Yesterday, I finished writing my first short story in six months.
At first it felt like I was dragging a ten-storey building for a walk through the park at the hottest hour of the day, but then the words started to flow – a continuous trickle – then the rocks cracked and the water rushed through with the force of a waterfall. When I finally typed ‘THE END’, a rush of adrenaline made me dance around the room.
I had been feeling like a live corpse buried in winter for the longest time, brooding over the loss of a friendship, thinking of all the ‘what ifs’ and then trying to hide it by writing some story I thought I would be enthusiastic to write about. But in fact, writing any kind of story felt like climbing up a rock wall without any grips.
Then, it occured to me that maybe I should write about the very thing that was bothering me. It’s not something I want to let people read, was my first thought. I don’t want to relive the memory anyway. Then I lay in bed at night, replaying the very incident in my mind, over and over again.
I wrote the story.
When you bare your soul to the paper, it will heal you. As I wrote about it, I saw a different perspective of the situation. I saw from the eyes of other characters in the story and grudgingly felt what they were feeling. Storytelling has that kind of power to open your mind.
I don’t think it made me less bitter or less jaded, but I have come to realise that what happened is over and what I should do now is build the concrete wall behind me, not in front of my path.
So whoever said that you need to be passionate about what you write has a very good point. The anguish that you have can become the very thing that heals your soul once you find the courage to put the pen on the paper. You may never show that story to anyone, you may even delete the story when its done, (I’m going to keep mine to remember this empowerment writing has given me) but whatever you do, once you have written it, remember to accept the strength your story will give you and move forward.