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Why I write the way I do
by Abigail George
2016-03-06 11:04:19
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In futurity I want to find new realities in the notes from the universe. I think that is why I fluctuate from putting pen to paper short writings (for example, haiku, short stories, poetry) are what I write about mostly. People assume that writers and journalists must have the 'gift of the gab'. Some do. Others don't.

I want to mock conventional ways knowing that they are not the most convenient truths. Knowing that they came there through indoctrination. Through the church of my childhood, through faith, the discovery of something else, the journey of finding the I Am. Finding the experience formulaic. We tell ourselves that this is the marathon hope of reality. Reality for the most part can injure/wound terrifically. Terribly. Injudiciously. It says welcome to the party with open arms but it can also wound. So far and no further. When it comes to the craft of writing your attitude will always govern the characters, the protagonist, and the antagonist.

writer01_400This is our country. A writer's country. My country. Your country (if you are a writer). The secret to knowing the craft of writing is a simple one. That the knowledge of intuition is inseparable (or rather should always be) from imagination. That is the real magic. Creating the lyrical. Showing off miracles when they weren't there before.
Finding your inherent soul in music, and even the half-baked ideas that you come up with in the early hours of the morning.

The inflow/influx of the self imposed exile living outside of Africa is steadily on the increase. Poverty, civil unrest, frustrated people, well they interest me in as far as I write about that. Does that inspire me to write? To show off my skills. Of course it does. Now more than ever. I doubt if it will ever inhibit me. Drown out me out by a hair's-breadth the landscape of my youth, my childhood, the church of my childhood.

I speak about spirituality and church because for me in my writing church and faith played a major role in the development of my formative years.

Those self imposed exiles are escaping. Escaping from the only home that they have ever known but some do return. Homesick for Azania.
Homesick for the attitudes of their people.

A writer has to articulate what spirituality is, how profound it is. A writer has to embrace the abstract, the figurative autodidact ism and literal metaphor.

A writer is not one who when it comes to the truth of matters of the heart prevaricates about them. They have a mission (I have a mission).
They have no pretense of mapping out cleverness. Marring the last-ditch attempts of the clarity of their thought (thought is powerful, thought is an inheritance) and vision. Writers never read almost for pleasure or for a lark. There is a extraordinary lassitude that writers experience for all of their lives that they experience innermost. Are they never enough, (or) what I have written is 'it'

The question of the ego, the identity, and the identity crisis is always inimical. It never goes away completely. It is like the analogy of the egg. What comes first? The chicken or the egg. What comes first the ego or the identity? The savant or the genius. The writer, poet as artist or the artist, painter as artist. In the end I know it is fustian. I know.

I have discovered that when you are an inexperienced writer you need a someone who will guide you. A listener. Someone who will give you advice. Who will be kind and critical at the same time. A person who you can forgive.

To not to trust what you write about is one interpretation of belief.
Getting there is also much about you having a philosophy on how, and why you write about the things that you do. Pay attention to what came before and most especially after in your writing environment. I think that you can call a triumph and without any denial something profound, and a breakthrough.

I have written about the quiet death of Lonmin, the bridge over troubled water in South Africa, Rilke's advice to young poets, the status quo of xenophobia, the brave new world of living in post-apartheid South Africa, the culture behind, and of African cinema. I hope to keep on writing on the marginalized and disenfranchised of Africa using this platform. The self imposed exile that found the pastures of the grass is always greener on the other side of the world. This is why I write.

I have read many books. Perhaps not as many as educationalists and academics or scholars even. Some I enjoyed reading. Some I read for pleasure. Honestly, some were very painful to read. Some I found difficult to explain. It was a long time before I realized the difference between the writing style and technique of different writers. By then I had been writing for a few years already.

With some writers you can read their progress as known/unknown, see it as unimaginative or imaginative. You can see the horizontal, the vertical perspective of their education, or you read their process like a magazine that won't go out of style.

Writers, good writers can speak to their readers in a genuine, psychological, sensitive, and authentic way. What does that vital, ethereal energy mean?

Writers survive inside their climate. They do not forget the unequivocal. They put to memory editorial paradigm shifts. Other writers writing. The dry, the good and the bad.

There is an sacrosanct agreement among emerging and published writers.
I was here before you. You have to put in the work before the breakthrough. That goes without saying.

What makes me disconsolate as a writer is the creature discomforts that come with having a traditional attack of the ego, mad love of crises. At the end of the day you will master contrition. You will fight for it with grace and humility though. It will take you being contumacious on your end. There is a consensus out there that in order for you to be good and to become great or a greater than kind of writer is that it is going to take more than opinion, life skills, and life experience.

I don't know if every writer wants to be remembered for what they write. Be immortalized in some way. Be brought to life in a museum life kind of way. Leave behind a serious legacy. That was not my intention when I first started to write seriously. You want to make a go of it. That is all I remember. I just wanted to make a go of it.


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Emanuel Paparella2016-03-06 16:31:29
I have been writing for most of my life, since I was 7. I have often asked myself if a writer is born a writer because of his/her temperament, or a writer becomes one by hard work and constant practice. Not an easy question to answer.

I’ve also asked myself if there are wrong reasons why people write, and, vice-versa, if there are right reasons; assuming all along that one needs a reason to write.

On the wrong reasons column I would tend to include the following: you want to be heard; you want to be famous, make a name for yourself and leave a legacy; you want to impress people, at least some of them with your insights and intelligence; you want to get rich out of it. These may be bad reasons because sometimes, nobody will listen, you may feel like a voice crying in the desert and you may need more for motivation than people showing up to your story; because acquiring a reputation takes talent, hard persistent work and practice and, at least at the outset, you will not be famous and will not have any awards and rewards. Critique of one’s work more often than not is devastating on those with poor motivation and an eye on just success and rewards; it is hard to face a blank page when people do not listen or approve, not to speak of the fact that for most professional writers, those who have not inherited a large fortune, it is not easy to make a living by just writing.

On the right reasons column I would tend to include the following for considering writing well worth your time and effort: you have something important to say; you want to empathize with others, make them feel understood and not alone; you want to make a difference with your words, especially in the sphere of social justice; you want to teach the world something it would not otherwise know and appreciate; you wish to go on an authentic (i.e., not narcissistic or egotistical) journey of self-discovery; because you feel called and almost compelled to do it, and cannot stop doing it, which I suppose is the reason for doing anything. That may well explain the bi-polarity of many artists, including many writers. The need to create, independent of reasons and motivations, makes for genius and the greatest of those genial ideas is that creation is more about giving and less about getting. That is to say one needs to concentrate less on oneself and more on others; less on bottom line and more on genuine impact. One may seriously consider making the reader the hero making her/her him understood as never before, the way a Dante attracts the reader from the very first verse of the Divine Comedy with his “In the middle of the journey of our lives...” I would suggest that if all of the above is seriously reflected upon, one may well come to the conclusion that one is a writer, after all.

Leah Sellers2016-03-06 23:54:15
You have such a Bravely, Beautiful Gift and Soul, Ms. Abigail !

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