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This  is the end of the book. Yes it is.

I’m extremely grateful for my friend, Danielle, for giving me this amazing book. I learn a lot. Truly I do.

When Danielle first gave me this book, she told me that she still rereading the book and promised to hand it to me as soon as she finished the book. The reason she reread it was, she said, because she wanted to make sure she’d underlined all the interesting and important parts for me.

That’s so sweet.

And when I started to read the book, and as I read page per page, I kept chuckling whenever I saw a sentence or two that could be, indeed, a very useful input or even critics to me. And those sentences are the ones that she underlined. I would even reread it when I saw a smiley Danielle drew on a passage.

I really enjoy reading that, especially with her writing and notes on the book, I feel like I was reading the book with her. It made me feel like attending one of Lamott’s class with her.

So, before I move on with the last quotations from the book, I’d like to thank Danielle from the bottom of my heart. Terima kasih, temanku!

But now the class is about to over.

I was sad, yet at the same time excited for I now I’m gonna read another book. Very excited. Especially since I already decided what the next book would be (check the right side bar, if you wouldn’t mind).

So. This is gonna be my last journal on Lamott’s Bird by Bird. I hope you guys enjoy this journal as well as I enjoy reading the book.

The Last Class

“Write about that time in your life when you were so intensely interested in the world, when your powers of observation were at their most acute, when you felt things so deeply.” ~p. 225

Like I’ve written before, those times are usually the times whenever I felt depressed the most. Should I keep on being depressed, then?

I guess not. I don’t wanna end up like Nikolai Gogol, for sure, despite how brilliant he really was.

These ones are one of my favorite ones (sorry, I got so many favorite lines in this book):

“Try to write in a directly emotional way, instead of being too subtle or oblique. Don’t be afraid of your material or your past. Be afraid of wasting any more time obsessing about how you look and how people see you. Be afraid of not getting your writing done.” ~p. 226

Right. Even if it’s just a practice, it’d mean nothing if it’s left unfinished, right? Besides, a fiction will still stay a fiction.

“Risk being unliked.” ~p. 226

I can’t help but agree, although I must say I’m afraid of this the most.

Before Pramoedya Ananta Toer finally became known and highly respected in his home-country, Indonesia, he spent most of his time in either jail or home, being kept and guarded during Soeharto regime. Of course he was respected too, back then, but imagine his work is not known by his fellow Indonesian for his book was banned for years. It was being translated, of course, in English, and widely distributed to many countries abroad. It was why he became really famous, indeed. But it took me more than 20 years to finally recognize this amazing man. And even now there are still many others who don’t know him (I must exclude my friends, I’m afraid, for most of them have read even more Pramoedya’s book more than me).

“Tell the truth as you understand it.” ~p. 226

Then, after telling the truth, here comes the disguise.

“It is knowingly, maliciously saying things about people that cast them in a false or damaging light.” ~p. 227

The rest of the explanation that follows this quotation is really hilarious. Because we might never know whether any of our friends or families would sue us because they inspired us to create a character, what we should do is actually disguise these characters and make them unrecognizable. And give them teenie little penis (for guys, of course) so they wouldn’t come forth anyway.

The story and the truth will always be ours. But there’s no harm in disguising these characters so they wouldn’t thought that we’d just revealed their secrets. Give them teenie little penis.

I don’t know whether I would actually give them teenie little penis, but I would consider that option to secure myself. I don’t wanna get sued, you know.

“The best solution is not only to disguise and change as many characteristics as you can but also to make the fictional person a composite. Then throw in the teenie little penis and anti-Semitic learnings, and I think you’ll be Okay.” ~p. 230

I’m considering an old hag character now. Who would want to come forth and tell the whole world that the old hag is them anyway?

“This is what separate artists from ordinary people; the belief, deep in our hearts, that if we build our castles well enough, somehow the ocean won’t wash them away. I think this is a wonderful kind of person to be.” ~p. 231

The truth is ours. So is the disguise. We writers tend to build our own world in our own castle. In a good way, though. I think this alone is a guilty pleasure for bloggers/writers. No one can ever take the pleasure away from us.

“Becoming a writer can also profoundly change your life as a reader.” ~p. 233

I couldn’t agree more. This is why I’m so in awe with Michel Faber’s The Crimson Petal and the White. He got me at “Watch your step.” And that was the very first sentence of the very first chapter. The same reason why I love Jostein Gaarder’s works so much. And Stieg Larsson. If only I could take just a chunk of those brilliant brains so I could also put some brilliance into my writings…

No, of course I wouldn’t chop off their heads and took their brains just like what Zachary Quinto’s character did in the series Heroes. Creepy, you know.

