Blogging my way back in

Blogging has never been more fun. Why? Because I am writing from a place where there was no reliable internet available till a week back. My blog was on the verge of becoming defunct when suddenly the wordpress app started working here. I am writing these few lines to express my delight as well as to check whether the connection will actually work.

More words to follow soon…

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The Common Tongue of the World

While reading the immensely talented and committed fellow bloggers the other day, I realized that they all belong to so many different parts of this huge world. Asia, Americas, Europe, Middle East, Africa, Australia – name the continent and you will see someone piecing together his thoughts in words and posting for us to read. This is wonderful. The world has been so evolved that languages change the moment you cross some miles, yet it has been brought together on the same platform by one single common tongue. You might hate it or love it but English has brought us all together. I wouldn’t have been able to appreciate the amazing ideas that you all have, had it not been for this language. While we all have great respect for our different mother tongues, we can’t deny the importance this one language has in the connected world of today.

It is unbelievable that so many like-minded people exist in the far away states of the remotest countries. It would have been an impossibility to even know that let alone connecting. While English was received by us Indians in heritage from the British, many people learn it especially to be able to make their point and express themselves to a wider audience. We, here, aren’t even considered educated without this knowledge. It would leave us jobless and humiliated if we can’t make other people understand in English. Strange and cruel, I used to think. We have our own language here. Why can’t we just handle affairs internally without artificially leaning so heavily on a foreign language? Whatever sore feelings I had, evaporated the day I started reading books. The treasure that these books brought along from all the corners of the earth overwhelmed me. I thank God that I know this language. I know how to understand what the greatest people who walked the earth have to say about the most perplexing situations we face everyday.

Though we have no dearth of writers in our own mother tongue, the awareness of this common tongue takes us beyond borders, mountains, nationalities, and communities. That introduces us to new ideas, strange customs, interesting thoughts, creative art work, and much more. And the fact that so many people around the world pen down their work in English has contributed to its richness. I know there is nothing like being a native speaker, but I believe more than that the dynamism and consistent improvement in this language has been a doing of people living beyond. People who carried it to the farthest corners, even if for the purpose of colonization, spread it for all of us to speak and understand one another.

This common platform provides us the opportunity to connect, to earn our livelihoods, to learn, to express, to entertain ourselves, to roam around the world, and in the end to ink it all down to share with others. The fact that I have been able to share my thoughts with you all using this language reinforces my belief in its usefulness and the freedom it offers to the individuals like me.

Drunk on my love for writing. Are you too?

I had a first after many days today. I had a bottle of beer with my father. I mean not exactly with my father truly; I kind of snatched one away from his kitty, and went into my own room on a date with solitude. I had these two episodes of Game of Thrones season 6 downloaded, and begging to be watched, but something was missing. And bang, my father enters my room asking for something to eat with beer. Up till now, he wasn’t even completely sure that I allow myself having alcohol; “occasionally”, I promised him with the most innocent look I could bring my features to conjure. It has taken me years of hard work to make my parents believe that I still am the good boy they raised. Now a couple of bottles of beer may sound routine to some; for me, having it under the same roof as my father’s was nothing short of magic. Chilled beer in this hot weather plus my favourite show. I couldn’t have asked for more.

A very well known writer once said, write drunk, edit sober. I know some of you reading machines have already got the name, but I can’t remember, I am drunk! I will make sure that I forget to edit afterwards. I will lose my flow. Jokes apart. Writing in itself is more immersing than alcohol can ever be (not for all though, you know who I am addressing). Anything that you love is, for that matter. A piece of writing is nothing less than a peek into the soul of the writer. You can’t write about something you don’t believe in. You can always write against something you don’t believe in though.

When I got initiated into the world of writing I so strongly believed that writing should be sacred. I have read too much to believe that now. Writing instead should be honest. You might touch upon some subjects considered to be taboo, but it still will be honest. You are one unique human being, absolutely unmatched in anything. Why should you be forced to see something as ‘some particular thing’? Everyone has his own perspective. That’s what makes us all interesting. Stop brooding about the good things others have. Count your own. It is simple – if it pleases you, it’s good. Believe me. Until of course, it involves hurting others. Everything has boundaries. Don’t be literally drunk! You don’t have to be a hero, but don’t be a villain either.

In the lives of working professionals, a Saturday is perhaps the most loved day. To start with, the word itself has a pleasant ring to it. The fact that it is followed by something as awaited as Sunday, pulls it ahead of all other days in the race – we all agree that something that has a Monday at the end of its tail can’t be all that good. So make the most of it, not by drowning yourself under the weight of alcohol, but by engaging in a real activity, something constructive. Something creative.

Understand that you can’t put a price on something that generates happiness within you. It is a rare commodity. People may come harsh upon you and tell you that such an activity is forbidden. But then, forbidden is pleasurable as well as achievable. Don’t go overboard though. Excess of everything has repercussions we can’t digest. That’s why they are called bad.

Talking about freedom of writing, I come across so many ingenious writers everyday on internet, that I wonder why aren’t they published yet? But then getting published is not everyone’s aim. I read bloggers that are just incredibly talented and thorough. They are so prepared. They are meticulous and impeccable. I bow in front of them. I learn from them. Even though they do the honours of liking what I write, I know where they stand. And I have a lot to learn from them. It is only their humility that they appreciate others. That is what is amazing in the blogging world. We encourage one another. We appreciate novelty of thoughts, and honesty of expression.

