POW: Professionally wasting time

I know, I know. Even I am sick of it. I am here, then I go missing for a week, then hey here I am again. For the few people that read my stuff and follow me on twitter they must think I am half assing this, not taking it seriously or something, coming every few days or so even here and gracing everyone with my presence. But that’s not the case though. For the few of you who follow me, they know that my life and the reason of my hair going gray in my late 20s is this damn day job. But alas, 15 or so days are left and then I can take again a day off, which it will make, what? 3 whole months of day to day work, every damn day? Jesus… But sure, you can say that I had even an hour off and why didn’t I create, why I avoided twitter and the whole ordeal?
Not counting that I spent the few hours I had passing out of sheer exhaustion and editing the upcoming book, I just wasn’t in a good place. And for everyone who tried to do something be it writing or trying to find success in any part of life, you know how bad your performance can get if your head and heart ain’t in the right place. You want perfection, or whatever comes close to it. Be that as it may, I still have to say I feel guilty.

Professionally wasting time and half assing life


That would be my official title if anyone asked. A writer? Perhaps. Poet? Sometimes. But an idiot who jumps ahead without a second thought and who is a master in procrastination? Definitely! OK, with all things considered, having my life force sucked by my job and the scary week where everyone around me had Covid except me (get your vaccines don’t screw around) I got to say as far excuses go, I am solid. But, there is always a but, I feel guilty. Not many of you know the book that is coming out “The Lonesome Road” is my second book. First technically as I wrote it about 3 years ago, if you want to be specific, bit that’s semantics. I had written a book last year which I am in the same time proud of and disgusted by. Proud because I wrote every day for like 2-3 hours deep in the night. I worked the same job, not as intense I may add, but yet again every day I retained a certain dose of commitment of which I was proud. Sheer determination took over as I was adamant to finis this. But then again it brings a certain dose of pain, as the story by itself was good, actually great in my humble opinion, but filled with mistakes and putting it myself, dipping the toes in self publishing made me realise this was a big endeavour for me. Yet I made my peace with it, as it is failure that is the necessary part of growth. I took my lessons from it, as it was necessary to make those certain mistakes for me to learn, to grow. After that, I changed my view on life as well. Having a mental breakdown that same year helped to it. But it was a harsh lesson that was necessary, that no matter the mistakes we make in life, no matter how many or how big, with the will to change, it might get better. Now I am still waiting for those better days, but every single good thing that comes my way, no matter how small, I take it in appreciating it in full, knowing how rare of an occurance it is.

“…no matter how many or how big, with the will to change, it might get better.”

Be proud of your steps

Yes, I feel ashamed. Sometimes I am afraid I will go stagnant again, falling a victim to my depression, throwing all the progress I made as a person away and get back to staying in bed all day not feeling well as I make peace with my destiny. You think to fail is the biggest pain of life? Then you never have been laying down pressured by the darkness of your thoughts, wasting your life doing nothing or doing stupid things, watching those around you progressing to better parts of their life while you are being left behind, left only with your own thoughts that taunt you. It can get bad. But I feel a measure of a person is the ability to wish for a change.  No matter how many mistakes we make, if there is a will to change, to be better then the toxic and bad person we are, I think there is still hope. That’s why I feel ashamed now. I became a person that if he doesn’t use every usable second of the short day he has to create and write, to progress towards his goal, I am afraid I am going back. There is this saying. You gaze into the abyss long enough, the abyss gazes back. I have been to that dark place, I know what’s there. And I don’t want to go back. I have been there making mistake after mistake, thinking my life was worthless, so what’s a new mistake or two. I have watched my friends and family progress to better things in life and I wasn’t jealous. Why would I? How can I be when I knew I don’t deserve to be happy, to succeed in life. To all who had been there, you know well you fall so deep you hit the floor and face the question. Was it enough of that kind of life and will you get your shit together or do you give up and continue to fall. Trust me, after you see the bottom of that abyss, you find true fear of what can happen. I believe progress requires mistakes. But it can be hard. To be broken, not knowing how to ask for help, but desperately wanting some. My advice? No matter how scary and hard it looks to get up from that bottom and climb despite being down it for so long, trust me, it’s far more scarier what awaits you down if you stay. So believe you deserve better, that it can be better. And it will.

