So I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember – I think I may have penned my first story at 6, though the details are kind of sketchy.
Even if all the years of practice haven’t prepared me for the onslaught of criticism (some constructive, others not so much), you would think that being a journalist would have at least had some sort of repercussions along the lines of thickening my skin a little, right? Wrong.
I’ve interviewed some hard core, downright rude bastards, but still the thought of getting my fiction out there makes me chew my nails till that pinkish skin once safely tucked beneath my cuticles is screaming at my teeth to stop the assault. Why, I often ponder.
I think it is a little like that window pane framing the wall of your bedroom, the one that looks so perfect and impenetrable. The one that makes you feel safe & warm when Mother Nature hurls all she has to offer as she backlashes your house with lightening thunderbolts, wind speeds of 200km an hour, the exploitive UV impregnated sun rays and what else life has to offer your way. When you stand back and look outside, everything seems so completely, beautifully unadulterated. It’s only when you really scrutinise that window, when you get up close and personal and critically analyse the glass shards that make it up, when you peer at it for hours at an end and you circle it the way a lion does its prey, do you catch it – that miniscule, nearly non-existent small crack, no – more like hole, in that unflawed glass window.
That’s when you realise that even through the small hole, if you peek in really carefully, you can see everything inside, and suddenly you’re not as safe as you thought you were only moments ago, and that’s fiction for me. Yes, it’s not my story perse, in as such as that it’s obviously not about me, but it’s still my story, if that makes sense.
Does that mean I don’t want honest and open feedback? Absolutely not – it’s just that I want it about as much as that lonesome, sole nude model imprisoned to bear his/her body in front of about 100 talented art students using them for their art. The fact is, though you may be sculpting their body, their still going to be thinking about whether you can see their love handles or not.