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Writing about nothing in particular

By 18/07/2008writing
Writing about being a pen with ears

Writing about being a pen with ears

Writing is always such a tricky thing to do. The minute you decide you want to write “about” something, in a “particular way”, you feel strained. I have often found that it is easier to permit myself to write rubbish, to accept that one cannot produce works of true genius all the time, and in the cases of some writers, maybe never at all.

It is the same with all art I suppose. You are trying so hard to create a masterpiece that you forget to relax and let things come to you. At the end of the day, it is important that you listen to what comes to you and take it down, instead of trying to “make” something.

I wish I could treat writing like I treat my reading. I read, and read too much for my own good, but not so I can sit for an exam, or gain something material. I do not have to be good at reading, and I can read anything, from manuals to menus, completely uncaring of what “quality” I read. I have read Harlequin romances and Goethe on the same day and enjoyed both. They were both worth my time, and I am not ashamed to say it.

Maybe I am not destined to become a great writer, I just don’t have it in me. But that’s alright. As long as I am enjoying what I am doing, or following a compelling need within, I should not complain.

Here is hoping that I get the “I” out of my system in this and my other blogs, and when I write otherwise, am able to forget that an “I” exists. A giant pen with ears— that is who I am, simply taking dictation from somewhere up above, or deep within.

I am not a writer, but a secretary to Someone Who Knows, taking dictation.

Now I have to make sure I write that down on my writing-desk!

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her next literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and was published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • Ovidia says:

    I love how much you’re enjoying your reading. I’ve started to feel it’s a duty but will go back & re-look at my approach… so thank you for that!

    & I also love the ‘taking dictation’ image!

  • Lofter says:

    As with all things, my friend, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And, as with most creative minds, yours is most critical of your own work. Write for the love of it – if others love it, that’s just gravy.

    I still think you’re brilliant. 😉

    “Write for the love of it”—-exactly what I am trying to do at the moment. You are sweet. A lot of my friends in real life think I am brilliant too, but that makes me think even worse of myself ” They can’t really think I am brilliant, can they?” I end up asking myself. The answer is usually a big “no!” 🙁

  • indigobunting says:

    I love that you read Harlequin and Goethe on the same day, enjoyed both, are not ashamed to admit it. And one thing I love about this blog world is meeting people I love to read. If someone loves to read you, does that make you a great writer? Now, there’s a question to ponder.

    Indigo, you are such a lovely soul, always making me feel like I have a value and a purpose. Thank you. I appreciate it all the more because I think I am in the midst of a huge “self-doubt” crisis.

  • The dictation angle is interesting because I think most writers can relate to the idea that sometimes we are merely instruments – which I think proves you are a great writer. Why would a “someone who knows” bother speaking through anyone less?

    Annie, wow. Thanks for the compliment. But I always tend to think of myself in the lines of “secretary, not a writer”!

  • Ray says:

    You’re completely right. Writing about anything that crosses your mind without big theme and time setting is much more fulfilling than anything else.

    As it come to blogs, that’s absolutely enough.


    Thanks for stopping by my blog, Ray, and hope to see you here again. Yes, on a blog it is always enough to write without much of a large setting in mind, but I am sometimes not sure it is the same with a novel, or even a short story. I live in hope, though:)

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