The man at the library window


by Ahmed

I don’t really know what it means to blog anymore. It’s either the lack of words, or I have become too self-conscious these days to share anything.

There was a time where writing fiction was only steered by emotions that needed to be expressed or released. But as you grow older, you learn to share the wheel appropriately with your brain as well. This is when you figure that your brain is your biggest judge. I suppose it’s important to be analytical.

When I was a teenage writer, I didn’t feel that the real-life pattern contributed to a great story. You have to process factual and imaginative truth, but in the end, it doesn’t matter which one is evident in the story. A semi-autobiography means nothing to your reader; however, the story does. Littering the mind with too much meaningless reality has a draining effect on both the heart and the brain. We all know it. Unfortunately, you grow accustomed to the white noise of reality that you often forget about your passions. Responsibilities get in the way. Everyone, including loved ones, has expectations from you all the time, while all you want to do is turn on your favourite music and remind yourself why you’re really here. There are many reasons, such as exorcise childhood demons, get over heartbreak, or, more importantly – create something big that you can share. I am glad I started on the latter back in 2006 because I always need time to write. I often need three hours for one single paragraph. Damon Albarn needs three hours to write the next line of a song, so I guess I don’t feel so bad after all. I’m not much of a perfectionist, but as far as my novel is concerned, I am, mainly because my English is not native. I may speak about three to four languages, but I don’t master all of them perfectly. I am not a bright introvert, either. The only time I am is when I read a lot, but I haven’t been doing it for a long time.

The novel may be the biggest thing I will create. Having it edited has nothing to do with perfectionism. I’m doing this for the reader – the universal reader. And I’m doing it to be less selfish, to remind my bias self to view things from different angles and not just mine. Unfortunately, I am not a super writer, not like the man sitting by the library window. Does he even exist? I don’t remember.

What I do know is that fiction exists. It’s an idea, which emerges from the brain and is sparked by the heart. Eventually, little drops of ink will crash on a white sheet of recycled paper. This is when you know for sure that a man is sitting by the library window. He is writing without any distractions. He can’t even afford a break to look out of the window. But he is there and has always been there.

In a story, you try to find solutions for dilemmas. You have a girl who is scared of water and a boy who is scared of flying. How are they supposed to co-exist?

You won’t always find a solution that will please everyone because that piece of fiction takes its own course as if it’s telling you the story as you write it. I don’t want to write anything about which I know the ending. As you write and read, you are the author and the reader as one. Not knowing the end is what keeps me going, like it keeps the reader going. When my brain and heart are in sync, I write excessively like the man at the library window. At least that is when I’m fully aware of my existence.

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