“No matter how scary and hard it looks to get up from that bottom and climb despite being down it for so long, trust me, it’s far more scarier what awaits you down if you stay. So believe you deserve better, that it can be better. And it will.”

Preaching again

Seems I can’t help it! Damn. I start talking about one thing and immediately it turns into a TED talk. Perhaps it’s the boring person in me, I don’t know what to say as my life is pretty dull. But I like to believe these insights and my experience could provide some comfort and assistance to some of you who are going through this, to let you know it gets better, even if right now things might seem bleak. You stayed in the dark for this long and it didn’t kill you, then trust me you have the courage to walk on into the light. I got to admit it feels good I found a brief moment to sit and write another POW. Process of writing was an idea for me not just to practice writing and open up, be more personal, but to share my experiences and to motivate others to share. I know August had been pretty silent from my end, but here’s hoping that will change in the upcoming weeks. My head is getting there, getting into that good place of strength and I can feel the spark igniting once again. So here’s to you all, to all of you who still seek your spark, your way out of the dark, may you find it, may you stay strong and resilient in your quest for a better tomorrow. To you my friends, wherever you may be, I wish you all the best. Stay strong and moving.

Much love,
Harry.

POW: Life will sort itself out

What is it with the world and it’s undying compulsion to tell us what we are going to be? What are they to gain, those who shatter other peoples hope, dreams and aspirations? You are never going to amount for something,  you are  never going to be anything… Your amount won’t ever be worth something… My personal favourite. There is this person I know, who said, people enjoy other peoples suffering, as it is success that bothers them. So they scheme, gossip and turn on one another just so they can enjoy in other misery. And that is true. But why is it that no matter how hard we try not to give a fuck we always let others get to our hearts? Perhaps it is the universal flaw of humanity, that no matter what we want to be appreciated, respected, that no matter what we care…

Art of absence

I have been away for a while and for that I apologise, to whole six of you who actually enjoy reading my random and weird thoughts. It has been tough lately. You know how I said the few previous times it is hard for me to connect to others, especially on social media, the writers “must have” tool? Now with all going on, not even finding the time to open twitter, I find myself stunned, looking at the empty status, trying to figure out what funny words I can spew out. What am I suppose to say? What do people like me who do not have in a hindsight an interesting life, or a life at all, what do we say? But I digress. And I am well aware that there are more then six of you, thank you for that. It is a one year anniversary of the site. Yeay! Happy birthday Word Den. True, I haven’t committed fully to the site last year, but few months ago all changed. I am trying, learning and failing, but that’s what life is about. It’s a process. Hard. Unforgiving. Process. But hey, at least we can make the most of it since we are in for a ride, unvoluntarily I may add. I know this week is short considering the content promised, but I did had a good reason. First like I said last time now I am working every day for 10 hours (minimum) so it is hard for now to keep my mind focused. But even with a tight schedule I managed to pull the now weekly POW (oh yea!) and at least two poems. But I deserve a break, right? The other reason some of you might had guessed is the resurgence of my depression, but not to worry… I am curing it right now! As this week’s POW is posted I am right now with my mates, meat on the bbq and a free tap of beer running. It helps. And I have a confession to make. Where usually I would be my normal depressing self, it got me thinking about hope and goodness of life.

Life is a bitch?

Life has a tendency to sort itself out. Things do fall into places where they are supposed to be. Just takes time. The key is to survive until they do. Hard, I know. But then again, while I am reminiscing about some better times, when my mates were still here in one place, not scattered around the world where we are now forced to a yearly meet up, I kept on thinking how the stress and nervousness is unnecessary. Sure, it is in human nature to worry. But to what extent? If I worry about being hit by a car so much so, will I even cross the street? Sometimes all it takes is a leap of faith, a moment of self belief, that maybe, just maybe, things will work out for the better. We stress how we will come on to new people, what if we stay alone or what if our hard work was all for nothing? But thinking about the 14th step, we will be too afraid to even make the first one. Spinning the movie in our head to what might happen, we tend to forget what can happen. Makes sense? I hope so, bear in mind I am quite drunk. Like I said yearly meet up so we do have try out bbq night before the main event. My point is, for the entirety of my life I have tried, sometimes hard and often times giving up before even really giving a shot, applying for jobs that were way above me to jobs a monkey could do. That made the heartache bigger when I didn’t get any. My friends moved on, met new people and fell in love, while I stayed behind lingering in my darkness, drifting further away by doing stupid shit. But for the last year or so, I stopped thinking about the 14th step and kept on my focus on the first. And things are moving. Looking better? I dare to say so. Next year I will be a published author. (Stay tuned!) An achievement I am immensely grateful for, one I don’t take for granted, but one I will try to build on. For the first time in my life I feel like I know what I want. For the first time I feel like I am not pushed by anything or anyone to be something I am not. For the first time now, I am making my own damn path, my road of redemption, to be something I always was, but never admitted to myself I can become. A storyteller…

