I just received my first letter of rejection from the ministry of arts and culture today… but the most important here is to have participated, isn’t it? Here’s the Google Doc link to read the essay I submitted: A period of intense reflection
“Garner your strength, writer, stifle the ache, for your words need to flutter”
I know that the world is shaking right now, where most of us are sad, angry, aching, mourning; and that amidst this strange and wretched time, everything appears grim, morose, and without hope – but should our own heart be alike the gloomy ambiance that’s surrounding us? That’s the question that I’ve been trying to work on since my plans changed completely during that lockdown period… since the pandemic took over our world.
And since then, I am trying to work my way through this new shift in reality, trying to adjust the sail of my ship on that new ocean vibe, reorganizing everything in my life; trying at all cost to stick with a difficult schedule, as to find time to write. Since then – well, after I came out of a whirlwind of incomprehensible deception, demotivation, and gloomy emotions – I have shaken myself up, purged my poisonous thoughts, kicked my blues away, shifted my intent, modified my plans; and after many hours of self-introspection, I have finally been able to identify the root cause of this uncontrollable deception, which clearly made no sense at all. I then knew why earth had shaken underneath my feet, causing tidal waves in my heart.
I didn’t come this far to only come this far
It was such a strange moment – that point in time when fear, doubts, what’s inconceivable, and the strangeness of my uncertainties, merged, giving birth to my distress. It was a situation forced on me, at least that’s how I felt… and I just couldn’t let those negative emotions poison my heart anymore; I couldn’t let distress overwhelm my senses and stop me from thinking; I couldn’t let distress freeze my movements – for I didn’t come this far to only come this far.
The future is not written yet, tables might turn at any point in time, and tomorrow, everything is possible, the better as the worst. Then I decided that I shall think of that tomorrow with pessimism, for I want the better tomorrows, the most exciting of all tomorrows, I want to be that glint amidst the chaos. Thus, I decided to not lower down my expectations concerning my writing ambition – that of selling my own books, books that I like, crafted things with imprints of my own sentences, and of course, to feed this blog with my thoughts and wordcrafts. I decided to continue circling my thoughts around creativity, just because I feel happy when I use writing as my main medium of expression, just because I don’t force myself to write stories nor poems, or even force myself to think about what to blog next. On the contrary, I miss creating more, I miss imagining the next story I’ll write or photos I’ll take for my web pages, or even to sit down, as to craft more poems.
In the blog post harpooning the next day, I wrote about how I overcame my doubts and my fears and of all the dramatic situation occurring … but I didn’t expressed myself on what triggered that profound and uncontrollable distress that made no sense … which I happened to understand only after I went through a series of self-introspection. Found, I’ve missed the opportunity to market Darcocyte and this blog during that period where everyone was locked up at home, with only the internet as means to butterfly and socialize. Found that my doubts and thoughts about the errors I’ve committed were stopping me from thinking clearly about what to do next. Found that I was panicking over the fact that I was making the same mistakes over and over again, with intrusive thoughts and constant feelings that I ignored my intuition once more …
"Writer, garner your strength
Don't lower your expectations
For your words need to fly
Away, into the world."
But wait! You know what? In the end I’ve understood that my overwhelming negative feelings were not even about my trials and errors concerning the business of writing … It was more about me, something more profound, something more sensitive. An opened scar. The feeling that I had lost my wings, again. How much of intense emotions I felt during such a little period of time is unbelievable. Everything shifted, mingled, and then, raptured. All that I can say here, is that it was intense, very intense indeed.
Now I am back on track, after I’ve shaken myself out of the feelings of delusion and dilemmas. I’ve gained again my sense of logic, which as you all know is necessary to live in this reality. And after I’ve spotted my errors and identified the steps that I might have skipped, or even the bridges that I might have burned, I came to accept the fact that I was bound to fail, simply because I was not well prepared – in terms of payment gateway, money, registration of intellectual property, bad devices, those wrong technical setup, my paranoid thoughts about pre-plagiarisation of my writings, not having learned in depth about the technical and marketing part of selling books online… and it goes on and on and on – all of these issues that I haven’t properly worked on, when knowingly I had emitted the intent of pursuing the journey of the independent author … but dammit it’s hard. You write the book for four years while doing intense and risky researches, exposing yourself to whatsoever they beam at you, wondering if ever the things I’ve searched for hasn’t been combed through by intelligent services or the surveillance system, yep 🤔😝😅😂🤣. Thus there were lacunas. Thus the pathway didn’t align, it didn’t flow, it didn’t set, for there were too many missing ingredients.
