Emo-centric writer at heart.

My friends laugh cause I take up my day, listening to “emo-songs” and posting my findings on FaceBook. It helps my writing. Stephen King listens to heavy metal when he writes and Mitch Albom plays in a band. Writers express themselves through their writings but draw strength and inspiration from the things they love. For me, it’s emotional Indonesian or Korean love songs. I love the music videos that accompany these songs cause it tells the story and they are great sources for stories.

What these songs do is generate the “What if?” questions and these questions spark the quest for an answer and the telling of a story. Stories and plots can be driven by the quest for an answer and I see this pattern in Paulo Coelho’s books.

So it could be horror movies, baking cakes, eating burgers by the roadside or just listening to big-band music. If it’s inspires you to write the stories you enjoy writing, so be it. Whatever that inspires you to write use it to your advantage and make it your strength.

Happy writing!

I don’t want to look back in time.

They say this is the time to look back and look forward and we all hear the same thing each year or we may even wish the same as we did the previous year. Mistakes would not be repeated and we would do better the coming year. We make that solemn promise to ourselves, we won’t make the same mistakes twice but somehow “never” should never be spoken. We draw up a list of things to do and not to do and we wishfully hope 2010 would be the year things would be different.

Maybe it would, or maybe it would not.

Who knows? We can’t tell the future. And we make the best decisions based on the best and most current information we have at this moment in time. So in fact no decision is a bad decision. Only with hind-sight do we determined based on some form of measure, which is bad and which was good. So can we truly say 2009 was a bad year or not? What may have been a bad choice could lead to a good situation in 2010. We never know.

I am saying this as my friends start wishing each other Happy New Year on Face Book. I am an ass when I start thinking, and I’m treating this day like any other year. And I won’t be promising myself anything neither am I expecting much either.

If you step back and look at days and time and years, EVERY 24 hours we live is the same in terms of measured time. The sun rises and the sun sets.

We (humans that is) invented a form of measurement to quantify and divide time in units we can easily refer too. So today is the 31st of December 2009, and tomorrow is the 1st day of 2010. But what if every month had 40 days? Or 60 days? Or what if we lived in 12 hour days? Then 2010 would have been upon us in half the time.

I don’t want to look back at 2009 because it would mean I have to look back all the way in my own remembered history. 2009 should be looked at in reference to 2008 and so on so forth. And looking forward to 2010, can I safely say I won’t make the same mistakes? After all we humans are creatures of habits.

So don’t live in the past, neither don’t fantasize for the future. Live the NOW and savour every moment lived. Time would move relevant to how you perceive it. You want it to move fast, it would move fast. You want time to move slowly, it will move slowly. Time is relevant to the position of the observer, who stands looking at his watch moving clockwise. Ironically, even if our watches moved anti-clockwise, time would remain the same.

Every minute is a 60 second pulse and every second is a 100 mini-second pulse. So if your clock tick backwards it would still be the same as those ticking forward.

So for tomorrow, I want to create something new. Regardless, if its the new year or not; I choose to create something new. To add to the excitement of a changing universe. To introduce something that would find its place in time and be remembered by those that share the same space with it. I want to add to the jumble of created instances we have crowding our existence.

How do I do that?

By doing what I do best. Writing. Composing. Seeking the story that needs to be told. Adding to the body of stories people carry stored in their minds.

For that, I want to experience life. Each day as if it was my last. To live with urgency. To live as if life dependent on it. To not be afraid to take part in the trickery of life, and be able to say at the end of it.

“I lived my life.”

The Bicycle book cover

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The book should be out this week (Christmas week) and priced at RM12 for Peninsula Malaysia and RM15 for Sabah & Sarawak . I love the simplicity of the cover.

Work in progress, writer’s write not sleep.

It’s been a while (a long while) since I last wrote anything. It’s a situation when life and situations come in between you and your craft. In this case, my life came in between me and my writing. When I could have spent hours crafting away the next book, I spent it couching away; over old DVDs and hosting imaginary friends.

There’s a “work in progress” folder in my iBook. It’s there to remind me, I’ve got book projects a plenty. Each time, an idea comes to me; I piece it together and open a project folder. There is no shortage of ideas for a book. The only obstacle is my own perverted laziness. The kind of laziness that causes you to spend all your money, moan about the pains of the world and make you a pain in everyone’s butts.

