Monday, February 25, 2008

is there a future?

Other than the dreaded writer’s block, staying inspired, enthused and committed to writing is one of the biggest challenges I face as a poet and writer, especially because I continue to dream of living solely off my writing, my passion.

Over the years, I have attempted to do this with extremely limited success, but I still dream of being able to in the future. I envy writers who are able to take a sabbatical and commit to their writing for any particular period, whether a week, a month or a year.

For those of us who have to squeeze the words in between hustling other hustles, it can be hard staying focused on that end goal. At times, it seems easier to pursue the whole writing thing as a hobby as opposed to attempting to build a career out of it. But, the heart, the soul demands that the words be spoken.

Anyway, I struggle to stay excited about the whole poetry writing thing, especially since, in the last two years, I haven’t really been involved in the whole scene in Joburg or beyond. But today, I was fortunate enough to spend some time with Nandi, from Inside Out Literar
y Arts Project, an NGO involved in schools programmes in Detroit. It was refreshing to be able to talk poetry and get a different perspective on it.

I have, over the last year, discovered that my joy, my passion lies in the interaction with youth on poetry and writing. They still retain a love that hasn’t been tainted by the external, such as commercialisation, career, etc. They write because they love to. And in being allowed into their space, I remember that I write because I cannot not write. Whether I reach any measure of success in my career as a writer or not, I will always love the Word. And I will always write. Nandi reminded me of this, through her sharing of experience, thought and knowledge.

It is not always easy, but we all need to remember why we do what we do. Why we find pleasure in those experiences. We also need to remember that success is defined by self. Keep on reaching, stay focused, remember and enjoy the ride. It is the experience that counts.

Just a thought

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