For better or for worse

Eh, it is a long road. Somehow I dropped out of college because I thought I couldn’t learn or was too stupid to make it. But now I am in a profession that teaches you something every day, where to make it you must want it and commit. Knowing something you want to do, something you want to be is only part of the journey. But damn it, it is a big part to play. Hey, who would had thought one POW where things ain’t so dark after all, you can practically smell the hope oozing out of the site now! But all jokes aside, we are the ones who make our journey, the ones who walk it and the ones who reap the benefits and the wrongs of it, along with blood, sweat and sacrifice that we spend on it. So don’t let anyone tell you how to live your life. They might assume, they always will because we are creatures of chaos and jealousy, we humans, but they will never know the struggles you face. It is your life, your responsibility and your future. Your hope.

Raising a pint to all your good health and may your dreams come true fellow warriors,

A reasonably drunk Harry.

POW: The unexpected life

I honestly don’t know how some of you manage to balance things! With day jobs, personal life and what not, I get it there is still time to write and do your thing, but is there a scenario where I don’t lose my sanity? Is it just just me or do you as well when you got at a certain point in writing, start to hate your day job (or hating more in my case) where you just want to get through the day and hurry home to write? They say the best ideas come when you are sitting on a toilet seat (or so I heard) but in my case they come when I am at work, I hurry up to hide from my boss so I can quickly open the notepad app and write a thing before my mind goes completely blank.

How life twists

It is strange to look back to where we were few years back and compare it to now. Sure we all made our fare share of mistakes, nudged a few inches of our path going astray, but man, for better or for worse, did any one of us think we would end up doing or pursuing things we are right now? Even in my busy schedule I managed to take some old trash from my room and while getting some boxes away I found a piece of paper. Must have been tucked away for years, probably written while I was still in high-school and on it, a blurb. Years ago, I remember writing stories on paper, old school by hand and this was one of those fragments of my past. The blurb of course was incomplete and messy, but the story itself not half bad. I must admit, lately I have fallen on some hard times, doubting myself if I can even do this, balancing work which now I have 10 hours of daily without a day off and just in general fighting depression. But seeing what young Harry wrote gave me hope. I sat on the floor, griping that old piece of paper and just laughing, almost even bursting into tears. It gave me joy, understanding, that even before I had dreams, aspirations. That was my ammo to fight back the depression that keeps on asking, questioning my ability of doing this, with the words “Are you even good?” constantly ringing in my ears. What I learned so far is that life has a sense of humor, a sense of irony particularly. I am constantly pressed down by my mistakes and everyone with mental illness will know it’s a battle each day. Even when you win (and you don’t always win) the pain is still there, the burden never goes away. I don’t like to speak about it, yet I made a promise to myself that I will get more personal. This became a therapy of sorts for me. Is it working? Perhaps, but like I said each day is a battle.

Am I alone out there?

Don’t worry won’t speak again about how when we fight our own demons we often tend to think we are alone in this fight, which it doesn’t have to be the case. No… As I was watching that piece of paper I remember fondly about the stories I created in my mind, my vast imagination running free and unshackled. By that time I thought how hard would be to write a book and I did try but never had the proper motivation. I remember when I was 11 I was at my old potato of a PC trying to write each day. Damn, if anyone told me back then how competitive this all is and how writing a book and pouring your soul into it is not even 50% of the whole process, who knows if I would write the first one. I remember how alone I was back then and how alone do I feel now. Perhaps that’s why it gets to me, when I post something here or on twitter and I get no response, perhaps that’s what makes the question of am I really even good louder… But perhaps it’s not just me. Perhaps there are more of you, who fight with the same questions I do as well. Well, I admire you, knowing what toll it takes on a human body, soul and mind, as the heart begins to break, bit by bit. But presented with a choice of that question, what are we to do? To just give up after our heart literary went in our work? No, of course not. We do the only thing we can, the only thing we know how to do. We bite our teeth, pushing forward. Because we know what’s behind, waiting for us. And everything, even the risk of a heartache, is better than that.

