NON FICTION: To The Writer Who Changed My Life

Man staring up at skies

Photo: Matese Fields

A stranger changed my life. Someone whose identity I’ve forgotten. I don’t remember the byline, neither do I remember his face in the pictures, but he’d single-handedly set me on a path I didn’t know I would take.

I was a hairdresser, going through the motions every day just to pay the bills. On a particularly quiet day, while I was flipping through all the FHM magazines, I came across this story about an unfit writer’s journey to fighting an amateur boxing match.

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NON FICTION: Sometimes, All A Writer Needs Is A Little Bit Of Faith

Hands writing in notebook

Photo: Cathryn Lavery

“Maybe your writing sits better with westerners than with Asians,” Nick said, comparing between the lacklustre performance of my blog posts against the attention (read: more than five readers) for my Medium articles.

I nodded with reluctance, only half-agreeing. It’s not as if there wasn’t a thriving reading community in Malaysia, and there was also a good amount of westerners on WordPress.

But yet there was no denying it: I’d posted the exact same works on both platforms only to get much more traction on Medium. As much as I’d like to believe that hard work and talent trumps all, I’ll bet that more people will read this article on Medium than on my blog.

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FICTION: The Thread Between Soulmates

Man and woman lying down face to face

Photo: Toa Heftiba

Floaters are funny little things. They disappear when you don’t pay attention, but the moment you spot one, you realise just how many there are, drifting quietly in your vision, just waiting to be noticed.

That’s how lovelines look like to me. You can’t really tell until you consciously keep an eye out for them. Don’t bother Googling what lovelines are. It’s just a term I came up with, one that you’re probably curious about right now. I certainly was.

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NON FICTION: Do The Littlest Things To Achieve Your Biggest Goals

Sculpture of muscly back

Photo: Simone Pellegrini

It takes 80,000 words to make a novel, about 10,000 words to be fluent in another language, and 52 kilometres of running to complete a marathon.

These are daunting figures in their own right, but perhaps less intimidating when viewed from this perspective: writing 250 words, learning one sentence, and running for 15 minutes each day.

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NON FICTION: Why I’ve Stopped Wishing For A Perfect Life

Three women laughing

Photo: Priscilla Du Preez

It seems as if my life’s just about making one blunder after another.

Things have took a turn for the better compared to ten years ago, but the mistakes keep coming. I still have issues to work on, wounds to heal, and a life to improve, yet I often mess them up by doing the wrong things.

Looking back, I wish I’d studied harder, worked harder, and didn’t waste so much time just loafing around. Who knows what I might’ve become had I applied myself much earlier in life?

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