Rainy day in Singapore. Mustard-coloured armchair placed in a corner. Reading the blog of a published author. Chubby roses. Hexagonal-shaped corner, with windows, turned into a reading nook. Wall-to-wall bookcase. …and wall-to-wall windows. Savouring cold bread dipped in pipping hot day old fish curry. Period house with cracking floor. Indie tarot decks that come in a tuck box. Big bookstores and thin paperback. Wireless gadgets. Books that can be pocketed.
Coin-operated laudromat. Soaking the Friday afternoon vibes at work. Foreign language songs played on repeat. Singular-use kitchen gadgets. Japan.
Some time ago I wrote about how COVID inspired me to support a local bookshop in my notebook. Last week, I revisited the draft, thinking I could polish it a bit and share it here. As I reread my own handwriting, my brain went “Wtf did I write ?!“. The draft was bad. It was so bad that I am not sure whether I can even call it a shitty first draft.
I spent that evening rearranging the paragraphs, smoothing the flow, and fixing the grammar. I removed more than half of the sentences, read it from the bottom up, even translate-read it to Bahasa.
Nothing worked. It was rubbish.
It was close to midnight when I closed the laptop and declared: “writing is hard”.
Writing is hard. That’s not news at all. Maybe that’s why there are so many blogs wtitten about writing. Because as they say:
those who can’t, teach.
I, on the other hand — I recently realized — whined instead. I have pages upon pages of journal entries that can attest it. It being my obsessive-whining about writing, blogging, being tired of both, not writing enough, my handwriting, taking a break from it, wanting to quit, unable to quit, asking tarot cards what should I do about my blogs.
Name any obsession over writing, I am sure I have written a whiney post about it in my journal. My journal is slowly turning into the little black book of my writing life. Which coincidently is black in color, though not really little size wise.
So I made a deal to myself.
I am allowed to whine and continue whining about writing as long as I write. Even if it’s so bad that it doesn’t belong in the shitty first drafts drawer.
Doing Facemask-Thursdays together with my three best-friends.
My Appa buying me books and in-scripting my full-name, the date, the place where he got me the book from on the first page. It makes me wonder when was the last time he went to a bookstore? Even to buy himself something.