The attitude of a loser

To my firends I seem overconfident because I say I will make it, I will be big. The truth is, it’s not my ego speaking but my pain. For years I tried to be more than no one, applying for countless jobs I can find and failing just because I wanted a career, a meaning. Like all of us I strive for meaning. I was told I won’t be anyone, I will die alone somewhere in a ditch. That’s the reason of my confidence. Its not a fake one, no. After I applied for jobs as all of my firends finished uni or had great careers even if I got to the next round of interviews and was close to getting it, it was the pain of telling them over and over again “Oh I didn’t get it…” that killed me. One by one I saw it in their eyes the same words many people spoke to me over the years. You won’t be anyone. You won’t matter. Perhaps it is the fear of those words, that I never won’t forget, that planted the seed for my depression. But perhaps those words, which will always follow me, are what make me say “Always forward!”

Still keeping up with it,

Harry.

POW: The hard part of fitting in

Recently someone told me I take this too seriously,  that I post too much stuff, work too hard on new material. Perhaps they are right. Perhaps in this new and still very uncharted waters I foolishly try to overcompensate the lack of my experience by doing more, always more. I push myself to the extreme, because when in that rare occurrence when I invest myself I always go to the far extreme, writing till early hours on the new book, preparing new materials for the site and getting the lack of sleep and energy for it after I push myself to the breaking point just to be sometimes disappointed by the lack of even response. When did I start to do things for the occasional like? I forgot the very essence of writing, the one rule, THE rule… don’t write for people, write for yourself. But not saying in some kind of manner that I am not enjoying my writing or that I do not agree with my written words. No! I am merely saying is it OK to push yourself to that ledge just because we feel or tend to think we would be more happier if we immediately “make it”? Why is it that we push that burden of stress on our back that we have to be cemented in a new endeavour as soon as we set sail in it? Is it just fear? Or perhaps is it more? Fear of failure? Perhaps… Or our own shame that we won’t be just good enough as we would like. Perhaps I tend to do things bit more extremely just because I feel like if I don’t do all at once, push myself to the max, I won’t be good. But in the process of burning out I feel like losing the one unique strain every writer leaves in his work that makes it special.

The one in the friend group

Ever been that one person in the friend group who just want to talk about writing and books? And when you do they look at your like OK weirdo don’t be boring and they immediately switch the topic? Damn I need some new mates… But all jokes aside I love them, but there are instant moments of hate, especially when they introduce me to new people. Mind you I am an introvert, true and true, but what makes the situation more difficult is when they say something in the line of “Yea, he is writing stuff…” Whoever was introduced to someone as any form of a writer you know the question that comes after. “Nice, so what do you write about?” No one, and I mean no one, in their sane mind is standing there while you narrate your whole WIP. They expect a quick summary of two sentences where you have to jam in the twist, total character motivation and growth, getting them hooked in right in those two minutes. Honestly when put in that situation I feel like I am live querying. If they don’t think I am weird by that point they will when I start blabbering about my work for a hour.

All fantasy based on real life?

One of the things I heard and a thing I am told a lot is that the fantasy I write Is based on real life. Then is it fantasy at all? Sure my mates recognise themselves in some aspects of my work, be it in a character I described (and killed off early) or be it in a plot that is very similar to something that occurred in our life. But let’s be honest, every work, be it even a fragment of it, is based on us, on our life, it is the unique piece of us that we put in our work that makes it unique, that makes it distinctively different from other authors.

