Invoking the Muse – Ila

Invoking the Muse – Ila Kandasamy ‘muses’

This was an impressive piece of note by Ila Kandaswamy who lives in from chennai. Check out the article here @ freshlimesoda. For those who are lazy as me to follow the link, I’ve copied the note. Truly Realistic !!

You are a young writer, you have the silver chords of hope, and you show the promise of a few admirable phrases. You have just fallen in love with writing and you subsist with an unknown faith. What drives you is the beauty of words, and the how distinctly they blend, and how with a little of your effort you can create pieces of elegance that touches someone somewhere very deeply. In the beginning though, you are your audience.

Someday you want to take it all seriously, you decide to write for the world out there, you want to play God, between all your tears and trauma you want to create an impressive work of art. And like millions of others, you want to learn how other writers have done it all. That is where it begins, the downward fall, the decline, and the persistent kinky restlessness. All that you learn about the process of writing through the featured interviews of gorgeous authors from the Sunday magazines reveals sundry obsessions. One writer swears by always writing longhand in foolscap paper in fluorescent orange colours. “And the lighting in the room: it must always be natural lighting. I am averse to any kind of artificial lighting,” she pouts. You try to reconcile, to understand her whims, and you try to implement that in your life. It never works out, and you forget her for a while and you start wondering about other ideas. There is a balding author, the one who spins out a novel a year and he avers by red wine and his Dictaphone. You can’t afford either, so you take solace in another man who recommends three litres of coffee per day at four a.m. in the morning. After weeks of this madness, your body has taken the blows — it refuses to cooperate. But nothing stops you from that best form of flattery – imitation. So you religiously try a hundred and one recipes for writing, and then it something else captures you – the lure of the exotic. You begin drinking masala chais and start worshipping your muse with incense sticks and ritual gets hold of you. It is a kind of insanity, this relying on wearing your lime-green dress every time you sit down to write. Voices deep within mock at you. Sarcasm raises its ugly head between all your sacred rites and ceremonies, but you cling on to your methodical insanities. You forget the fact that the word “author” has the same root as the word “authority”- and that by submitting to dogma, you have lost control.

In so many ways, it is the greatest loss.