Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Writing is like prostitution...

“Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for love, and then for a few close friends, and then for money.” Moliere
So let me tell you how I started this journey . Like I said I was sitting outside a sushi bar in terminal three Heathrow waiting impatiently for my flight. I was of course about three hours too early because as a child I had this instilled in me – that it was better to be early for a flight than late- that you may as well be sitting at an airport than sitting at home- either way your are waiting somewhere. This of course does not apply to ridiculously early flights when in fact you could still be tucked up in bed catching a few more well needed minutes of sleep.
I was watching people eat sushi and a sliver of envy ran through me. I love sushi, it was around about lunch time I was facing 9 hours of cramped aeroplane conditions and pre-packaged meals where it didn’t matter whether you picked the chicken or lamb they both tasted the same. I thought I could do with some sushi, instead of the depressing looking £5.00( airports are such rip-offs)  packet sandwich that I held in my hand.  And I thought then to myself no matter how much I could try to convince myself otherwise I am not a risk taker. Scared to eat Sushi before a flight just because it was a high risk  food, I wouldn’t do it, neither would I eat in a restaurant alone.  So I had two major hang ups and whilst I was contemplating my inadequacies I thought of a character developing out of my own issues. So I named her and as I said yesterday  a story began to form in my mind, but this time instead of distracting myself with duty free I took out a tiny notebook and pen I had in my bag and started to write. I wrote furiously, my hand could not keep up with my brain as it churned the in’s and outs of my protagonist. Before I knew it my flight was called and suddenly the world as I saw it changed.
As I clambered into my window seat and fastened my seatbelt still clutching my notepad and pen, it was as if the whole world slowed down. In two hours I had turned from normal person going on holiday to a writer, I had changed. I wanted to notice what people said, how they said it, their mannerisms. As I flew over time zones I wanted to capture anything and everything I could to use in my writing. The way people in India use the word “one” more often than  “a” or “an”, like “pass me one apple” instead of pass me an apple”  and “carton” they always use the word carton instead of box. It’s not incorrect but when you write speech it makes more sense to add these minor almost obscure cultural  differences in your writing. It is just more genuine, more believable to the reader. It is very important. Well I think so. 
I am sure all writers must see the world differently, depending  of course on the type of writer they are I guess. Writers in my opinion are of course creative but not eccentric like artists?!! Most people I know who are extremely creative are slightly “off the beaten path”, they are never on time, hate any kind of organisation and work to their own timing. What is even better is that they make up their own rules as they go along. It is a fabulous quality that I admire but I don’t possess.  I am organised not overly so, but if I need to get something done I generally make a list and start ticking things off. I rarely procrastinate  and am mostly always on time.  The thought of this makes me worry. I don’t know all that many writers; are they the same as me? or are they erratic? It would be quite hard to complete a book if you were not organised, which is another lesson I have learnt along the way. Writing is not as easy as it looks!!! But if all writers have this crazy streak to them which I think I am lacking then I worry, I worry for my writing. I hope this is not the case! 

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed reading it. I'm supposed to be somewhere else in a minute but I stuck to reading the story. I like the quality of your blog :D
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