Monday, July 04, 2005

Why I write...

There are days when I write like one possessed, words, ideas come to me like leaping flames and I write like a raging fever. I slash, rewrite, read, re-read and all this time... words keep forming out of nowhere... it is as if it is not me who is writing but some fiery red-eyed, sleep-deprived Medusa and I pant and struggle to keep up. But I feel like a goddess on Mount Parnassus. I feel invincible and drunk in the wine of forever-ness and literary highdom.

And then there are those days when I cannot write... I sit for hours with a blank piece of paper, occasionally starting something which sounds good to me as I embark and then I realise it is only the corpse of an idea... swollen with my forced writing... it does not live like the other ideas did, does not breathe, dance in abandon, smile, entice, grieve... nothing. I give in to dramatics feeling these rituals might appease the Muses at whose altar I worship... I rub my eyes, beat my fists, pinch my forehead, pull my hair and yet nothing. I am engulfed in a wave of melancholy. I feel worthless. I feel all alone and screaming at the bottom of a huge pit. I wonder, why I suffer, nay, even gladly submit to such doomed sorrow.

Maybe because the joy of writing something which I know contains a spark in it makes me feel like the Almighty. Maybe because all that sorrow is nothing when compared with the joy, however short-lived and transitory it is. But also because I have fought this urge and lost and learnt that there is no escape. Also because, now, I don't want to escape it... I love the high that writing affords me. And I love the feeling of belonging that it grants me... into the hallowed company of fellow writers. The self-doubt and pre-writing agony, I know is common though each suffers alone and some more so than others... but out of that agony, at times (however rare those times are), one is able to produce a story, an essay, a poem, just a few lines, something, on reading which, in your heart you know, you have created something which breathes and lives. So what if such occasions are preceded by numerous others which are depressingly infertile.

And hence I write, in hope, everytime, that this time I will come up with yet another of those rare pieces which I can read and not tear apart in disgust, treasure even.

Why do you write?