I am trying another route
And of course, knowing what I know now, my expectations and dreams remain intact, though I have to now take a detour. I am trying another route. It will take the time and effort needed to concretize my expectations, to concretize my dreams. I am still learning, while the fire of determination and passion burns within me. I don’t think that one remains eternally an amateur in a chosen domain, and I do think that what I am learning now will surely help me in one way or another in the future.
Also also, one of my dreams came true! Tadaaa😅 I work from home now! Tadaaa … I assist my MIL! Tadaaa … not at all on my list of expectations, but strangely, this new priority forms part in the alignment of my journey as a creative writer. Like what! My path is starting to align … be patient, I say to my heart … a little bit more of patience, I say to my heart.
I’ve been doing lots of thinking since this ill-wind blew its mortal breath upon the world. This situation, or these sequences of situations look like one of these fictional stories I watch on television, read in books, or even, same as those stories I write or daydream about . . . Sad days which surely have already inspired the writer in us.
Since lockdown, my life and my everyday habits changed suddenly, and overnight, I became the personal caregiver of my mother-in-law. I had to revise all of my priorities, and re-organise my everyday life – where I am still trying to reconcile writing my next book, blogging, parenting, my house-chores, reading, caregiving, and me-go-time on my everyday planning schedule. I had to adjust my time and even myself to this amor fati (love of one’s fate), and rethink about the basis of my own foundation. Slowly but surely, I am adapting myself to this new reality; adopting the change that came about; harpooning the next day.
I thought that I would be taken aback, or even feel dreadfully sorry about my recent decisions, while my life would be dreary . . . but it is not the case, fortunately. It is as if, my heart learned acceptance. I’ve let one of the birds that was caged within my heart flee.
Writing always haunts me, and my want to blog, write poems and fiction passionate me more than ever before. I’ve even submitted two pieces of mine during those two last months – a fiction piece, and a non-fictional one. Thus, my writing ambition has not weaken the least, on the contrary it has widened, and even perhaps, matured.
Right in the beginning of lockdown, doubts and darkness started to appropriate my mind – pessimistic feelings about my writing aspiration took its toll on me – I felt like a fraud, useless, stoopid, delusional. Lies lead to deception . . . and I was convincing myself that I lied to my self, because deception was gnawing my mind. My self-esteem and self-confidence took a harsh blow during this short, but yet how intense time.
The other birds in me were dying out of passion and enthusiasm.
But I am not a fraud, for I write. I am not useless; I endorse all of my responsabilities; good for others. I am not stoopid; I certainly know what I want, and certainly know what I am doing. I am not delusional; I see opportunities from my own perspective.
I’ve been doing it all wrong, of that I am sure. And though how slow I am, and how much time flowers take to bloom in me; and how slowly the birds in me learn to spread their wings, my mind is a fertile land. Perhaps I’ve seen an oasis which was only a mirage, or an oasis that they made me think was only a mirage . . . But the oasis in me is broader than this oasis, which by the way, is not a mirage.
Too bad! I guess, for I shall continue my way more individually than ever before. My fictional, poetic, and blogging happy endeavors appease my soul, and I envision a bright future filled of serenity, only because I swim inside this creative lagoon. I don’t see myself persuing these other activities that infuriate and frustrate me; that lock me up in total distress. No! I won’t give more power to negativity, for I want to live in happy places. The birds in me have the right to chirp as much as they like. I have the right to express myself, to express my creativity, and I can’t, and I WON’T, take responsability about how others personally interpret my writings – which to me is art for the sake of art.
If I had abandoned my creative persuit, I don’t think that I would have seen again the lagoon where I birthed out; I wouldn’t have found myself again. I would have been a total wreck. So I’ve decided that no matter what, I’ll keep trying, and if I don’t succeed, well, at least I know that I am making things that passionate me, and that I found a creative leisure that makes me happy.
I have always been a quiet-over-confident type of person, mainly due to my loyalty and worship of the self; and where most of my tragedy shows stem from the fact that my self-esteem has taken a harsh blow. I lose all self-control when I feel that my self-esteem has been attacked; I see red, and I lose all sight of the pathway that I’ve slowly built.
My failures, mainly when I’ve planned and masterminded everything on my own, lead me to those feelings that are very hard for me to digest – that taste of bitterness remain stuck in my mouth for endless periods of my life.
For me, there is always someone or something else that is responsible for my failures, my mind then designating a culprit behind the unrealisation of my dreams – the start of my fall inside the pit of delusions, where these persisting gloomy thoughts turn into obsession.
