Walking down the memory lane of 2016…

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It’s  December 30th 2016 in Indonesia, I think a proper time for me to post this. Why today and not tomorrow when the year truly ends?

Because today is the most precious day in my life since three years ago. Today in 2013 was when my dearest grandfather answered the call of his creator, Allah SWT. My grandfather was a veteran soldier, he spent his youth fought for Indonesia’s independence and after that he still fought for provincial rebellion in his hometown. He always recalled that day as one of his most precious memories, when his captain prized his quick wits and go to the river to catch fishes for his starving brothers or when he got his medal after helping his brothers sneak out into a safer route–back then they were accustomed to fight with guerilla tactics where extensive knowledge of forest’s terrain is a must.

So you see, I was so enamored by my grandfather’s live that even now after three years I still got misty eyes and knotted hearts when I remembered him. Part of the reason I became a writer were also because of the stories my grandfather told me when I lay my head on his knee, with his gnarled hand softly stroked my hair and his smoky breath pervade my nostrils. He make the story of his adventure seemed so vivid and kicking I would dream it for days. But back then I couldn’t meet him as much as I want, because we lived in different provinces and my parents have to safe a lot of money just to buy us tickets to get there.

Not until this year when I dived into PitchWars did I realize that the way my grandfather related his story covered in a genre called magical realism and the stories I’ve wrote so far were also heading there. So this year I wanted to thank my grandfather and the PitchWars team for showing me that I’m not crazy for attempting something beyond normal.

Although the first half of the year opened with string of upsetting news for my family, the latter part–Alhamdulillah–ended with some great news. I got two new members in my family this year too–my nephew, Gasya and my brother in law, Ammar. In work level as a public official, I transported into a new office–the Plannning and Development Division–my new work environment filled with laughter and quirky bosses. ^^

I also put an end to another first draft this year–a story currently titled “The Time Bender’s Protege”–and making new edits for my PitchWars subs “One Hope”. I also tried to finish the story I brewed in NaNoWriMo 2016–which I then shelved because my new work demanded a huge attention. So I guess one of my 2017 resolution will be to put “THE END” in the last page of this three stories’ polished and complete version.

During 2016 I found a lot of friend to share laughter, cheeky lines, rages of agreement and swoon worthy moments. From the friends I found because of we shared common fave actors and dramas, to writing advisers and amazonian knights who showed me that literary world was just and always encouraging no matter where you came from and what language you spoke.

So if I have to sum up my 2016, I will do it with one word…

ALHAMDULILLAH.

And for 2017 that is only a day away, despite all the gloomy foreshadowing events appeared from around the world in 2016–particularly in literary world–I am hoping for a brighter horizon, changeable perceptions, and answering prayers (especially from many POC, marginalized and Own Voices writers).outta-here-duck

 

NaNoWriMo 2016 Day One

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At the beginning, I wanted to post this in essay style (words cluttered inside paragraphs), yet lately, I’ve reading A LOT of Chinese novels, and I guessed it rubbed on me somehow.
Since Mandarin and English aren’t my first language, please pardon my mistakes—which I knew will be plenty (grammars, typos, structures). I’ll edit this all in 2nd draft—of course after NaNoWriMo 2016 over. There are hundreds of Chinese novels’ translators out there, but this year the first translator who gave me that ba-dump ba-dump are these angels of hui3r, check them out if you have time.

I don’t know why it turned out this way. But I heard once that life is stranger than fiction. And in this world of magical realism, reality is stranger than magic.
I also don’t know if it’ll retain this form throughout this month so I should warn you I’m really an experimental writer.  Be my beta readers by commenting below, I welcomed you with smiles.
And so here it is my NaNoWriMo 2016 project (if you want to know what happened in here, please check this rough introduction ^u^).

One last thing, this is a work in progress please DO NOT copy/share/save everything you read here before you got my permission, be a good reader and an advocate but NOT an opportunist or worst, a pirate.

