Saturday, April 25, 2009

Rites of Passage

I grow weary of my own writing, each collection of words weaved together over months and years – the older ones I have stopped relating to a long time ago, and the more recent ones seem colorless, monotonous, uninspired. The only thing I can appreciate in my collected work is my effort to be honest. Even though perceptions are ever-changing, any given piece of writing reflects my reality or my fiction at that point, and in that it is as honest as it could have ever been.

Everything else seems so pointless. I am too emotional, and though the most overused word in all my work is love, it is also the most misused. I am certainly capable of being intense, even passionate, I am capable of feeling strongly and deeply, and I am capable of great attachment and fondness, but love is elusive and incomprehensible. I don’t know the nature of love, and I don’t even know whether I am capable of it or indeed what qualifies one to be capable of it. Altogether I conclude that I am too emotional in my writing, even though I become less and less demonstrative in my life – a process that is scary and stabilizing at the same time.

I find myself criticizing the content and style of my work almost while I am writing it, it seems to me that I have pondered over the same narrow subjects for too much time and beyond that is a great impenetrable abyss of nothingness. At the same time, people in my life increasingly criticize my withdrawal into myself, they complain about my seeming lack of emotion – it is such a drastic change for them. To them, I am completely changed; the same girl who was so vocal about her affection for them is withdrawn and silent now.

The dislike that I’ve developed of my own creations is disconcerting. It used to define my identity in some ways, but now I shy away from calling myself a writer, and I don’t make an effort to show anyone what I write. The only thing I know for sure is that I don’t know enough about the things I want to write about. I’ve been armed with tools to crave out beautiful sculptures but I don’t have the material. The cool marble slabs, the physical mass of a rock to shape – I don’t have it. I have tools and thin air. And the air is tinged with limitations of geography and experience.

My reality is narrow enough to be a prison cell. There are only so many stories I can tell, of madness and neuroses and disillusionment. I grow weary of them all. That’s not completely me, and I hate to give myself and the readers a fallacy wrapped in the trappings of some sort of truth. Yet it’s hard to tap what is beyond. I can continue looking inward, perhaps even continue writing about it, but I’m not content with just that anymore. Just like I am not content with just writing anymore, haven’t been for years. The only possible solution I see now is to immerse myself in something else, something totally different.

Reading, learning and seeking have acquired a new urgency now – I feel an almost desperate need to delve into these things. Any time spent not pursuing a new project or gathering knowledge seems like time wasted. I feel like I was paddling in a shallow pool and am now taking stronger, deeper, braver strokes to the deep ocean. A beautiful, drastic change; I hope that somewhere along my journey I will reach an island where I will find a way to express myself, it is my responsibility now to do some of the most amazing work I will do in my lifetime and it is my responsibility also to see that writing is involved in some way. Two more years where they will continue to arm me with tools and other peoples’ universe and I must read extensively, delve deeper, and seek more: there is a lot of time to find my island and find my voice. Maybe I will be able to say something substantial soon.

I must hold on.

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