You know what I like about pursuing a certain discipline? It’s that it teaches me about everything else in life. Because the way you do something is the way you do everything.
Writing is no different. I’ve learned so much more about myself thanks to the craft. For one, it’s taught me how much of a procrastinating bum I am.
Besides that, it’s also highlighted how much I can dream, yet not pursue said dream out of fear, or laziness, or who knows what else. In a way, writing has helped me address some problems, and come to terms with others.
And here’s me coming to terms with certain… not so fun facts about writing, thanks to writing.
Before we begin, I’d just like to announce my cyberpunk short’s acceptance into the Fish Eats Lion Redux anthology which, for me, puts the rad into my trad-publishing ambitions.
I’m pretty proud of this piece, since Singaporeans were given priority for acceptance, and here I am, a random Malaysian, just trying to belong among the other talented writers from across the Causeway.
Maybe I’ve finally paid my dues. They say you need to get your first million words down before you get to the good stuff. Or maybe I just got lucky.
Either way, here’s a totally scientific (and totally not anecdotal or anything) post about why short-story writing would benefit the novelist, even if they don’t plan to pursue the genre.
You wake up, you check your phone. You want to know the latest stats for the article you’d posted yesterday. Two views. No likes on Facebook. One spam comment.
An e-mail comes in. It’s from that fiction competition you joined five months ago. “Thank you for your participation,” it reads. That’s always a bad sign, and a quick scroll through the rest of the message proves it.
I’m crushed under a 90kg man, beads of sweat trickling down his chin before finding their home in my eyeballs. His shoulder threatens to dislodge my jaw, and all I can breathe is chest hair. I’ve spent four minutes in this position, and I have two more to go. During times like this, I ask myself: “Why did I come to class today?”