But as Lamott puts it, as much as those writers inspired me, I gotta find my own voice. I have to speak up with my own voice, not Gaarder’s, or Faber’s, Pramoedya’s. My own voice.

“You simply keep putting down one damn word after the other, as you hear them, as they come to you.” ~p. 236

“Even if you never publish a word, you have something important to pour yourself into.” ~p. 236

For the sake of the spirit (to write). For the sake of the heart.

“Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul.” ~p. 237

“We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again.” ~p. 237

Lovely words. And very well put as well.

I’m dancing with the absurdity of life right now. And I’m not gonna rush it. Instead, I’m planning to enjoy my every second of it. Oh yes, I’m dancing right now.

Now this is where you ought to finally realize and conclude, that satisfaction, as well as the enriched soul alone, are the actual holy grail of writing. And hereby I end my Bird by Bird journal.

See you on another posts.

I’m almost reaching the last part of the book. I’m getting impatient now for I would like to move on to my next reading (which I still haven’t decided what it would be), yet at the same time, I really don’t wanna rush everything. I still wanna enjoy the book.

But still, I’m reading as fast as I could while trying to slow down as well.

Before I finally reached The Last Class, there’s Publication. One thing that I’d like to read the most. Isn’t this one of the holy grails for most writers?

Apparently not.

“I tell you, if what you have in mind is fame and fortune, publication is going to drive you crazy.” ~p. 214

Right. I imagined.

I only got published twice so far, and that was long time ago as well, and in a Christian magazine as well (not to discriminate Christian community of course, but this should reveal that I have a very limited number of readers, not to mention that not all Christians are going to read my writings–I doubt that), yet I’ve boasted all about it, perhaps more than Margaret Mitchell ever did with her Gone With the Wind.

At some points, I know that publication is not at all the end of the journey. Well, except for Margaret Mitchell, perhaps. At the same time, I still want publication so bad. Really bad that I kept trying to send my crappy writings to any newspaper and magazines available.

Here I am! Please, please, publish my writing even if it’s nothing but rubbish!

But of course, unless I’m Andrea Hirata, or Ahmad Tohari, or Ayu Utami, or Pramoedya Ananta Toer, there’s no way to make sure that even if I ever finally published something, it would be such a sensation.

Reality sucks, so suck it up.

There are bigger chances out there that no one would even notice my (unpublished) book. There are plenty chances as well that no one would even buy my book.

Yet here I am, always dreaming and picturing myself, with my published book. That people would read it and praised it. That people would talk about it over and over.

Then I would read other writers’ books (the more accomplished ones, of course) then I would feel like crap. I mean, who the hell am I? What the hell makes me ever think that my book is going to be as good as these people’s books? They’re sensational, fantastic, and genius. Me? I’m just nobody.

Still, publication is something that I’m after.

Oh, holy grail, indeed.

“…whenever the world throws rose petals at you, which thrill and seduce the ego, beware. The cosmic banana peel is suddenly goin to appear underfoot to make sure you don’t take it all too seriously, that you don’t fill up on junk food.” ~p. 218

Not to mention my ego is already huge.

“You are going to have to give and give, or there’s no reason for you to be writing. You have to give from the deepest part of yourself, and you are going to have to go on giving, and the giving is going to have to be its own reward.” ~p. 203

In another words: make it personal.

“Your work as a writer, when you are giving everything you have to your characters and to your readers, will periodically make you feel like the single parent of a three-year-old, who is, by turns, wonderful, willful, terrible, crazed, and adoring.” ~p. 203

Aha!

My mom always freaked out every time I told her that I would probably not getting married, or even have kids in the future. Well, I’m not saying that I don’t want to, I was simply telling her that it’s a possibility, but apparently, even a possibility freaked her out already. Now I might have just the perfect answer for her. (Writing down the quotation above.)

 The quotation above is probably the reason why it always heart-breaking for writers to get their writings rejected or returned. Because we always make it personal. We always try to put our best effort into it, and these editors or supervisors simply read and then call our best effort as rubbish. Really, who wouldn’t want to electrocute them? If our writings are just like our own kids, then those editors are actually telling us how ugly our kids are.