I feel like no one is listening

Like I pointed out last week, I am beginning to feel like no one is out there. True, the introvert in me always pulled the brakes on most of things I want to post or reply to people. Ever saw someone’s post, thought of a funny reply, wrote it and just stood there watching the words you typed and thought “Did I really think this would be funny?” And like most of my replies it ends up being deleted. So just so you know there were many funny and witty  responses you were deprived of. But even when I get the courage to post something, ask a thing or trying to be witty, all I get is well… crickets. I swear you can feel the empty space of vacuum that fills the silence when I try to reach out. OK perhaps I am overreacting a bit, but you have to admit it, that sometimes most of us haven’t thought that writing would be about these things. Reaching out to an audience that isn’t mostly there, promoting your work that a lot of people won’t even see. Whoever said that writing a book would be the easiest part really was onto something. It just makes you doubt, about you, about your own ability and I would lie if I said I don’t have moments thinking of giving up. It’s one thing creating your own world and characters and an other facing the real one.

Writing a book is the easiest part of it…

Still out here

I am trying. Like most of you I assume. I know, we all have problems to face, battles to fight and you think your struggle is unique and special, as no one feels like you, but when you look more closely and see that there are million people who feel like you do, it takes away a bit from your own battle as now you know the fight you face is not that special. Bit in that shattering realisation you gain strength, knowledge that you ain’t alone. I am still trying, still fighting the notion of giving up, just wishing my words don’t end up in the emptiness of the void, wishing that at least the only response I get ain’t the echo of my own voice. Still somehow here,

Harry.

POW: Secret talent of doing nothing

They say no one is going to doubt you or criticise you more than… Well you! And boy were they right! The summer heat is here and I am dying but with it I somehow become a master procrastinator. Truly it’s a skill I mastered, I know beside my day job I consider writing not just a passion but a second job as well! But truth be told, leave me in an empty room, take away Netflix, Xbox even the Euros (it’s coming home!) and I would still lay down on the ground, look at the ceiling and be mesmerised by it! I need help…

The art of doing nothing

I need to do stuff! The blog ( which we passed 1k views, thank you for that!), the upcoming book and the one I am currently writing, I want to take seriously. I was half assing things till now, but I promised to myself to finish two tasks till the end of the year. 100 subscribers on the blog and finishing the new book by September. So far I am fairly consistent when it comes to my blog, we crossed the half way mark to that magical 100 number. And the book is progressing just… fine? 20ish pages done, but with the Euros and the heat coming over to distract me, things got really… difficult…  My AC unit just lost its will to live and left this world, so right now I am stuck, just me and this unrelenting heat.

Feeling every single mosquito bite and the occasional warm breath of the wind ( I swear summer is doing it on purpose) I still find myself laying on my bed and looking into the empty void of the ceiling.  Usually I would blame the occasional depressing thought passing by and preventing me to do anything productive, but no! I keep on zoning out, looking at nothing. At least I kept my one talent, professionally doing nothing.

The awkward interaction

With what little free time I have I started to do something I previously despised, spending more time on social media. True, it’s a useful tool when it comes to writing, but I want to make friends and connect with people, especially with other writers, but being an introvert with depression,  you can imagine how well that turns out to be. But hey, if you see me around, tweeting semi-funny stuff, say hi, don’t be a stranger! These days social media is a must have, especially for us writers, as promotion and advertising, the hell it brings, is done mostly online. But I feel like most of us (or just me) are put in the vast and unknown space (sometimes weird plane) of social media, left to our own devices to fight out of the sea of many. But then again you can’t over do it, because people will get tired quickly of you just saying one thing over and over again, even if it’s your book. I don’t know maybe it’s just me, but I feel like it’s a part of writing that feels all but writing, a part that is mandatory yet feels unnatural. If there is any veteran writers who can help me navigate these uncharted waters, do contact.

Hit and miss

One of the reasons I am fairly reluctant on engaging people is the lack of response. Yea I know I ain’t the funniest person out there, definitely not the most interesting, but I do have my moments. I am still new to Twitter and, like all, I am still learning but it happens that from time to time I say something and I get the all known crickets as a response. Ah yes, the awkward silence, feeling the fictional tumbleweed rolling. And got to admit, it kinda hurts, you get the feeling of why do I even try. It might be the mighty Twitter algorithm that is mostly responsible for it, but like with everything in this line of work thay comes to strike you down to the pits of discouragement, we need to pull forward. Be it harsh criticism, doubt in our own work or skills or the lack of response we get when we try to engage with people, this job will test your self belief and it will make you trust in yourself more, even if at times it won’t seem like it.

