184. Mathilda and Joseph

It’s 9.30A.M., and no work has been done since 3.30P.M. on Tuesday.

I was out with a friend some weeks ago, and we were talking about life and work – mostly work, though. It was my second week of doing proper, responsible, adult things, and it was the week that out of sheer crippling boredom, I wrote 3 new stories.

Mr. Dahl’s story of Mathilda came to mind – the girl who was so intelligent that when her mental powers could not be channelled anywhere, it manifested as telekinesis. I realized that in less than a month of working, I’ve written more than I did in the whole first half of 2013.

(can’t say the same for the second half, on account of NaNoWriMo)

It turns out that being bored to metaphoric death was the best thing that could have happened to me as a writer. With nothing to distract me, all my energies were directed towards writing, writing, and more writing. My ex-boss remarked that it appears I have gotten a full-time writing job after all.

Considering the volume of work I complete versus the volume of writing I’ve done, I guess that’s true.

(I just found out that Miss Shelley, of “Frankenstein” fame, also has a story titled “Mathilda”. It’s about a girl who has an incestuous relationship with her father. Parents, please, for the love of all things good and innocent, do not confuse one for the other)

Last week at the Planet Shakers’ conference, the story of the biblical Joseph (in Genesis) became the basis for one of the messages. Like how messages based on Joseph’s life always turn out, it was about trusting God despite insurmountably bleak circumstances. It resonated deeper and more profoundly in me than it used to, and I certainly could relate to the despair of a dream being impossibly out of reach.

(“What power would hell have if those imprisoned here would not be able to dream of heaven?” -The Sandman)

But there was a ray of hope. In a turn of events, Joseph found himself working in Pharoah’s court, and quickly became the second most powerful man in the empire, and possibly single-handedly saved his family from starvation from his position. From the inception of the dream (heh, heh) to its fulfilment, though, was a whooping 19 years.

I hope I don’t have to wait that long to see the fulfilment of mine.

Yesterday, I created a note on facebook to celebrate the 20th short story posted on this blog (“The Long Road Home”, if you’re wondering). In the little introduction that I wrote to the list, there was a sentence that surprised me when I wrote it:

“What can a writer do but keep writing?”

It calls back to the promise I made last year: that no matter where I find myself, no matter how hectic things get, I will always be writing stories. Not only because I want to, but also because I cannot help it. The storyteller in me has become too strong to restrain, too big to starve. If the storyteller dies, I think he might take me with him.

So here I am: still writing, with all the time in the world to do just that.

You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done. [Genesis 50:20]


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