Getting Back into Writing

Recently, it feels so hard convincing myself to write something new. You know, be it a novel, a short story, or even a short poetry. There’s always this inexplicable part of my heart that just wouldn’t listen, no matter how hard I try to tell myself to write. Something is clearly holding me back, and I don’t know how to fight it.

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/beverage-black-coffee-blank-coffee-365637/

Maybe the cause of such phenomenon was my fear of expectations. Of living up to a certain standard. Of not disappointing anyone with lousy, uninspiring prose. I’m constantly haunted by a phantom of failure—a projected hallucination of all the walls around me crumbling, should I fail to live up to everyone’s, and my own, expectations.

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Of Friendship

I think there is something twisted about early education in Indonesia: they told us that we must never sort and pick our friends.

In reality (at least, in my reality, since reality itself is subjective by nature), we get to pick our friends even from the earliest stages of our lives.

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/men-sits-of-sofa-1036804/

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Watching the Knots Unfurl

Don’t you find it funny that people drift apart for no reason?

The other day, I accidentally met one of my childhood friends in a shopping mall. The very first thought that came to my mind once our eyes met was, “Crap, now I have to make small talks.” And I don’t know if my friend realized it, but during that moment, the only thing I wanted was to escape from him, go home, and bury myself under a pillow.

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/architecture-black-and-white-building-business-264471/

Yes, I have been called an introvert a number of times, but I really doubt being an introvert would drive me so much that I couldn’t enjoy a short, innocent meetup with an old friend. Especially since nothing bad ever happened between us; it’s not like he was my ex, or he bullied me in school. If anything, our past relationship was cool. Continue reading

Writing a Letter to Myself

In some occurrences between my slumber and waking, I often get strange visions. You know, the ones strange enough you couldn’t help but realize you were still half asleep.

For instance, I once had a strange vision of meeting my younger self right there, inside my room.

 

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-sleeping-935777/

 

My younger self sat in the corner of the bed. It felt really strange seeing myself there—as if I was looking into a mirror, only that the mirror reflects things from the past. In any case, I knew exactly what I was seeing; a phantom from my childhood who refuses to disappear in my sea of consciousness. Continue reading

Decisions that Change Your Life

Once, after receiving my very first job offer letter, I went to the nearest Starbucks, bought a venti-sized beverage, and contemplated for hours whether I should take the job or not.

I remember the interview went quite well. The CEO especially showed a great interest in recruiting me as soon as possible. I recall trying to tell him that I hadn’t even received a confirmation letter from the university to state that I have graduated, but he insisted for me to give him a prompt response for the offer he made.

 

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/blur-brown-close-up-coffee-311276/

 

I should have been thrilled to get the job. I mean, the company might be new, but the team looked solid and friendly. The industry sounded promising. The office location was reachable by Transjakarta. The company was funded by one of the biggest conglomerates in Indonesia—basically, there was no apparent reason for me to refuse at the time.

And yet, it took me hours before I made up my mind and took the job, simply because I was afraid I would be making the wrong decision. Continue reading

Celebrating “Growing Up”

So last Sunday, I met my high school friend, Irene.

She was on a much deserved vacation, and she wouldn’t be staying for long. That alone was enough reason for me to send her a message and ask for a quick meet-up. Because let’s be real, people. It’s always nice to reconnect with friends, right?

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/table-in-vintage-restaurant-6267/

I don’t even recall the last time we met and had a good conversation, since she now lives in Australia. So I have to admit I got a little nervous right before I ordered an online motorcycle taxi to meet her. My paranoid self just loves to imagine the awkward pauses, the detached conversation, and ten million other ways our meet-up would go wrong. Continue reading

Video Games that Changed My Life

I love video games as much as I love watching anime. Granted, I might not be the most versatile gamer around (I might even be one of the worst!) So please keep in mind that this short list of video games are the ones that I have personally played and finished.

Now, my gaming experience started with a SEGA console back home. I remember I used to play Aladdin and Jungle Book on the console almost every day not because I loved it, but more because I didn’t have other forms of entertainment at the time. This is back when playing video games was reserved for the weekends, as I was forbidden to play during the school days.

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Source: https://www.thelibertyconservative.com/how-free-market-economics-birthed-the-video-game-era/

Fast forward several years, and here I am, still being the casual gamer that I am. I still like games with great stories and great music. So it might come as a no surprise when I say I love RPGs the most, particularly JRPGs, due to my preference to Anime. Continue reading

POST Bookshop – a Short, Urban Escape

I am no stranger to indie books. In fact, some of my best reading experiences was from reading independently published books. There is just something magical about holding an indie book in your hands—taking in all that is is, and realizing that the author did everything they could to bring this book into existence.

Of course, the same can be said about traditionally published books, but I cannot deny the quaint charm of indie books, especially since most of indie titles are elusive, limited, or even exclusive.

I had talked about my newfound love in Books Actually from my writing retreat post several months ago. And at that time, I had clearly thought going abroad would be the only chance of me ever discovering an indie bookstore, with the ample amount of branches a certain Indonesian major bookstore has. Imagine how delightful it was when I learned how wrong I was!

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The Place that Nurtured Me

I used to work in a startup company.

It wasn’t a big company per se, but we did have a big dream. It is no secret that in this modern era, founding and nurturing a startup company that will eventually go boom in the market is like a proverbial rat race everyone should participate in. It was almost like the norm, even.

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Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/people-meeting-workspace-team-7097/

I still remember the day when I first set my foot inside the office, back in March 2014. I was still a total newbie and wet behind the ears. The office only occupied one medium-sized room inside a two stories office building in the heart of Jakarta. Having previously interned in a more “prestigious” office that perches on the 28th floor of a rather modern skyscraper, I had clearly thought that this company was a total joke.

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