When all fails, you won’t

Sure procrastination comes easy and it is easier to get lost in doing nothing so we forget to even start. But just remember, it was you who was at the beginning of all. You started this journey. Only you have the means to continue it. Taking a break is fine, even when we are just overwhelmed by the sheer tasks we face, be it promoting, writing new stuff or like me just connecting with people, it is important to catch a breath and remember why you started this in the first place. Sit. Relax. Find a way to vent it all out. I found that writing a once a week segment to get personal to 2,3 people who read it (hi you magnificent humans) does the trick! But remember why you do this and that there is only forward. Don’t dwell on the past, accept it and act in the present for your better future!

Final words of encouragement

I will try to cut it short. The blog just passed 1k views and I am eternally grateful for all of your support! I know I post more or less just poetry which is my medicine against depression and it works. But POW (Process of writing) is this project for me to try and open up, write more personal stuff and try to connect to more people. I thank you all, no matter how few of you are, that share this journey with me! And seeing the site grow, I can only hope to grow alongside it and perhaps to revive a few decent projects that were put on hold. But until then, I will just go pull my fridge near my desk and keep its door open. Don’t judge, I need to get crafty! Till next time, wishing you a great start of the weekend,

Harry.

The Process of Writing: Why do we write?

Sometimes I think it is all a bit too much. With anxiety and depression, I often ask myself have I bit more then I can chew. I became a friend of inconsistency and doubt. But lately,  one exercise helped to ease my mind. Only forward. That’s what I keep telling myself. Whenever a panic attack occurs, whenever anxiety gets the better of me, I just repeat in my mind, “Only forward.”

What it can be and what it should

Why do we always put the burden of what it can be? Throughout our life, every decision even before it’s made, is presented by our mind running all viable possibilities. How often we don’t even make the first step in our journey because we tend to overthink and focus on the 14th step of that same journey? Do we plan for the future too much that we neglect the present, our time to act? Like the stories we write, isn’t it better to focus on our current process, never focusing on the whole structure, caging the narrative, but knowing the basics of it, tucked somewhere in the back of our mind and let the story flow through its natural course? For life, for writing and for pretty much everything, shouldn’t we jump in the river and let the current do its thing, rather then overthinking what could happen and find ourselves left behind on the shore?

The way through is only forward…

Why to write?

This is something I often ask myself. The doubt is always there, but somehow is the self criticism that gets the final nail. After writing “The Lonesome Road” (coming 2022) I found it hard not to “not” write, but to get behind what I wrote. Maybe it sounds crazy, I really don’t know (not overly sane myself so how should I know) but I wrote 5 WIP all to chapter 4 or 5, after I “temporarily” abandoned them. It’s not they are not good, but I found them lacking that “something” that kept me writing the damn 90k+ words for “The Lonesome Road” and to be honest it pisses me off. But I am grateful for it, as all of those attempts were 5 times I learned something new and started a WIP that I am passionate about.

“The Lonesome Road”

Like I said before, I never started writing because I wanted to become a writer. All of this was a project to fight depression that somehow ended with two written books and a blog filled with poems. Strange is how life turned out sometimes… (that’s kinda the letting go for the flow thing) But my first work is special. Not just

it’s my first and like some writer-mom I find the first always special (love all of your books equally, that’s what my mom always said for us kids even if we knew she loves the youngest the most), but yea the first one started as a commemoration of sorts. A book that is fantasy, that depicts a tale of a man who finds himself in a barren wasteland, alone, in a world that is ridden of all life, but yet looks so familiar. He seeks the remnants of his kind, faced with solitude and the heavy questions is he the really the last human left alive… But this man does not remember anything. Not his name, not how he got here or how the world ended. So this journey really is about finding himself, finding answers to hard questions of mortality and life most of us don’t dare to even ask. But one night, while taking shelter from the in an abandoned house, the last man on Earth gets a knock on the door. But like I said, it’s not just a fantasy book with good storytelling, unpredictable twist and a bleak yet beautiful world filled with memories and secrets. It’s a tale of depression, meaning of life and love, quest of finding ones humanity and inner strength that can make you stand on your own two feet when the world abandoned you. I wrote it for the sole intent that whoever felt or is feeling like me, broken, misunderstood and alone sees there are still us who fight the hard battles within ourselves, that even though these wars are hard, they are not always lost. That for the thousands of those who don’t understand, who tell you to just be damn happy, stop being sad, it will pass and all that crap, there is at least one of us who is going through the same thing you are. And trust me friend, one person who understands what you are going through, is worth a lot more then a thousand fools who don’t.