Fine, I don’t have kids, but you get the idea, right?

“Your child and your work hold you hostage, suck you dry, ruin your sleep, mess with your head, treat you like dirt, and then you discover they’ve given you that gold nugget you were looking for all along.” ~p. 204

Only sometimes, we don’t always get the gold nugget like, stat.

Yet we, as writers, stick to our child, our writings.

Lamott puts it that writing is like giving back. You know the times when we were so much in awe with other senior writers’ books? Writing our book is just like thanking them by writing back to them.

“So write a book back to V. S. Naipaul or Margaret Artwood or Wendell Berry or whoever it is who most made you want to write, whose work you most love to read.” ~p. 204

Enid  Blyton came to my mind. Her works are probably the very first reason why I wanted to write. Of course Michel Faber and Jostein Gaarder also came to my mind right away.

Oh, no. Low self-esteem attack. How am I ever gonna write back to those sophisticated genius people? Compared to their writings, aren’t my writings gonna look like nothing but crap?

“Writing takes a combination of sophistication and innocence; it takes conscience, our belief that something is beautiful because it’s right.” ~p. 205

Oh well, it wouldn’t hurt to try, isn’t it? Writing is, after all, a passion.

“What your giving can do is to help your readers be braver, be better than they are, be open to the world again.” ~p. 206

(sigh)

Okay. Breathe.

Give back. The innocence. Think about Michel Faber. And Jostein Gaarder. Jhumpa Lahiri. Vladimir Nabokov. And my readers. My friends. My family.

I can do this.

What about you? Who do you want to write back for? Who’s your favorite writers? Do you also struggle with the same problem when you write? Just like dealing with a three-year-old kid?

“Publication is not going to change your life or solve your problems. Publication will not make you more confident or more beautiful, and it will probably not make you any richer.” ~p. 185

Hey! A little imagination here, please?

Of course all of us, aspired writers, aim for this specific goal: Publication. Yes, publication, where I thought would lead me to fame. Well, not exactly fame, for I’m never actually sure of it, but at least I could finally google my name and found it alongside my own book.

But Anne Lamott here, ruined my imagination by sharing her experiences about how publication is not where it ends, and that publication is just another beginning. Publication, in fact, is not the most important thing of all–like, if you’re a Moslem, publication is not exactly like finally being able to go to Mecca to finally experience the spiritual journey. It is not at all like finally going to the Holy Land of Israel for Christians.

In this chapter, what really matters–and almost touch my heart, really (I don’t wanna give you the idea that I’m all that sensitive and soft-hearted) is what and who you’re actually writing for.

Lamott then shared this experience about how she finally published her first book about his father who was sick at that time, as well as her other books which are mostly dedicated to people around her–her friend, Pammy who was also very sick at that time, and another book dedicated to single mother like her. She wrote and wrote in order to finish her book before sickness finally got the best of those people–so they would be able to finally read the book dedicated to them before their sickness finally got worse.

That is so sweet, you know.

It’s not merely about the publication, but it’s more about what the book meant for you and people around you.

“So first I wrote down everything that happened to us, and then I took out the parts that felt self-indulgent.” ~p. 193

Writing an autobiography of you might not actually interest everybody, unless you’re Jesus or Barrack Obama. I doubt that everybody actually read stuffs about Barrack Obama, really. But what’s important is the value and the story about your surrounding, I suppose.

Which is why Lamott ended up writing stuffs about people around her–as a present. As a gift, dedicated to them.

I honestly have no clue to whom my book, let alone my prologue, will be dedicated to. My family? My friend? My enemy?

Maybe as I write and babble I would figure it out. I suppose.

So I’ll get back to my writing now.

And eliminated parts that felt self-indulgent.

Okay. Eliminate them. Eliminate them.

“Writer’s block is going to happen to you. You will read what little you’ve written lately and see with absolute clarity that it is total dog shit.” ~p. 176

“Or else you haven’t been able to write anything at all for a while. The fear that you’ll never write again is going to hit you…” ~p. 177

Oh, bummer.

I hate writer’s block. And I’ve been having it over and over for years.

Sometimes I would feel like I had this wonderful ideas about how my stories should turn out. Then I would write and write and write, but as I typed, I realized, if not feel, that the story has gotten sidetracked, and that I didn’t like the story at all.

Then I would shut down my iBook, feeling like crap and go to sleep.