In short, I’ve been a jackass to my craft.

I’m a writer and writers write. That’s what we do best. It’s the only thing we know how to do well. We put thought into words. We unveil the mysteries of everyday life. We unfold the jigsaw of circumstances that play before us for an audience to understand and remember. We draw laughter, shed tears, inspire minds, create arguments and drive passion with a compilation of words, formed into sentences that spark the intellect.

We are writers and we write; not sleep on the job.

We are people of the script. We fashion words out of thin air. We watch and bother about the lives of those we see pass through our field of vision. This came to mind (as I write this):

The cold washed over her face, and she shudder to think that she was all alone, in the street, walking home in the rain. Her makeup did not hold, her mascara a stream of black on pale skin. Yet it help mask the tears. The pain. The anguish. She was lost for a moment, standing by the street corner, where the stand sold burgers for a ringgit and half. In the rain, all roads look the same and no matter which path she took, it was all the same. She would still be alone. Lonely and depressed. In the rain, all roads lead to the same conclusion. And she stood there, pondering her choices while the burger-stand man stood watching and wondered if he should stop selling burgers for a ringgit and half.

Creativity is 10% inspiration, 90% hard work. We are writers. I am a writer and it’s time I started writing. I’ve got all those “work in progress” folders to clear out.

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Don’t you hate writers block?

I’m having one of those nights where I stared at a blank screen and my mind just refuses to budge. Yup, writer’s block. Or just a classic case of I’ve-ran-out-of-stories.

Yup. I’m stump and downright frustrated, and I know this can go on for weeks. It happened as I was writing Jasmines and again when writing The Bicycle. I stop writing for weeks, all because my mind just refused to write. I took long walks or merely allowed my imagination to go wild.

So when, you get writer’s block. Don’t worry. It’ll pass. All you need to do is keep yourself healthy and enjoy the vacation your mind has put you into. Pick up a new hobby or something. Anything to keep that mind active. Eventually, you will find yourself sitting at your desk again, and with new found vigor, you’ll write again.

So if you have writer’s block, what would you do?

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Goodbye Yasmin Ahmad – Malaysian filmaker

I had the privilege of meeting Yasmin Ahmad some years back and I’ve been a fan of her work since then. She was unforgettable. Her works, incredible. What else can be said of a true Malaysian story teller. Someone who, in her movies and short commercial clips was able to tug at our hearts, making us laugh, cry and wonder. She wrote on a canvas that moved us to believe in simple things. Some deemed her work as a tad controversial or un-Malaysian. Yet she took it in her stride and looking at it another way, there was a response to her works which meant it did what it was suppose to do – touch hearts.

Check out this tribute and I am sure you will feel the same way I did when watching her work – The Best of Yasmin Ahmad.

Dealing with myself,looking at the man in the mirror.

This post has nothing to do with writing or being a writer but maybe a little, depending on where it takes me. I finally managed to open up to a group of people tonight. Telling them some of the anguish and pain I have had to go through the past few months. It’s actually a huge step for me to open up to a group of people. I am dreadfully private and wary around people.

Ironically, it’s in my writing that I feel liberated to speak. As I conjure up stories, I inevitably write about my life. Write about my thoughts and aches and pains and anguish and joys. It through the channel of putting thoughts to paper, I find release. A non judgmental world where I can roam free.

Maybe it’s me, but writers seemed to be people who look at themselves in the mirror and seek avenues upon which they can describe the image that they see. Often times, attempting to mirror the image as a picture of what society or life should be like. But there’s a problem with the image in the mirror. It is a picture of a singular person and we may be faulted as being a narcissi when talking too much about one’s own self.

So tonight I looked at the man in the mirror and attempted to describe him to a group of people. In a small way, it was my way to deal with my own inner demons. A form of inner therapy, from which healing may take place. I’ve been through a lot the past few months. I’ve made mistakes and brought immense pain to those around me. Partly, because I’ve been a narcist about things and also a total ass. Couple that with stubbornness of the nth degree and an inability to listen to reason.

Unfortunately, that’s me.