever gave it a thought while reading my posts.
My parents never read a single thing I wrote because my words are foreign to them. They never read my stories or novels. Odds are, they never will. They never understood my dream of becoming a writer. Nor did they encourage it. But they also didn’t try to talk me out of it. Too often.