The next day–or a couple days after, I would turn on my iBook again, trying to write something completely new. Something that might fit better than the previous crappy ideas.

So I’d typed. And typed. And typed.

Then I’d scrapped it again because I felt like it’s nothing that I’d imagined it would be.

Of course, I didn’t actually scrapped it.

Well, depends on how crappy I feel at that time, really. If I felt really depressed, I would definitely scrap it. But if I didn’t feel so bad about it, I would just copy-paste it to a new document and save it. Who knows it might be useful, right?

“Writers are like vacuum cleaners, sucking up all that we can see and hear and read and think and feel and articulate, and everything that everyone else within earshot can hear and see and think and feel.” ~p. 177

 I just chuckled because the sentence remind of Overheard in New York and Nguping Jakarta right away. Just in case you don’t know what those two is about, both sites contains silly, ridiculous, funny conversations of passerby in both cities (New York and Jakarta) and sometimes it would turn out to be extremely hilarious. I remember reading posts in Nguping Jakarta (which is written in Bahasa Indonesia and sometimes in slang, though) in an internet cafe and I struggled so hard not to laugh out loud. I bet the guy sitting next to me thought I was nut.

The contributors of Nguping Jakarta are Jakarta citizens who happen to hear funny comments or remarks and would later send what they heard to Nguping Jakarta. The creators of Nguping Jakarta call themselves as Kuping Kiri (Left Ear) and Kuping Kanan (Right Ear). We can never be safe whenever they’re around because, as Lamott puts it, they suck up all that they hear and see and articulate and all. But we feel entertained, really. At least I feel entertained.

Anyway, I guess, I really need to buy index cards and start to bring them everywhere I go from now on. Point is, whenever I feel this kind of stupid block going on, I might need to take the advice from Anne Lamott, saying that I’d better go and take some fresh air, and perhaps, do a little observation here and there, and take notes on everything, related to my story or not, for, we might not know which one might be useful someday. Maybe I should try to make my own ‘Overheard in Malang,’ or perhaps ‘Overheard in The Office.’ But the first would, I guess, make my friends feel so insecure around me and the latter would make me desperate hope that none of my boss would ever read this ‘Overheard in The Office,’ or they’d hang me, I suppose.

Okay.

Breathe.

“The word block suggests that you are constipated or stuck, when the truth is that you’re empty.” ~p. 178

Gee, why I never thought of that?

“The problem is acceptance, which is something we’re taught not to do. …But if you accept the reality that you have been given–that you are not in a productive creative period–you free yourself to begin filling up again.” ~p. 178

Acceptance, huh?

This definitely won’t be easy. Of course I was taught of acceptance, but it was never easy. Someone would come up and told me the opposite, let’s say, that they’re being very productive lately, which would definitely make me feel like crap, or someone would say that perhaps I’m never that good anyway, or perhaps would told me to work and try harder otherwise, and then I would stressed myself out. This last part is where you’d need to take away all the knives and scissors that you have.

“I remind myself of this when I cannot get any work done: to live as if I’m dying, because the truth is we are all terminal on this bus. To live as if we are dying gives us a chance to experience some real presence. Time is so full for people who are dying in a conscious way, full in the way that life is for children.” ~p. 179

Okay. Not helping.

To live like we’re dying?

I’ve been noticing for years, that I felt really productive mostly when I was depressed. And most posts that has gotten most positive comments are, unfortunately as well, the ones that were written when I was in my lowest, darkest, bluest, and bitterest times. No, I’m not lying.

I remember there was one time when I felt really depressed when I was still in college. I was taking more than 20 credits in a semester (approximately around 9-10 classes per week), not to mention 2 additional credits that I spent in the Performing Arts Department to practice my piano and drumming skills, and at the same time, my days were also filled with choir exercise at least twice a week, plus a drama rehearsal about twice a week as well (if I had not mistaken). During that busiest time of my life in college, I was, as well, having a turbulence with one of my dearest friend. We stopped talking, and it tortured me. I felt so alone, and I began checking out all sites in the internet about depression. I even did a stupid checklist on the internet to check my depression level. They said I was heavily depressed. Then I went to the drugstore, telling them that I need a Prozac. A woman told me that I’d need a doctor’s prescription for that, but as another customer came, she’d disappear out of my sight in a second. So I tried another person in that same drugstore and told her that I need a Prozac. She’s probably new, because she gave me Prozac right away.

