2014, achievement, debut story, Diaries, fasting, food, hunger, Iftaar, Motivation, novella, publishing, ramadan, Ramadan Diaries 2014: Day 11 - To carry on, reading, test, to carry on, worship, writing, Yomi Sugi
It can be a lot, reading books non-stop, one after the other. You can suffer from headaches and can be sick of looking at books for a little while. But I’m in a position where I can’t allow myself to ‘feel’ this. I shall give it a name: Yomi Sugi syndrome, which literary means ‘reading too much’ in Japanese. It sounds better as an ailment in foreign words 😀
But half of my day was spent yet again of dealing with Student Finance (SF), and just when I thought it would be smooth sailing from today onwards, more problems crop up and in my fever from Yomi Sugi I still spent the latter part of the day reading. Because I had spent so much time on the phone and online dealing with SF I needed to catch up on lost time. And its not even that Yomi Sugi syndrome is something that is all of the mind – it is physical. So when my eyes could no longer take looking at words on a page, I went down to help with making iftaar. I was only on fruit duty today because my brother had volunteered to make pasta! After having biryani for 3 days in a row, we needed a change of carbs.
Mum told him earlier that she’s on strike and is completely leaving him in charge of making iftaar. Although it all happened on time, he was late to come down and begin, leaving him with only the option of making noodles instead of pasta, Ko-Lee stye
Also, we had left over pakuras (those suckers never seem to finish do they?!) which I was left in charge of to grill. But that’s when I chose to leave it on low-medium heat and finish off my book. But when I smelt something burning, it was already too late. I quickly put my book far away from me and got an earful from mum about not watching the poor things on the grill. I can’t really use this in my defence, but all I can say is that I needed to read, even if it resulted in casualties.
I have plans to get my novella published asap. So a friend and I are working on it as quickly as possible. But I got news today of getting work for a month but at the cost of not only half of my summer, but also my preparation for the PGCE. It will mean I have to get most of my work done on the weekends, including the polishing up of the novella for publication. This naturally puts me under a very tight schedule, one which I am tempted to accept, even though it might cost me more than just my free time. In short, I might have to put my writing on hold!
I have been quite secretive about the novella so let me tell you a bit about it:
Title: CAIRO STREET
Genre: mystic realism/slice of life
Synopsis: The Arab Revolution is spreading across countries tired of dictators for ruler and it just so happens that Mahad is caught up in it all. His family in London think he’s missing and his uncle in Egypt is too politically active for him not to want to get involved. But the only person who knows he’s in danger is his twin sister Jameelah. Their connection is ultimately what could save him. Set at a time in which Egypt is politically unstable, this story looks at suffering from an angle that is far, yet very near.
This novella aims to tell a story shared by many people around the world. Based on true events, this is a story of how there are always casualties in a battle for freedom, but not all those who suffer ever know what’s coming.
I hoped to have it done by September, but that might have to change to December. We shall see!
For me, this is my first project to be actually ready for the public eye so it has been hard working on it. When I first started it 3 years ago I had trouble writing; writers block reared its ugly head and I struggled to get work done. And although I could have published it 1 year ago, it was actually meant to be published this year. To carry on with this novella was my way of finalising one chapter of my life. And until I do this, I feel I cannot move on properly to other pieces. This is what has kept me working on it, on and off though it has been, for so long.
I woke up really hungry. I felt much weaker and had to go down on all fours whilst walking up the stairs. So all I could do was block it out and go about my day. I can’t complain, how can I?! With all those who suffer from hunger daily and perhaps all their lives, my pangs were nothing. Although I was fasting and couldn’t break it, I was happy knowing I was suffering if only an ounce of what the poor suffer from. Not to feel proud that I could empathise, but so I could be humbled.
To end this rather long post: what I was reminded of today is my ability (which I am proud of :)) to be able to finish something once I start it. To carry on. To me, leaving something half done is the same as leaving a picture half coloured in. I don’t want my life to have patches of colour, but I want it ‘filled in’ properly. People remember those who have accomplished something in their lives. Now, I don’t need to have recognition from anyone in order to see I have accomplished something. My own knowledge is sufficient, and perhaps those close to me. And ultimately, that is the meaning of life: to accomplish things and know that you are satisfied with those achievements.
Ramadan is all about accomplishments. To change for the better, to learn, to give alms, to remember Allah and so much more. But the true test will come after this month passes and that is our ability to carry on being ‘good’.