Everyday I’ll be obsessing about who or what is, or are behind my failure – I’ll be telling this or that to my husband, or this or that when going at my mom’s place, looking sick, mad, psychotic, delusional, and where they will all try to assure me that it’s only in my head, and where… *sigh* well, you see the picture of them panicking when I go through this delirious phase – mother, sister, husband eyes go-go😳 while am raving mad, and being paranoiac about… well, it’s much more that I am being way to over dramatic, suffering from irrationality, going through some type of disturbance due to denial of failure, a sense that I have betrayed the self, my own self. Just a delusional type of indignation.
This obsession, it clouds my mind and prevent me from seeing what I’ve achieved, that is, my success of having written a whole book, one hundred poems for the upcoming one, as well to have written all these poems and articles for this blog, and so many short stories penned and typed here and there; this persisting indignation, it also make me forget about what I can do, that is write, versus my inability to make the right decision about choosing the right platform to sell Darcocyte, or even my incompetence to market myself, my book, this blog, my writings.
Eventually, after having been very very very angry (the delusional, irrational, and irrelevant kind), while anxieties made me eat a lot😂 – the viruses suddenly appeared, and in a strange way, my anger concerning the web, Darcocyte, and everything else that were primar sources of my frustration and craziness, quieten down. It was the shock, a large baff in my face, the sudden realization that I’ve been acting like an insane paranoiac, accusing everything and everyone, blaming others for I’ve not been able to complete my dream.
Things did not went my way and as I had envisioned them to be, which caused much anxieties and a great deal of annoyance in me; even going so far as to prevent me from finding solace in everything that I have already realized, even forgetting about all the years it took me to hone the skill of writing, the long hours of practice, the analysis of the books I love, the long wait until I finally finish Darcocyte – and then, just like that, Corona came around, slapped me in the face, and life suddenly seemed too short and fragile for me to be living inside the continuous and perpetual agony of denial, delusions, and paranoia. I am way too much in love with life and of all the beauty it contains to continue inflicting myself with the heartache of failures.
It’s hard for me, as a mother, wife, daughter, sister, a family member, a friend, to face the reality of this virus that is eating us up… It’s such a harsh situation, mainly when you have loved ones. Everything and everyone has been obliged to slow down – to think, to repurpose, to….. fill in the blank here; and where I had to rethink and repurpose my plans, too, going blindly into the uncertainty, while facing whatever is coming my way.
The aftermath of this whole crisis, what would it be? I wish I was the oracle or had that crystal ball, but everything right now is so uncertain and inaccurate, thus I continue to write and blog amidst the destruction, even forgetting that there was once denial and anger, and just doing what my heart wants, hoping that my loved ones and everyone else remain safe and sound.
Just a simple user
There was a time where I was taken aback by the websphere. I was discouraged, I was confused, I was overwhelmed — mainly due to the fact that I was blind as a bat flying in daytime. Thing is, to get the necessary control over something, you need to first and foremost have even the minimal knowledge of how it works; and to know the mechanism behind a process, you need to learn it as to be capable of designing your subsystems, as to be able to operate it as you wish and be the chief on top of that creation… and that’s from where stem my habitual frustration, which most of the time affects my online posting mood. I never had any whatsoever control. I am a simple user.
With time I came to understand that the main ingredient to a successful digital entrepreneurship is in fact your IT knowledge and background, or any other direct affiliation you might have with the internet system. And that’s where I got it wrong right from the start. I am not a web developer, I have no single knowledge of the in-depth of how IT systems work, nor am I affiliated to any of these subjects. I am only a droplet in the digital lagoon. My head is filled of dreams while surfing on the surface of the sea – not caring what lies underneath.
The internet and its components are complex processes, so are the software that were built upon this main foundation — subsystems that are easily manipulated by those behind the scenes – the back office – the core of the filaments of the web. And to actually have a minimum control over traffic, design, the security of your site for users and as well as your own data, one needs to be actually related in which ever ways to heightened level knowledge of the know-how IT system foundation works, as to be able to operate and manage your own web system… Isn’t it the truth? Mainstay: the person or thing that something depends on most in order to continue or be successful.
Thus, to prosper online, you may choose to become one of those tech moguls that have knowledge of development with full control over their products — literally go big, or else, remain a user that relies on control systems, which might as well be into deceitful and misleading activities that users, or even their site authors, might not be aware of, thus putting us, the users, and our work to great risks, perils, and hazards.
