CURRENTLY READING:

The Rosie Result (Don Tillman, #3) by Graeme Simsion
The Laws of Human Nature by Robert GreeneHotel
Lonely Hearts by Heather O'Neill (NL)
Children of Ruin by Adrian Tchaikovsky

02 December 2019

a thing called sketchnote


I did not know sketchnoting was a thing. But it was the way I studied and took notes in class (while the teachers thought I was not paying attention 'doodling'). So I tried it with a Ted talk. So much fun!

21 November 2019

Book Review: Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky




Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky


Wow.
Wow.

It is hard to describe as hard as it was to imagine while reading. It starts with a bang. drags you in like a black hole. Throws you into a completely different world involving giant sentient spiders. For whom you end up rooting for as humans are just bastards. And then wow. You become a spider lover, much like what happened when you read Charlotte's Web as a kid. But then hardcore.
I do not want to get into spoilers as this book is simply amazing but I will describe some factors.

Characters:

Go FABIAN! He was my favorite, to say the least. I found Portia at times annoying but other times ok. She was the hero after all, but a bit of a robotic hero. The struggles of her biology VS her sentient mind was evident, but it often led her to act a bit standard. Unlike the others.
Humans... I was annoyed every time the humans interrupted the spider narrative for yet another a-hole dispute over power. But they were the reflection of our own crumbling society.

Plot:

There were so many social issues concentrated on these pages that it was hard for me to keep track of. But they were obvious and made you realize how selfish and ignorant human beings can be.

Conclusion:

I love how I finished this book in exactly a month as I plan on reading once a month again. But I am looking forward to the next one. However, I first need to finish the Rosie Project!

My love: ♥♥♥♥♥


11 November 2019

an art project


An art project for work just for fun. I finally delivered them last weekend and it was an amazing success! I haven’t done this before so I was a bit nervous of the reactions. However I am very proud I finished them and inspired to draw more. Which is what I will do now!

They will slowly be posted on Instagram in the next 3 days.

Make sure to follow!

11 May 2017

as a matter of being


They are hidden there in the shadows of existence. Amelia knows where to find them. Her family never understood. Amelia knew no one could or would. She was different. She saw them lurking behind each hidden shadow. She hid from them, just as they hid from everyone else.

There was one on the bench that day. It did not hide. So Amelia, with the same courtesy, did not as well. She stood across the muddy path. They stared at each other. This has never happened before. Amelia did not know what to do next. So she did what any stranger would.

“Hi,” the vocal sound barely escaped her lips.

“Hi,” it replied. No sound escaped its’.

“Are you not afraid?” Amelia asked. Clearly ignoring her own fear.

“Why? Are you?” It asked again in its’ soundless voice.

Amelia shook her head, “but if they find you…”

“Who?”

“The others. You must hide.”

“But then, if I hide, it’s as if I do not exist at all.”
Amelia considered the predicament for a moment.

“But I know you do,” she answered with certainty. “And if I do, then you do exist, right?”

“I’m afraid not. I would become a thought, an image, a memory. Something which was there but now it’s not. You will speculate my existence. Wonder if what you saw was real or a figment of your imagination. This has been the way for a thousand years.”

“But I know you exist. I do not need proof.” Her eyes began to water and her voice to quiver. The realization of their mutual loneliness was breaking her.

“Oh, but I do.”

“Amelia! What are you doing? Don’t stay so far behind! We’re going to be late and it’s dangerous.”

Amelia took a deep breath and held in her tears. “Coming!”

The bench was empty. Her heart was heavy. “I know you do,” she said out loud before reaching for her mother’s hand.

09 April 2017

us the copycats


Isn’t it ironic? We, as writers, often struggle to find our unique voice. A voice which the world is willing to listen to (or read). A voice which is capable of conquering barriers and in a way leave the world slightly better. Yet, here in Medium, more often than not, I find my feed flooding with the same sort of posts.
  • How to be more productive.
  • 10 ways to start your morning.
  • How to be creative.
  • 10 things successful people do when waking up.
  • Is that cake making you sick?
  • How to gain more followers.
  • Ect. Ect.
If there is one type of post I dread since Marc & Angel Hack Life became popular, is posts about lists.

Yes, I hate lists.

I’ve tried writing them myself in order to give some structure to my thoughts, thus increase readership. I just could not put that final dot each and every time.

Why? Because I try to put myself in the reader’s perspective. As a reader, I want to read stories. I want to read why people are the way they are and achieve the things they achieve.

