Beware the man of one book
Image by pyth0ns.

I did not start to think of myself as an amateur writer until a few years ago — shall I be honest, it is not more than two years ago, perhaps three. A friend remarked on a short story I described a picture with, that it would make the perfect beginning of a book. That, in addition to my friend being a writer, inspired me to follow her advice and turn the few lines into a book.

It proved hard, to not say impossible. I worked on and off on the plot for almost two years until deciding it was a hopeless case and that I should leave it and pursue other projects. And so I did; my next story currently growing one chapter at a time whenever inspiration strikes.

Yesterday, however, I remember the story I had abandoned and all but forgotten. I was on the train, riding through the most wonderful beech forests and rolling hills, when I all of a sudden realised that was the very kind of world my very first story was supposed to have been set in.

And, no sooner than I had thought that though, the main character of my forgotten story waltzed into my consciousness with pleading eyes, wondering why she had not heard from me in such a long time.

At that moment, I wondered the very same thing.

And the more I thought about it, the more I realised I am not over her story; I simply do not know how to handle it. In order for her story to be written a fair amount of research is due, but due to the nature of the story itself, I am unsure whether the final product will be worth the effort I would be required to invest in it.

It is food for thought, indeed!

I do have to admit, that I am one of those dreadful people who likes to see results. I do not undertake a project unless I know some success can be derived from it. If I spend hours and hours without end contemplating a story, and months painfully typing it down, I would like to one day see it being enjoyed by others; justifying my hard work.

My forgotten story is however not the kind of story I think would have any chance of ever reaching the hands of others, which brings me to the dilemma which made me abandon my character the first time around; I love her and her story, and I want everything I intended to happen to her to come true, but I don’t believe in the story per se.

It’s painful, to say the least!

But, I am curious, if any of you who read this are writers, have you ever been in the same situation which I have found myself in? How did you solve it? Is there a point in completing a story for personal satisfaction alone? Anything else that comes to mind? Or, do you think some stories are best left short, allowed to speak for themselves?

The Story:

A heavy book lies on a table, its cover says it is several centuries old.
As it is opened, it screams, blinded by the light its pages have been hidden from for so long.
A cloud of dust rises from the ancient pages, the old parchment fragile and dry.

From one of the pages, a face looks out on the world.
It is the drawing of a young woman, who studies the world with interest.
When she was shut inside the book for the last time, the world was so different from what it is now.
She wants to be part of it, but can not as the parchment she is drawn on is the only border she never will be able to cross.

Advertisements

Regrets

March 22, 2010

My Little friend follows netdog around
Image by netdog

She had always been bit of a loner. In some ways it was because she had chosen to, in others because she had failed to find friends.

That changed when she came across a red-haired girl when she still was very little. They became the best of friends and spent all their time together.

But for a loner such a blessing may sometimes turn bitter, and she found that she needed some time for herself. Foolishly, young as she was, she believed she had grown tired of her very best friend.

She ended their friendship.

Not long thereafter she changed her mind. She could see her best friend walk through the same corridors as she did in their new school, and she missed her. But she was too embarrassed about her former rejection that she dared not apologise.

When three years had passed she had found the strength she had lacked and spoke to her friend again, saying that she missed her and desired to go back to the way they were.

Her friend only laughed and said that it was too late for that, and that she did not desire to ever be spoken to again.

The girl walked away from her former red-haired friend, not desiring to admit she had broken down in tears.

More time passed, and the girl reproached herself for the folly that had robbed her of her first friend in life. Sometimes she could see her red-haired friend walk past in the distance, reminding her of the mistake she had committed.

Such regrets never fade, continuously being stirred to the surface by reminders that it was a mistake easily prevented. A decade later, it still hurt.

Candy Coated
Image by jakevol2 on Flickr.

The entire day had been spent in front of the computer, that modern marvel that had replaced the versatility and charm of pen and paper with sterile pixels. Chemical formulae, mathematical equations and labelled compounds had each figured on the back-lit screen, each as important as disinteresting. Fundamental as the concepts were, they had failed to appeal to her curiosity and imagination.

Despite the occasional diversion, in the shape of more inspirational writings on evolution, individual thoughts, or general prose, she felt the day had been a waste. Surely, a lot had been accomplished–but nothing of value. The day could have been spent in countless more appealing ways: the map on her wall could have been coloured and life granted to her imagination’s continent at last, or its inhabitants could have been allowed to speak and contemplate–to come to terms with who they were and what their desires were.

The notes scattered before her–with their chemical compounds and skeletal formulae–tasted bitterly in her sight. It felt silly an entire future could depend upon something that so evidently was not for her. Having forgotten who she once had been, she had failed to savour the challenge. As long as she managed to rise with the earliest birds the following morning and travel for hours to attend an assessment a mere half-an-hour in length her efforts would not have been in vain. Beyond that, she found her mind preoccupied with other desires and dreams.

The indoor air had grown stuffy, the illumed room an isolated space outside which darkness already had fallen, the skies a fading blue as the sun dipped beyond the clouded horizon. Failing to mimic the splendour of the sun the street lights spilled copper onto the ground. In an instant the decision was made, and even before she had risen and collected her pink-lined coat from where it had spent the day; in the shadows of oblivion.

