Kalau ditanya kenapa, alasannya banyak: kerjaan yang menggunung, baju kotor yang menunggu dicuci, bahan makanan yang menanti dimasak. Kalau saya diberi waktu untuk menjelaskan kenapa saya nggak mood nulis, saya rasa saya bisa menghabiskan setengah jam sendiri untuk mencoba menjelaskannya.
Tapi, terlepas dari jawaban yang keluar dari mulut saya, alasan yang sebenarnya ternyata jauh lebih sederhana dari yang orang-orang pikirkan: saya malas.
Malas apa? Ya malas menulis. Malas memikirkan premis cerita baru. Malas menjalani proses riset yang bukan main panjangnya. Malas merunutkan ide dan adegan cerita. Malas menghabiskan cuti untuk menulis draf satu naskah. Malas melakukan swasunting. Malas mengirimkan naskah ke penerbit. Malas menunggu catatan revisi dari editor. Malas menentukan judul, menulis blurbbuku, dan malas berdiskusi panjang untuk menentukan konsep desain sampul buku.
The other day, I fell face down in a parking lot–ripped my upper lip, chipped off my front teeth, sprained my knee, cracked my phone screen, and dented my laptop. Not even a week after, I fell again–this time hitting the back of my head against the floor. I wouldn’t lie; this has been one of the worst week ever for me.
So when I was lying down in the hospital bed, and right after the nurse and the doctor checked whether I had a concussion, I started thinking about this… whole series of misfortune. They came out of nowhere, and they struck like a repeated bolts of lightning. Each with more intensity than the previous one.
What did I do to even deserve this, I had thought. I kept on searching for a satisfying explanation, be it a realistic one or not. Did I lack sleep? Do I suffer from a unique bodily balance deteriority syndrome? Did I upset my ancestors? Did someone hex me into tripping over nothing? It doesn’t matter how illogical the reason is; I just wanted to blame this whole misfortune on somebody. On something.
The other day, I tried something new: I sat completely still for several minutes in the middle of a busy day.
No, I wasn’t sleeping, in case you’re wondering. I merely took several minutes to decompress right there on my desk, in-between my bustling schedule. For around ten minutes, my small desk became my solace of comfort, as I silenced every other outside interference, and focused on breathing alone.
It was then when I realized I’ve neglected this simple decompression method for awhile. Right after getting a new job, I felt like I had to catch up with everyone else as fast as I could, and I sacrificed my much needed rest to work, work, and work.
The funny thing about expectation is, for me, the fact that it swells and expands with time. Take one relationship you have with a friend, for example. I’d bet all my money that you didn’t start off as close as you might currently are.
Like everyone else, you must have started as total strangers, then you gradually become closer. Notice that the expectation you have towards them also grows, almost hand in hand, with the maturity of the relationship.
But what about the in-betweens? You might not have the luxury to afford a writing retreat, and you might already have been doing all the decompression methods I’ve talked about, but you still feel burnt out at the end of each week. Take a step back; it’s normal to feel overwhelmed. Calm down. Take a deep breath. We’ve got this.
“How do you manage to keep on doing this?” one of my team member in the office asked me, right after my boss gave me a stern warning for not delivering the targeted completion date of my project. “Why aren’t you more upset? How could you be so strong?”
I remember I just stared at her, not knowing how to answer the question. It would be a lie to say that I wasn’t upset at all. It was my project, after all. And if I took the warning lightly, I could risk my professional credibility as a project manager. So it wasn’t like I was fooling around, either.
But what my team member said had some truth. Despite being upset, I never did show it to everyone. Despite being torn apart by the warning, I kept on managing the project like it was just another day—as if I never screwed up.
It’s that time of the year again. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas, there’s got to be something to look forward to during this end-year.
I personally love December.
Not only do I get some time off from work, but I also get to spend my days celebrating the holiday season with my family. There’s just something magical with end year gatherings—you know, with all the scrumptious food and decadent desserts. And since I didn’t even try to hide my jittery excitement towards the end year, it may come as no surprise at all when I say that above all that, I also love giving presents to my family and friends.
I love giving presents.
But I couldn’t say I love receiving them.
Not because I don’t love receiving them, of course. But it’s more because people rarely give me presents I actually want. Of course, I know I have to be grateful for receiving any presents at all, but when you’ve spent your whole life getting socks and t-shirts for Christmas presents, you’d eventually get sick of it.
So here’s a list of 5 Gift Ideas for the writers in your life. If you know an aspiring author or even an established author, I’d hazard a guess that they’re probably getting tired with all the uninspiring, run-of-the-mill, boring presents they’ve been getting all their lives. Granted, these are more like my own personal wish-list, to say the least, but I think writers like me would appreciate these items just the same. Continue reading “5 Gift Ideas for the Writers in Your Life”→
With the coming of December, this means I have been posting regularly on my blog every single week for one whole year.
Okay, maybe more than a year.
Back in 2017, when I challenged myself to be more active in this blogosphere, I half-expected myself to quit halfway through, just like how I usually do my new year’s resolutions. In fact, looking back, I am astounded by my own persistence in writing blog posts, to the point where I started questioning why I started doing it in the first place. Continue reading “Why I Started Blogging & How I Blog Regularly for Over a Year”→