When I see a list, my brain immediately scans through the first part of each sentence or bullet point. So, if there is a list, chances are I will read the first 3 words, or header and skip to the next.

Why? Because it is most likely I already read them all in different ways, from different people, at different places. So, in the end, no, I do not read your list.

Here I am. Quite the novice in writing compared to many. Refusing to follow the crowd. Settling to a lower reader count.

Why? Because I know that those 10 readers did read my story. Because I do not write for the lazy. I do not write for the one in a hurry. I write for those who wish to know more. I write for those who wish to be inspired. I write to bring a bit of calm in the daily hectic life. For those who wish to experience something new.

I even have a role model. Here in Medium, your very own Hengtee Lim from Snippets. His stories are unique, they always bring me to the moment. I read them slowly and in peace. There is a zen-like rhythm to his words, and that feeling is exactly what I wish to convey in the end through my own writing.

Writing which brings you to the moment. Makes you appreciate the ordinary. Beautiful writing which makes a difference. Though I do not write every day, sometimes not every week, I still seek to write in meaningful ways.

To bring something new to the world, I seek to write with diversity.

05 April 2017

6:35


He was not an echo of lost love. Though that is how he would describe it.

They met one summer morning. She was new in town. He was the treat all around. It did not stop her. She saw his shadow, the hunching back, the words unspoken, hidden behind fragile glass. Though more than often, he was seen talking to another girl. Always another. Seductive. Tempting. Dangerous.

So she loved him. She loved him from afar. She loved him though she did not know she did. She loved him so, that he never noticed. She loved him so, that neither did she. Just enough. She was just the girl at the park, it was her truth.

“Excuse me, may I have the time?” It was her turn. She knew it would come. There were not, after all, many girls this early to run. Eventually, he would ask her the time. That same lame line he asked all the others.

“6:35,” she said. He was always on time. No matter the day. No matter the weather. No matter the light.

Such a waste of a line. And yet… her heart raced. Her stupid weak romantic heart raced like the imbecile it was. She couldn't help it. She hated it for that. She hated her own heart. But oh, she loved him from afar.

“Thank you, I’ve been losing track of time. It happens when it is too warm.”

It happens every time you ask. He’s trying. Perhaps I should answer. But why can’t I? Is something stuck in my throat?

“Well… see you around!” He resumed his jog. She resumed hers.

Stupid.

Stupid.

There were two more after her. Perhaps more she never saw. But it was like an addiction. She couldn't help it. She knew he could not be trusted. That is why she stayed away.

Summer went. Another summer came. There he was. Same old face.

“Hi! Sorry, I forgot my watch, can I have the time?”
Again? “6:35.”

“Oh, I need to pick up my phase then. Have we met before?” he stared at her with his not-so-innocent eyes while he bounced, keeping warm. She did not answer. She did not know what to answer.

“Tell me a story,” the words just flew out of her mouth. She tried to stop them. Too late.

He stared at her. Unsure. She knew. He stared not knowing what to answer. Her unforeseen words breaking his almost psychotic pattern. He reached behind his head. Making hi messy hair even messier. Stop it.

“Forget it,” she made a big mistake. She should not wait for an answer. She turned around and resumed her morning routine back home.

She met a guy. A nice guy. The type of nice that makes you wonder about a house and kids and putting on pretty dresses. The type of nice that makes life unbearably perfect. She met him at a bar. A typical, ordinary, perfect bar.

“Use it or lose it,” her friend advised her after the guy asked for her number.

She wondered if the guy at the park thought like that. She wondered if she should have given him her number. She wondered if he even remembers her. She realized she did not even know his name. Did he found a story for her? What kind? Was he still at the park?

They broke up shortly after. Not out of lack of commitment. But out of lack of use.

Use it or lose it.

Another summer colored the park back to a festivity of greens. She began to run again. This time she would not run away. There was no sign of him, not at 6:35, nor at 6:45. Maybe he stopped. Maybe he found the one. Maybe he was looking for the one all along. And she wasn’t it.

“I knew an old lady once,” the words stop her on track. The voice behind her sounded out of breath. Her heart skipped faster than the cardio was supposed to. But she did not turn around. Like a kitten, she was afraid he would run again. Oh, wait. That was her.