In the end I am only a simple user that relies on the virtual equipment and materials built, programmed, and managed by others . . . and as a natural born control freak, there are things that are hard for me to digest. But now that I am starting to get it, and where all of my illusions about the web have been shed — mainly my daydream of spreading pages and pages of my works from various high towers—yes, from the perspective of others, it would have been quite insane doing it like that—but where I strongly believed that on the internet it would have been elsewise, say, publishing, distributing, and posting to a grand audience… wouldn’t that hilarious and quite delusional musing fits what the internet should have been here. Me and my silly dreams of wilderness and independence.
But still, as a simple user—which I guess I’ll remain so for I only want to use the web to write stories, blog, create content, and as well as to make connections—I prefer to run within these complex systems and organizations than that of being killed, captured or whatever else, in a wilderness filled of vicious hungry predators, and whatever else cyber criminals that might be hidden on these isolated pathways. I am very very far from my dreamland, this all thing is only a joke.
↬Related: The poem I wrote for 2019
Productivity through total focus
I’ve been flying on cloud nine, woolgathering all of the ideas that might make up my poetry book i-Organel Dreamscape. It was a mindscape filled of wonderment, where I’ve been meeting with all the creatures that run wildly within my dreams—those figments that make up my imagination—and expressing all of these moments in the form of the poems that I’ve been writing during these last days that I’ve been away — where in all, I’ve been able to mind-gather one hundred poems, themed surreal for my book i-Organel Dreamscape.
I’ve enjoyed every single hours spent within the realm of my deepest fantasies; my mind hooked on this new form of creating and producing; where I’ve experienced the power of productivity through isolation and total focus.
Now I understand why it took me so much time to write Darcocyte — lack of concentration and focus, due to these little online distractions (trying to get followers), and learning Internet basics (for blog optimization and understanding of digital tools).
Now I understand that I can’t do everything at the same time, for my creativity is affected in the worst possible way, through all of these hopping here and there, giving my energy for nothing. Now that I know clearly about what empowers my creativity and writing productivity; I’ve decided that each time I have to create, I’ll sneak away inside of my creative den, as to focus all of my energy on whatever I need to produce.
I have enormously thought about all of this, and I am sure that in this gigantic ant hill, I am a producing ant — for all I want to do is write my imagination away, blog, take amateurish photos and make graphics to only post on my blog, social feeds, or elsewhere; spread my ideas or thoughts, share my writer’s lifestyle, and all of the inspiring things that I like . . . that’s all I wanna do. I don’t want to spam with URLs, scroll feeds as to search and analyze those that might connect with me, or else constantly trying to grab their attention . . . no, I just want the intended audience to organically find my feed, to naturally connect with me — those that my style, mind, ways of expressions, and works appeal to; and from there, connect and do all the follow ups needed.
For me, marketing is a very cacophonous-warlike-ungentle-guerillalike work, which surely pays off (if younger, unmarried, or was male, I would have rock this essential biZ part, believe me🤣), but it’s a very rough route that drains all of my energy and renders my brain completely dried out of its creative juice, while frustrations and dramas arise from deep thinking about how to attract social medias followers or readers to my blog. And at this stage of my life, I prefer channel my energy into thinking about what to create for my blog, or what to write, or even continue my learning . . . instead of focusing on running after readers or followers. And as this whole thing is too difficult to do all alone, I will have to mastermind a new plan to integrate to my new master plan . . . but what’s for sure, is that I am not quitting the WebSphere, for It’s too addictive and too futuristic, especially right now..
Well, about Amazon, it has not at all been fruitful for me . . . I’ve been completely wrong. Will have to search for new ways of selling my works.
My heart is very heavy, but its okay…
So, thank you very much to the only one that has bought my book . . . I’ve got only 40 cents (still retained), loll (strange, when I had signed for 30 percent of the money and not 20 percent), but again, its okay…
I’ve learned that doing everything in solo was extremely tiring and demanding
And during these last 2 months — where my daily activities have been shackled by the habitual seasonal remue-ménage — I’ve learned that if I want to be able to attain a degree of posting consistency, all the while being present online for discovery, I needed to manage my time and keep up with an organisational schedule. All of these changes into my posting schedules, and as well as being absent on my social accounts, is due to the fact that lately I’ve been running out of energy, for there are two little cute boys fueled to the max, who are running around the house, doing what every normal child of their age do. Thus, since the beginning of these summer holidays, my days are so much filled with child-play buzzing sounds and television being on all day, that I ended up being exhausted; unable to properly focus on deep things.