Anyway, during those times, I remember writing plenty and plenty of blog posts–name it, poems, stories, or just chunks of metaphors.

And that’s when some of my friends told me that they love what I wrote.

Okay, fine, depressed is not the same as dying, but what if, instead of pretending that I’m dying, being depressed is the key for me to be productive?

Well, that could still be nothing but a hunch. Besides, men are always evolving, right?

Okay. Breathe again.

I think I need to sit down and relax for a minute.

‘Your unconscious can’t work when you are breathing down its neck. You’ll sit there going, “Are you done in there yet, are you done in there yet?” But it is trying to tell you nicely, “Shut up and go away.” ‘ ~p. 182

 Okay. I’m gonna go and find some fresh air now. Maybe even brew a cup of coffee.

“When you don’t know what else to do, when you’re really stuck and filled with despair and self-loathing and boredom, but you can’t just leave your work alone for a while and wait, you might try telling part of your history–part of a character’s history–in the form of a letter. The letters informality just might free you from the tyranny of your perfectionism.” ~p. 172

Arrgghh. Another perfectionism. Again.

This is what I actually do at first when I try to make an outline of my story.

Oh yes, dear fellas, I used to make an outline for the story I’m about to write, to mkae sure that I wouldn’t get sidetracked.

I know, I know, I love free writing, and I still do, but even in this part of free writing, some outlines might help.

Or at least that’s what I believe.

I remember writing timeframes in chronological order for a story I was writing.

Well, in outlines, you usually write simple chunks of words instead of a complete sentence in a full body paragraph, right?

But sometimes, a simple fragment sentence doesn’t help. So then I’d write a letter to myself.

Yes, to myself. Does that sound selfish to you?

Nevertheless, the fact is that I wrote a message for myself.

“So after this, what Eddie would want to do is to shut himself in his room and think about his dead girlfriend. He would grieve until his brother, Samuel forced to enter the room and asked Eddie to stop grieving and move on with his life.”

Then I would transform that message into sentences, dialogues and paragraphs.

Or sometimes, I would do that whenever I still feel like writing, yet my time is extremely limited. So I would write and an outline, combined with short messages to myself to remind me on what’s supposed to happen next.

Well, so far, that works. Really does.

Of course there’s still a possibility that after I continued my writing at another time, I might read the message and think that my former idea is stupid. Then I’d write a brand new sentence. But at least I’ve tried to tell myself and remind myself what to do.

At least that’s what I think.

Writing Groups

“So much of writing is about sitting down and doing it every day, and so much of it is about getting into the custom of taking in everything that comes along, seeing it all as grist for the mill.” ~p. 151

Someone to Read Your Drafts

“…writing is so often about making mistakes and feeling lost. There are probably a number of ways to tell your story right, and someone else may be able to tell you whether or not you’ve found one of these ways.” ~p. 163

“But I am suggesting that there may be someone out there in the world–maybe a spouse, maybe a close friend–who will read your finished drafts and give you an honest critique, let you know what does and doesn’t work, give you some suggestions on things you might take out or things on which you need to elaborate, ways in which to make your piece stronger.” ~p. 163

“What works for me may not work for you. But feedback from someone I’m close to gives me confidence, or at least it gives me time to improve.” ~p. 164

I used to sketch a lot back in elementary school. And junior high. And senior high. And I remember when I was little, I love to sketch and making mangas (Japanese comics). Whenever I came upon the manga I used to sketch, I felt so stupid and silly and ridiculous. But, hey, I was 10 at that time, so I sure didn’t feel so ridiculous at that time.

I would sketch and sketch and sketch. Whenever I saw papers and pencil (or pen) I would grab them and start to draw eyes, and then nose, and then mouth. Then I would formed a face (or more like a skull), then there’s the hair, and then the neck, and the last part is the body.

Don’t worry, I barely draw my character naked. Like I said, I was 10, for God sakes.

Then one character lead to another character, one sketch to another sketch, and sketches, and sketches, until I finally created a 2 pages manga.

After that, I would, with excitement, showed my parents my work. And they would smile and told me proudly, “Oh, you’re so talented!”

Yet the truth decided to hit me and slap me cruelly.

Of course my parents would tell me that I did a great job. I’m their daughter, after all. Sakes, I’m the only child, you know.