“She was small,” he laughed. And his laughter was like a song. “Her husband, just as old, was twice as long. But he took care of her every day. I would bring them the newspaper. Typical job for a sixteen-year-old. I was saving for new wheels. She sat on the porch, smiling and waving at everyone, including myself. Her husband always came out on time to pick the newspaper. Exact time, every day. 6:35. He brought her tea. He nodded at me and I would go on with my route. One day she was not there. He did not come out. But there was a cup of tea next to the empty chair. Still steaming hot…”

There was a prolonged silence. She waited.

And?
And?

But there was nothing else. Instead of doing the thing that a decent sane person would do, such as turn around and ask him to continue, she resumed her jog. He jogged behind her. But always remained behind. She wanted to turn around, just once, but she was afraid. Afraid that if she took just one look into his eyes, she would fall into his trap.

What the hell am I doing?
She must be crazy now. Running just like that, without a word. He must definitely, absolutely and undeniably believe her to be unquestionably crazy. What she did not know was that in his mind, the exact same thoughts were running wild and fast, just like her.

She ran away because she thought I was crazy.
Home sweet home. Rather not sweet after all. She tried to take him out of her head. This, however, proved an impossible task. He was following her, through the path, through the house, and into her dreams at night. The running never stopped.

And…

She wanted to know what was next.

Was she dead? Did he comfort the old man? Did he pay his respects? Why was she even thinking she is dead in the first place? Does she have such a grim look on life? Maybe it was a happy ending.

Maybe he knocked on the door to see what happened. Found the old couple happily laughing and making breakfast. Breaking out of the routine. They invited him in and they shared the morning. Forgetting all about his newspaper route. He probably got penalized for it.

But no… she knew life did not work like that. If anything, they were both probably dead. What if he cried when he found out? What if he cried when he told her and that is why he could not speak? She could not shake her guilt away. She returned to the park, though it was late. Very late. Twilight late.

I must be crazy.

She loved him. She loved him from afar. In that distance black hole between time and space. She loved him so that she did not know.

Of course she would not see him. Not like that. 6:35.

So she did the next best thing, she waiting for sunrise to begin.

Sunrise came. With the sun, the shadow of a man. 6:35. Just in time.

She realized she never saw him out of running clothes. Imagined a thousand things about him. When did he get up? What does he have for breakfast? Does he even like breakfast? What kind of job he does? How would she fit in his life?

Sunrise was upon them and the silent world deeper than their mutual silence.

He stared at her, alone on the bench.

She stared at him, alone in the world.

He approached her with a casual stroll. As if they knew each other decades ago.

“Hi,” he said.

“What happens next?” she asked instead.

He was not an echo. He was not a dream.

He was a comet.

A comet crossing a black hole through time and space.

She dragged him in. Like a black hole does a comet.

The echo of a dying star.

02 April 2017

Happy Endings


What happens when you believe? What if you choose to believe in a happy ending? The kind that sneaks in quietly in the night when you least expect it?

Sitting on the couch, eating your popcorn.
A thundering world outside.
A child asleep on the carpet next to the dog.
He, smiling at you and your silly thoughts.
And suddenly, like an epiphany, a revelation, you realize that happiness is that. At that precise moment.

You grasp onto it knowing that just like with other memories, it, will too, soon fade. Not making it any less precious. You gave up on writing down each of those moments, realizing that writing them will only take time away from them. And you breathe them in, like life’s elixir.

When you believe in such moments, that they are possible, the whole world suddenly becomes greater, kinder, perfect.

Though not everyone in it feels as happy. All that matters right now is your peace. The gentle beat of your happy heart. The desire to let this peaceful happiness expand. To reach across the wind to all those in the lack of it. Your chest expands, perhaps you shed a tear or two, in gratefulness. Because the words come out easily. Escaping your silent lips in the middle of a movie scene.

“Thank you.”

Thank you…

Thank you for the new words in a new world. For every surprise it entails since the first day the winter whisper kissed you hello.

For his love. The moments when he makes you laugh and yet you want to kill him and hug him at the same time. Reminding each other of old carefree childhood days. Because you found him and he found you. And together, you will be forever young.

For their support. Like ever-expanding families. You collect them one by one and each one becomes just as dear as the other. And though they will never know nor realize it, they play an important part in how you reach towards the life you want. With them. For them. To be able to be together.

For your future, your past, your present. For the accomplishments together. And the fact that just because you were brave to wonder and believe, all your dreams became reality.

And you write words of love and laughter. Words sustaining your empire… and you did it. You are where you always wanted to be. And there is nothing else more precious than realizing you have accomplished that happy ending. Now it’s your turn to write and help others reach it as well.

All is good.

All is perfect.

And you are happy.

And you are grateful.
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