Each one of you is my inspiration. People from all walks of life. Committed to writing. Sharing their lives, and ready to read that of others. Words are music to us writers. Keep creating symphonies. We are here to hear you. Be loud and original enough to reach our ears though, as there is so much of noise around. Once you separate yourself, we will catch you and listen to you. However, don’t just be loud for the sake of it. Put your feelings into your words, and rest assured we will hear, as we are all trying to be heard.

What to choose, what not to?

I was reading a book this morning, completely lost in the words when a back-stretch seemed necessary. With that I lost the focus for a split second, and the problems that I had been avoiding thinking about stormed back into my head. These are the real life problems, the ones we all have to face and deal with even if we don’t want to. And each one of them demands resolving. Think about them logically, choose the best solution as you can, and they will at least stop throbbing your head. Try avoiding them, and they will make sure to seep in at the slightest crack of opportunity.

It is true that life is all about making choices. I belong to a part of the world where parents take care of their children for as long as it is possible. In fact, unless the children leave them, they are more than happy to spend their whole lives with them. Though the world even here is moving towards nuclear families, the first choice is to stay together. And to the surprise of many, I still live with mine. My father is still the main guy at home. For these reasons, choosing for my own self came pretty late as per the standards of the developed world. And now when I have to do it on my own, I realise how difficult this is. My father has made some very big decisions in his life, and I can’t help but respect him, even more now that I understand.

Dealing with people everyday and saying the right things at the right time is the most difficult part of my job, as I feel. For some it is a cakewalk though. Now that may send out the message that I am a reserved person. Actually I am not. It is just the pretentiousness and formal engagements that I dislike. Give me freedom to talk, and I can compete with the people with three bottles of beer down their throats. But now I have finally chosen to be myself after all, and I talk the way I do, and that seems to be working as well.

People from management often tell me to be a little more strict with the team, a little less open with them, and a lot less considerate. I might not win favours with my supervisor, but my team likes me. And that makes my day at work a little less of an ordeal. I like a frequent laugh, and that keeps me fresh.

Having said that I have almost decided not to continue my job. Putting data into excel sheets, and making sense of the numbers don’t excite me any more. This is a tough decision. Another choice I have to make. And somewhere deep inside I am very very afraid. I wish my father could make that choice for me and tell me what I should do. But his choice is so predictable – the job. So I can’t entrust him with this responsibility. Too bad, life would have been so easy. But the universal truth is that only I know what I like or don’t – no one else does.

But this is a problem, and it has to be resolved quickly. I know what I want but the logic, the bloody logic jumps in the way uninvited, too often for my liking. Thank God I have this blog to transfer my thoughts to.

Anonymity Gives You Freedom

Does anonymity give you more freedom in expressing your true thoughts? The thoughts you actually hear tapping the insides of your scull. I think yes. For long I have been wanting to write about a few subjects that stir me inside, but since they are either too bold or too personal to reveal, I don’t go ahead. Which means I have consciously put a filter right at the place where creativity originates. In the end, it only leaves out the ideas that are safe to share, and non-controversial. But that is not how imagination prospers. Things offend others all the time, so if there is something you truly believe in, don’t worry, give it words. If you have trouble doing that, going anonymous will help immensely.

I have seen people judging others after reading a piece of their writing. Now that happens a lot if  your readers are the people you know in real life, and you write a lot about your personal life. Unless you put a lot of checks in place, you run the risk of divulging something that you ought not to. And I am especially referring to the people new in the world of blogging. This breed of writers is always cautious of their image, and thus produces a work less than their true potential promises because of so many fear-filters.

I am not promoting anonymity if you can write without being troubled by what others would think of you. If you can do that the debate is over. People not afraid of anything while bringing forth the ideas they think are the best, irrespective of their social worth, are doing justice to the art of writing. But if you have to hide some and show some to be able to come up with something – best go anonymous and show it all. And original ideas take courage to be brought out in the open. They are often first met with resistance and loathing. So be courageous and write your heart out. Choose any of the ways but don’t hold anything inside. If it makes a good work of writing, it will be liked, howsoever bold it might be.

Taking The First Step – Starting A Blog

Starting, and consistently writing a blog might come to some people as easy as brushing their teeth every morning, or for that matter, skipping it every night. Many of these creative people start early, in college; and some enlightened beings even manage to find their way onto blogging streets while still in their school uniforms. However, the people who amaze me the most are the ones, who despite spending most of their waking hours at work, still somehow shake the negativities and exertion off their heads, and lift their spirits to be willing enough to write. For these people, it is a passion, an everyday obsession. Writing their hearts out or helping others with useful information is what they look forward to every morning, or every night, as the case may be.

For many of us, however, creating a blog always remains a dream that despite being so achievable stays distant and mostly unrealized. I believe that too easy access to the blog world, sometimes, ironically enough, makes people delay things. After all, it can always be done the next day? To add to it, the prerequisite of being familiar with basic technology shoos away many others from the pleasures of owning a space on internet.

I have met so many people, who want to write, and they probably do it too, privately, but to create something that looks useful, logical, and well thought out not just to you, requires a lot of labor. Not everyone is prepared to do that. Some decide against the idea due to lack of a concrete structure in mind, natural inhibitions, and lack of confidence in their writing. Also, since it is widely perceived as something more suited to a tech-savvy person, the paper-and-pen writers conveniently stay away from it.

However, once you start, writing a blog has visible advantages. You will realize it when you decide to post something – finding a topic, thinking it through, doing the research work, writing it down, eliminating the possible mistakes, editing the draft, all this is serious business. It takes time and sincere efforts. It makes you think hard, and in the process, you end up learning a lot.

I have gone ahead, and finally taken this most important step, so should you, keeping aside all the concerns. Internet is full of people working day and night to help novices like us to set things up. All the very best!