But my cousins and friends of my age at that time didn’t care that I’m the only child. When I showed them my sketches, they would threw it away and then switched right away to the actual manga (like Dragon Ball, or perhaps Sailor Moon) and then they would told me that they barely understand anything I drew on the paper. They didn’t understand the story, and they didn’t understand why Ami or Meg did this or that stuff.

Then I would explain to them what I actually meant with that sketch. And they would argue that that wasn’t what I draw–at least it didn’t appear to them like that. What happened next? Oh, we’d fight. Like a cat. Then I would cry and ran back home to my parents and told them the cruel things my friends said.

Geez, we were kids. What do you expect?

Of course I would then give up drawing and sketching for some time.

Then I would sketch again.

Later in junior high, I made friends with an illustrator of a famous Christian Magazine, named Jack. I always admire his sketch and his humorous way in delivering his story.

From Jack, I found out that I’m not the only one faced with the cruel reality. He told me that the first time he sketched, he also experienced the same problem.

Oh well, practice makes perfect, right?

Whenever I finished writing–any kinds of writing–I would usually ask my friends to read it. Of course I wouldn’t usually ask everyone to read it, but I would usually ask one to two friends to read it, and tell me what they think of it, when it comes to the content.

I had this circle of friends, who I met back in the university. All of them are from the English Department where I studied, and most of them are writer, if not poetic. I would usually ask them to read it and tell me what they think about it.

When Lamott stated that there would be someone out there, just like our soul mate who’d be able to give us honest critics, at the same time give us support and encouragement–boosting our confidence, I couldn’t be more agree.

These friends are those who I look up to. There are these guys who, whenever I ask them a favor to read my long, boring, cheesy story, would tell me instead that they felt honored to read my story. Then they would give me praises and critics. I’m telling you, the critics are sometimes quite harsh.

There’s this one guy, who would take notes of the feedbacks that he’d give me, specifying precisely on which pages improvements are needed. He would write, “p. 44–the story’s getting plain and boring. Create some conflicts to make it more interesting.”

I remember I was sending a short story to a newspaper, and I asked him to read it first. At first, he didn’t give any critics. He simply gave positive comments.

Yes, I was flattered, yet somehow, my insecurity ask, “What? That’s it?” So I urged him, and asked whether there’s really nothing bad in the story.

Oh well, I can be really annoying regarding things that I write, indeed.

Then he replied, “Dian, you seem to be very eager to better the story.”

He’s damn right.

Although I also felt a sudden guilt, feeling that I’ve been insisting too much, as well as asking too much.

But he’s one of my friends in whom I could put my trust, and could–probably–do no wrong in my perspective. I respect his opinion as well as others, and he could critic me as harsh as he could if he wanted to, and I would still respect it.

Another thing that I would ask my friends to do is, sometimes, to check the language style. I’ve been writing some random stories here in my blog, and all are in English.

All these times, I’ve been very eager and craving to ask some English native speakers to read it and check whether what I’ve written sounds natural to them.

So one day, I asked this friend to read it, and that’s when I actually found faults and flaws in my English.

And I would still do that. Then I would keep bugging my English native speaker friends to read it and all, because I badly, if not desperately, want inputs.

Another that I do right now is joining a Blogging Groups in facebook. Okay, it might not be exactly a writing groups, but believe it or not, it does helps.

When I wrote a story, I would then post it in the group’s wall, and despite of me believing that no one actually read it, people do read it. And what really wonderful by being a part of this group is that some people would eventually leave comments, if not critics, and believe it or not, it boosts me. It encourages me to improve, and to write more.

Or perhaps, when I was stuck with my writing, I would simply browse through the group’s wall, and read some other members’ blog posts. Sometimes it would give me ideas, or simply give mesome breaks and intermezzo before I finally get back to my writing. Perhaps I do not always get inspiration from their posts, but it is always wonderful to me to read what people think of something, or simply read their daily journal. Lamott wrote that writing is about paying attention to little things. Put it in another words: Writing is about sweating on small stuffs. And reading others’ blogs does help.

Or, one time, I remember putting a post containing Writer’s Questions, and there’s this one question asking how often I experienced writer’s block. I said very often, and whenever I had that, I would feel so depressed, and I would doubt that I would make a very good writer. But then other blogger fellas would read that, and would tell me that having writer’s block is normal, and it doesn’t make me a bad writer.

Fine, maybe I never meet them in person. But believe me, there’s a reason why technology and electricity is invented.

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