When we remember that it – writing – is a gift, we begin to recognize the tip of its potential. How it is a flashlight, how it is available in our bag of tools, with ever-lasting power. To use it is to shine a light, to guide us, you, yes you, through that maze.
The prisoners in the cell at least know that they are imprisoned and that’s why they try to escape–not a good thing, but it is what it is. Some of them might even be released after they complete their term. But what about us? The people who are trapped in the prison of life. When will our term end? Will we never even strive to escape? Will we never meet our freedom? If yes, then how?
Being a scientist has forced me to look at everything through black and white tinted glasses. In my wish list of manuals to survive the experience we call ‘life’ I also once wanted a ‘how to write without failing’ manual. Co-incidentally that is when Dipa Sanatani revealed her second book The Merchant of Stories. It is the kind of book I’ve wanted to read for a long time.
“Giving importance to money over art may cause problems. Artists may start feeling insecure and disheartened to see their work not being appreciated after putting so much effort into it. Losing patience makes them act differently. For fame and money they may sell their souls. But those artists who know the power of patience will keep exploring and experimenting till they leave a mark of their own.”
Every time I feel this way, I shove my write-up aside, as far away from me as possible, even if the guilt chews me from inside. No matter how hard I try, I don’t seem to come up with anything at all. I went through this feeling about a couple of thousand times before I understood something very important about writing and writer’s block.
The constant dedication that is required from them to produce something wonderful from their craftsmanship – something so beautiful that even the artist stands in awe of what they have created – is like an addiction. The euphoria of their success stays with them for ages as their work remains with them as a constant reminder of the heights they have reached.
There is a certain poetic stereotype that is linked to the thought of a ‘great’ writer – The Tortured Artist. Take any famous novelist or poet that you know of that doesn’t come under this time period – Mark Twain, Sylvia Plath, Emily Dickenson, Edgar Allan Poe. What do these people have in common?