On months like these I wish I had a soundproofed room where I would have been able to retreat and concentrate into a quiet and serene environment. Nevertheless, as my children are the apple of my eyes, and that as parent I am quite the anxious type, I do think that my brain would have been constantly bombarded with concerned feels and questions about what they might be doing without adult surveillance, for they are still at an age of exploring and learning through innocent mischievous deed. A reminder that the other day, while I was busy writing, and where I thought that they were both quietly playing into the other room, when actually they were busy trying to fix something flammable with a lighter, and where the incident that followed could have resulted into the burning down of our house. So, I prefer to keep eyes and ears on their activities than focusing on writing while they are on holidays.
Which is why I decided to diminish my blog-posting rate – concerning the ‘log entries’ category – to 2 times per months, where in between, I will write what floats into my mind at random. I’ve also reduced posting on social media for now so as to not get more overwhelmed than I am. I need to think about a good execution plan with which I would be able to stick with through the long term. And as for my book, I get to it at night or early in the morning, only when my house sleeps.
Yes, I admit here, and say it loud and clear, I am paranoiac, and being online triggered something unhealthy in me (knowingly that I was completely computer illiterate and not at all tech savvy), where I ended up erasing all of my former blogging and social accounts, on which I have been working so hard since the year 2014. And now look at me, I have to start all over again, and this, with no whatsoever proof at hand of the progress I made since then. All data lost . . . and for what reasons? Because one day, I woke up and realised that my unfounded trust issues were too much for me, thus, just like that, I erased everything. All these years of hard work . . . gone in a finger snap.
When I realised my dumb mistake of erasing everything that composited my former accounts, it was way too late to reverse the actions I made. And I, who wanted so much to integrate web materials into my entrepreneur journey, as much as creating an e-portfolio to show off my skills, well, I ended up failing to do such. I might have trust issues concerning the web system into its integrality, but this does not mean that I should have erased all of my former accounts without any proper analysis and actionable measures (once again, blame it on me being computer illiterate).
*That was a silly thing to do – I acknowledge. Because as someone who has chosen to stick with the opened web (which is a space created by visionary geniuses (I guess so) who don’t have dumb and evil intent and that are responsible driven (I hope so) and who are expecting people to use their products consciously) I should have in return trusted that these parties with resources would have consciously managed the web space in sagacious ways (!).
*Note that this paragraph seem to stem from my speculative fiction faculty — or not.
Nevertheless, I sometimes think that I got too much into this web thing without knowing a damn thing about what I was doing, too star-eyed by all those posts bragging about all the dough made online (although some said that it took them about 8 years to make money online, while others said that they had to pour in lots of money) — but it has never been that easy, isn’t it? And it took me some time to understand that there are many other factors that make online money makers . . . well, online money makers.
My real problem is that I get too easily entranced into fanatic futuristic visions (blame it on my phantasmagorical mind), while thinking that the web might be an evasive space; same as books or movies, and that it was all about finding ships to follow for inspirational purposes, that is — the outsiders, the non-conformists, individualists, aliens, bohemians, and misfits of the day to day system. But in the end, the web was only a boring place, and not at all at the level of my thirstiness of another genre. Perhaps it is the fact that I am an all grown woman in my mid-thirties with husband and children, and that these were amongst the main reasons why I could not fit inside of this genre of web ecosystem, and this, although I found some genius-mind from websites like WordPress.com, Tumblr, and Pinterest, which to me are amongst the most interesting and inspiring web-spaces for free spirits to hang around. As for the rest, they are too typical, without proper care for the show off of visual aesthetic pleasantness of things, which might feed the mind of thirsty creators (just speaking my mind here). However, these other websites are instead great for staying in touch with locals, and networking locally – good for independents to set up an online presence.
All of these were only fallacious visions of mine – mere phantasm, same as all the stories that run wild in my mind. Or perhaps, I found myself on the other side of the web, or as always, I have skipped too many important steps.
Now, I am starting all over again, prior to what I have learned, and working as hard as I can so as to create content I have lost. But this time, I have learned my lesson well, and as I continue with my book writing, I am also learning some computer basics, with high hopes that I might become a little bit more acquainted with the digital world, as to not anymore lose my works, my devices, or else, erase everything out of despair.
I did not come this far to only come this far, and I intend on continuing this journey; with clearer mind, visions that are a little bit more ingrained into this reality, levelled-up skills, and a little bit more understanding of my computer. I think that I might continue building up my online presence, all the while learning to set up a little indie-biz.
But for now, I am going through most basic steps that require a good online presence, so that as an aspiring author and entrepreneur, I might be able to promote my products, and along the way give accounts of my online hustle, with intent that it might one day help someone out there.