Exiting her little cavern of light–the home she once had feared she never would find–she wandered aimlessly into the evening, swallowed by the mild air and veiled by the murkiness. The atmosphere was perfect; cold enough to numb her senses, but without painfully nibbling her fingers and nose. No mists accompanied her breaths and her thoughts were clear–cleared, perhaps, for none swirled beyond her eyes.

Blackbirds sang in the rose and blackberry thickets the winter winds had stripped of their grandeur. Yet, symphonies were delivered from within their blackened expanse, the birds marvelling over the beauty of the evening. Their melodies reminded her of the songs she had savoured in another life; one lost, but never forgotten. That life had been lived in-between dusk and dawn upon the misty fields of mid summer. It had been an untroubled life, and as such, destined to never last beyond the span of summer itself.

Peculiarly, the birds spoke in a different tongue. She knew their vowels and the other-worldly sounds that emanated from their silken throats, yet, there was an element to their tune that was foreign; ethereal in the silver context. The many miles that separated her lives were evident in the accent of the avian musicians, so soft it was barely perceptible, its nature impossible to palpate. Still, despite their novelty, the sounds soothed her senses, the spring evening reminding her of those long-lost summer nights.

Little Treasures

January 24, 2010

Little Treasure

The small treasures are often the most precious, the ones with impressive craftsmanship, the ones that are small and delicate.

And then there are the ones that contain memories, the most precious little treasures that float on the air like feathers in bubbles and that are more valuable than anything tangible.

2009 is Finally History

January 2, 2010

Big Ben of London

Although I started 2009 with blogging quite frequently, my posts grew fewer and farther apart for each passing month until they completely ceased. This was not really what I had intended would happen, but life can be quite unpredictable–as I am certain most understand.

Last year was quite a milestone for me, with both ups and down–2009 offered me both the best and worst experiences of my life this far!

The year started with my application for undergraduate study being rejected by the University of Cambridge, but once the initial blow had subsided, I realised that it was all for the best as I therefore would go to London.

Having struggled through spring and summer half-heartedly and battling severe melancholia, I then went to London.

I was enamoured by the city from the very first moment. People warned me that it was all consistent with the honeymoon-syndrome and that reality soon would catch up with me. It never did, much to my surprise. My infatuation was instead replaced with a deep affection for the country.

This made me realise that I had been right all along believing that an allocation would do me much good, and I intend to remain in the United Kingdom indefinitely. It is all I ever wished for it to be, only better. If I only escape isolation and find happiness, I cannot wish for anything more.

The allocation did however also have its downsides.

The first year of the course which I studied mostly consists of subjects I believed I had left in the past, and to study chemistry and thermodynamics has done me little good. Hopefully those subjects shall not bother me for a few months now–not until the exams are to be written.

Housing in London is also deplorable. My folly knew no limits when I believed that the standards would be the same in Stockholm and London alike. I only laugh now, having learnt the extent of my mistake the hard way as I went from staying with friends to being homeless, navigating between hotels a few days at a time.

I shall never forget how I pulled two heavy suitcases across the streets of London one very late evening, my body wishing nothing more than to collapse, my mind however musing that I had hit rock bottom and only could go up from there. It was true.

I am now a week away from moving to a town outside London, and I am certain it shall prove delightful as the apartment is all a student on a budget could ever wish for, making the distance to the university well-worth the long commute.

I have great hopes for 2010, and I hope that it also shall allow me to return to the world of blogging, one short post at a time.

Summer Skies

I have a favourite pair of earrings that I have adored since the very moment I made them mine. They are of the the whitest silver and bejewelled with a green faceted stone that shimmers in every colour of the rainbow when hit by sunlight. Truly, they are an amazing pair of earrings adding the flair of elegance to even the most ordinary of days.

Today I went for a long walk to seek out my very favourite place; a miniature forest of nothing but beeches. Of all the trees in the world I regard beeches as my favourites, and at the peak of spring — when all the flowers are in full bloom — the small forest is a most delightful location to be; the trees towering silently above my head, their branches covered with the faintest of green sheens, the ground hidden by a cover of fallen and withered leaves.

It so happens that I upon returning home realised that my favourite earring had gone missing, and I realised that I must have dropped it while walking across the carpet of last year’s fallen leaves. It would have been impossible for me to notice a small earring falling among a thousand leaves, and so I knew the earring was lost forever, never to be found.

I had never considered the possibility of losing my very favourite piece of jewellery and of course I became very upset when it dawned upon me that my delightful earrings would not gild my days for eternity. They had until this day, but not any farther. Their time had come.

Nostalgically placing the lost earring’s now lonely twin back into my jewellery box this evening I understood that this was the final fate of my silver-green favourites; one lost forever, one remaining to remind me of times that now had passed. But they are pleasant times to remember and I should therefore not mourn my loss but instead think back upon all the delightful times we shared.

And, somewhere out in that beech forest my favourite earring now lies below the withered leaves. Windflowers grow there, breathing life into a carpet deposited by last year’s chilly autumn winds. High above tower the crowns of proud beeches, protecting what is below with their vast expansion.

The are worse final fates for a favourite in this world.

Have you ever lost a favourite or something you hold dear?