Sunday, June 28, 2009

More Habitual Grumbling from a Grumpy Writer

I guess moving house is one big traumatic task. I so much hate it that I have sworn not to do it again, ever. I am told there a people in Bombay who move house every year because their tenants do not trust to keep them for more than a year, there are people who move house to different cities and even different countries. Given a chance I would like to psychoanalyze their brain cortex for their unique neuron activity.

For the past twenty-five years I have been a resident of New Bombay and the house had developed a lot of faults that no amount of reparing could mend. Therefore, being a stand-alone bungalow, I decided to raze it down and build from scratch. I filled up the umpteen bank loan forms, ran around to get no objections from an array of local municipal authorities, before the construction could start. Then the excruciating process began: of shifting to a new place, settling there, going to work, changing jobs, supervising the job, pulling up the contractor, cajoling the bank officer to disburse the funds, in fact, I ran around like a monkey with his tail on fire.

Then when it all got completed I couldn’t believe my luck. I have a private terrace, a small study where I am keying all this in, it came out rather nice, touch wood. Touching Wood. I can listen to the approaching rain over the hills, watch the rainforest of the valley where Artiste Village is situated turn into thousands of shades of green, wake up to a symphony of bird sounds, and despite a few faults of plumbing, the house has turned out well.

Then the task of moving into the new house. We had accumulated a lot of junk as we all do over the years. There were hundreds of books to be stowed into boxes and taken to the new home, old clothes to be discarded, gifts to be thrown away(Most of our nephews and nieces gift us expensive perfumes knowing perfectly well that we don’t have any use for them. They persist. So, it gathers dust and ultimately ends up in the garbage.), old photoframes to be dusted, outsize furniture to be laboriously taken downstairs and then taken upstairs, shoes to be thrown away, and most importantly, files and documents to be taken care of.

But most of disturbing of all is dusting old copies of manuscripts and submissions that are waiting to be made to publishers (which I had copied and kept expecting a deluge of requests for these). Here I go all sentimental. There’s an inch of dust on my novel, and an added half an inch on my collection of poems. I have three publishers who haven’t yet said “no” to my debut novel (neither have they said "yes"), and hundreds of stories and poems that are awaiting keenly to see ink and paper. I go all sentimental and teary eyed. Only the schizophrenia of having to shift so many things brings back to my senses. Then what can I do but wait, hoping, not daring to give up because of the statements of pride I have made about my uncles being great and pioneering writers. Yes, I have to persist and I will because, after all, it is my calling and writing has given me so much which I cannot ignore.

So here I sit in my second floor study, beside the terrace and fingers to keyboard make depressions of these words for my blog post. What does the future hold for me? Will I be published? Will I receive an acceptance letter from a publisher instead of the rejections that now have become a part of my life?

What do I care even if I haven’t succeeded as I had imagined I would? After all, I have tried my best and given back to writing a few words of comfort to the many writers who may be reading the story of my struggle. So, then, even if I don’t get published I have hopefully given to the world some gyan (Indian Zen, actually it’s the other way around, Indian Gyan got corrupted to Chan in China and later on crossed the seas to Japan and again got corrupted to Zen.) through what you are now reading – this blog post.


Anonymous said...

hi.. just dropping by here... have a nice day!

joiedevivre said...

sir you know you might get some good old manuscripts..some subtle thoughts..and new words to elaborate mind sets about shifting home :)