Even alone, we stand together…

The inevitable process of writing

I am making a habit of sharing the advices I got and passing them on here, so why disappoint this week? For us as writers to grow we should do two thing: Read, keep on reading, because that’s how ideas get born, by fuelling the creative furnace and to learn how to write in the first place. And to learn how to write I want to share what one of my fellow writers said to me.


“Just write. Each day. Each week. Each month. It doesn’t matter how often or how much. But just start. Don’t be afraid to suck at the beginning. We all had a beginning and sucked. But to get further and progress, don’t be afraid to start what can be a magnificent journey!”

My friend J

Yea, even though it pains me to admit, because of his ego, he is right. We all have a beginning. We shouldn’t  burden ourselves with things that can be or what will become. If we don’t focus on the moment, we might just lose it. Till next week,

Harry.

Process of writing PT2: The constant burden of depression

I feel grateful, firstly for the opportunity to be in this position to pursue writing passionately. Secondly seeing the first part of this series being greeted so warmly, can’t stress enough how good it made me feel. So decided to make this a weekly thing, a series not just about writing but about battling depression and anxiety.

What they don’t tell you

You might heard the expression “You never defeat your demons, you just learn to live with them.” But they don’t tell you, it never goes away. That feeling of guilt, that anxiety of the constant pressure from the smallest of things that presses your heart and contracts your mind, making the breathing inconsistent, putting you down so much you just find yourself on the bedroom floor crying, unable to find the reason to get up. The harsh truth here is, it never gets better. One day you will get up, go by your day, make coffee, go to work and perhaps you will just find yourself sitting down and realising you haven’t thought about the crap that puts you away in that tiny box of thoughts. But some days… It will come creeping behind the curtains of a sunny day, deceiving the perception of potential happiness. So the harsh truth no one dares to tell you? It never gets better, but you do…

Pity instead of understanding

You heard the stories. Some of you knew the tales from first hand, be it personal experience or losing a loved one. It’s difficult to open up, even to someone we love, trust or know for a long time. I did the same mistake, opening myself to disappointment. You expect not a shoulder to cry on, but someone to have your back, someone to listen, someone to understand. How many of you, like me, got the whole known response of pity, heard the good ol’ “depression ain’t real, just don’t feel sad all the time!” The world and the people in it can often be disappointing. What you have to understand is… There are us who been through what you might be feeling now, you ain’t alone, don’t be afraid to reach out… Because we do understand…

You can’t please everyone

I talked about the imposter syndrome, how it always keep coming, making you doubt every written line and it’s quality. But haven’t touched on one thing. When you start this journey, becoming a writer, you post your work (be it a book, a blog or a tweet) for everyone to see. You expose yourself to everyone and their feedback. Sure, you are well aware that the negative words and connotations are inevitable. But you never are really prepared for its impact it can have on the already broken mind. I spoke before about my good friend and one of the first things he taught me is this. You can’t please everyone. If hundred people read your work, be ready that at least tenth of that won’t like it. The most important thing is this. Whatever you write, write for yourself, not for others. If you are proud of what you wrote, people will rally behind it, they will see the soul and heart behind the work you left. And feedback? As authors we need it to grow, take it to heart, correct your mistakes and grow. But distinct real feedback from malicious words of ill intent.

The community

If you are just starting or even if you are as me for quite some time in it, rally behind this amazing community of writers. I got to admit I was sceptical, afraid and somewhat hesitant of reaching out to my fellow writers. As a depressed introvert I still find it hard to reach out and talk to people. But believe me, they will not disappoint. These people are the most amazing and supportive you will find. You will find friends and allys in your journey. And they know well what you are going through. Same as with the struggles of depression and life, the struggles of the writing path you don’t need to walk alone. There are always people willing to help.

