I guess this is one dream which everyone who has a thinking mind has in common. Why is ‘writing a book’ a goal so glamourous? The gratification from writing something that will remain in a remote bookstore where it might get picked up by a stranger to cause a direct or indirect effect on him- is that it? Is a book a declaration of your being? Or immortalization of your words? It is perhaps both and more.
I want to write a book because I like leaving messages. I think they are thoughtful and they touch lives. The book will be my message and if it strikes a chord with a few readers, it will give me immense joy of validation. I can almost imagine a sardonic Hugh Laurie (in his Dr House avatar) sitting in the corner and smirking at my vanity. I know it is a petty reason to write a book.
I know the real reason to write a book is to send a message across. The best books are the ones that have something to say which hasn’t been said yet. Great books are the ones who say it without stating it. Mine will be a petty book mostly because I have nothing to say. Whatever is needed to be said has been said or is being said already. We have had too much talk about poverty, selfishness, lovelessness, charity, kindness, virtue, ego. It has all been stated and re-stated. I am not a man of strong points anyway. I get put off by books which are idea driven. I cannot read motivational books for my life. They eat away at my soul, they nag me, ask me to be a better person, take up the initiative for their causes. I do not feel strongly about any of those things. Even the things that have caused tragedies in my life, I am weirdly okay with their existence. I don’t want to murder every bad guy who crossed me, I don’t want revenge from the guy who stole my girlfriend or from the girl who left me from some other guy. I feel nothing.
I see around myself, people motivated and aggressively marching forth, trying to win arguments, trying to serenade the crowds and that makes even whatever urge to win that was left in my heart vanish. I am not a man of competitions and I cannot write a novel that can win awards.
I am not saying success doesn’t excite me or that I am a lazy bum. Maybe I haven’t found my purpose yet, maybe I never will. Maybe I will never have a book on those bookshelves, maybe my book will sell millions of copies. Yes, those are the possibilities and I am okay with all of them.
Let me explain my detachment some more. See, we didn’t have choice about our births, our families and one might humour himself into believing that he chose his own career, it was more or less based on some degree of chance. The things you’re feeling strongly about, they came to you because you happened to be in that sort of environment. If you’re this easily motivated for a cause, how can I trust you with it?
I think we trust the wrong kind of people. We trust the ones who are the loudest. The ones who commit less actually understand the value of commitments and that’s why I value stoicism. I am saddened and angry over a lot of things but my book will not be a negative one. It will not fight the things I want to fight because then, I would be using my pen to speak louder than it should. I would state things as they are and then move on to happier things. It will be a back and forth slice of life kind of thing and that’s why it will not be an award winning novel.
In my next post, I will talk about my love life. 🙂