A note of gratitude

I enjoy this, perhaps I am using it just to vent out, say the words I couldn’t usually say out loud, but I want to believe it’s more then that. A manifesto, a note to all that might feel same as me, that they ain’t alone and perhaps they can find solidarity in these written words. I want to thank you for taking your time to read it, the support you provide and the amazing work you do. I found joy in poetry that I wrote often here, joy that battles hard with the heavy thoughts that come knocking. It’s a daily struggle, but realise this. If you have the strength to survive those thoughts on a daily basis, you have the strength to fight back. All of you have the immense strength inside you and never forget that.

Process of writing

As I am entering my third year as a “writer” I still keep on using that term cautiously. I am well aware this is a career where you are constantly learning and improving, as they say, it’s a never ending process of “enhancing”, as you always find new ways to well… improve.

Getting out of the eventual slum and the best advice I got

I wanted to quit, early on as well. To be honest, I started writing my first book almost three years ago, but not with the intention of becoming a writer, but rather to fight the ongoing depression and dark thoughts that loomed over me. As the excitement of creating a narrative and a whole new world came to be, slowly I started believing in something else. A different cause. Perhaps, this story could be not just for me, but for all people who felt like I did, broken and lost, shunned from the world. Took me a good six months to complete my work and as I finished I put the famous words “The end” with pride. But now a different feeling arose. A feeling of shame, inadequacy, as I thought who would even want to read it? If you wrote anything, then you are familiar with the imposter syndrome. I knew it too well, writing few pages, finishing a chapter, just to stand there staring at the screen thinking how crazy I am to even attempt to get my hopes up, this ain’t even good. But, a fellow writer, with far more experience then me, reached out. And gave me an advice that is still embedded deep in my mind to this day.

“Try. There are so many books published, more then half of them are not even that good. So what’s stopping you to pull the trigger? Even if no one likes it or even reads it, this thing we do is a constant process of trying. First one isn’t always perfect, but will improve you for the second one. Then the third will be even better and by the time you get to the forth, you will see how much you grew. Give yourself a chance…”

My awesome friend

The reason of it

Simple words, but words I needed to hear, non the less. Because even when I doubted the most, I just repeated those words in my head and continued. I wanted to give up so many times and now, almost three years later, that book I wrote is getting published. “The Lonesome Road”, as it’s called, I never started with the intention of pursuing writing. I fought with depression and was in a hole I dug myself. When you dig a deep hole, finding yourself in the pitch black bottom, you only really see two options. Either you stay and dig more and lose your sanity or you fight back. “The Lonesome Road” will always be, not just a fantasy novel with good (in my biased opinion) narrative with all sorts of twist and turns, but an ode to everyone who is fighting with the same dark thoughts, a manifesto saying that even though you might be misunderstood and easly judged by others, you are not alone. And you do not have to dig yourself out of that hole alone.

Why I even wrote this?

Simply as a sort of a thank you to all who drop by here. I still battle with these thoughts, as no one tells you, it’s a process. Some days are better, some are worse. But lately I found comfort in poetry, venting out and writing more, which you guys seem to like as well, so thank you for that. But perhaps the real reason I am right now writing this is the thing I kept on saying. I never got into this for the sake of writing. At some point in your journey you realise we all need a cause, as most of our characters we need a narrative. And I found mine and will continue to write it. To help and do my best to all who felt and are feeling like I do. There is something that I wrote a while back.

We are many who succumb bellow the pressure of dark thoughts and taunting of despair, there are many who walk side by side with sorrow from dawn to dusk… but we do not walk alone… for it is not the darkness of our being that enwraps us, but the night of the world…

And know below the midnight sky you do not stand alone…”

You do not stand alone below the midnight sky, we all stand shoulder to shoulder. If we carried that burden so far, sure as hell we can fight against it. There needs to be a certain strength to carry it. We have the strength to fight it.

In conclusion?

Perhaps few will find this, read it or even like it. Certainly is different from what I do here usually.  But it’s personal and felt like it needed to be said. To all my fellow writers who fight with doubt, without it we wouldn’t improve. But as a good friend said to me… “Give yourself a chance, what you got to lose?”

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