NaNoWriMo 2016 Day 1

1007 words accomplished from 50.000 words goal

ATHENA
(A TALE OF AN IMPUDENT DAUGHTER)

Chapter One

AWAKEN part 1

That life was nothing but a fleeting dream
The dream you got as you laid under a palm tree
On your way to the place you called home
After a short detour to the golden land
With the scalding sand inside your shoes
Air so dry it hurt to just breath

As you slowly drifted in
Floating comfortably inside your space
Then you lifted into that void abyss

Her breathing softly filled your ears
Her scent filled your heart
At the edge of her feet
Looking down as if paralyzed

That face
That pale lifeless face

Somehow inside those seven anguish years
Your regret turned to love
Her scent became your ozone

And the eyes
Eyes so purple it almost black
Staring back at you silently
Hollow
Soulless
Distant

And at that moment your world halt
The raging madness inside your heart
The siren wailed outside your space
But you’re feet planted deep

A minute

Two minutes

Three minutes

A force descent on your shoulder
Swiftly you got pushed aside

Yet, that piercing purple eyes
Your face inside it
The You in her head
Your body reflected back
You’re nothing but a dot
You’re nothing but a trick of light

Will she ever forgive you?
If she knew,
If she realized,
Will she ever forgive you?

A hand on your shoulder
A palm on your chest
A voice drifted into your mind

Let go
There’s nothing you can do here
Let go

Deep down you knew
The voice tell the truth
Indeed nothing you couldn’t do
But your heart
That lump of meat you thought had died
Beating inside your body
Dancing inside your diaphragm

It’s hurt to let go
It’s painful to walk away

But the figures around the bed
And the Him who stand in front of you
Slowly
Surely
You turned your back

Let the anguish swallowed your soul
Let the tears drown your soul
There’ll be time
There’ll be chance

You just had to wait
********************************************************************
Her skin is translucent
Her bluish vein beating softly under
The warmth replaced the constant cold
She had awaken
Floating white robe shield your vision
Shouts and rapid exchanges drifted on your head

Your other half looked at you
Her lips trembled in her face
The tears swam in her eyes
But the light inside
Shine brighter than a thousand suns

Your knees folded under you
Both your hand in front of your chest
Your forehead met the earth
In repeated gestures you rose then succumb
Your lips murmured nothing but echoes
Deep inside your soul
What your lips couldn’t say
You pictured it in your mind

Thank you
Alhamdulillah
Subhanallah

Rose succumbed repeat
Rose succumbed repeat

Until someone patted your shoulder
Then you got up and looked above you
The flailing white robe so still it’s eerie
The face so stern you thought it was a statue
And slowly his lips moved
Your blood still rushing inside your head
You didn’t hear what he said before
And slowly his lips curved

Her vitals is fine
But she didn’t respond to our call
We just have to wait and see . . .
Congratulations

The words floating into your mind
Is fine
Is fine
Is fine

That day your universe reset
Seven years of waiting
Seven years of hoping
Seven years of praying
That day your universe reformed

The white robe walked around you
Carrying a hint of tobacco and patience
His glasses reflected the light above
His smile deep and sincere
His palm strong and free
His shoes clicked on the floor
Rapid
Resolute
Merry
Away afar abscond

Your other half dashed forward
Her hand reached down in shaky move
As it softly brush her hair
The figure on the bed opened her eyes
Warmth
Wonder
Alive
Strange

Eyes so purple it almost black
What happened to her brown eyes
They said eyes are windows to the soul
Then what did it meant

Your other half’s voice floated softly
Baby
My baby
Thank you for coming back
Thank you for remained alive

And in that instant you too realized
The figure on the bed had change
Your other half had change
Even you had change
But it’s better than the other way

Seven years of wondering
Seven years of trying
Seven years of resisting
Changes were inevitable
Changes were welcome
Changes were better

Slowly you released the breath you hold
Slowly you ripped the shackles you endured
Slowly you loosen the burden you carried
Baby
Our baby
Thank you for coming back
Thank you for remained alive
**********************************************************************
The news came in mid-October
As the thunder struck down from the vast dark sky
It was a joke
You said to yourself
It wasn’t real
You convinced yourself

But the blooming smile in front of you
The light shone in their eyes
This time you know they did not lie
So you got up abruptly
Kicking your chair to the ground
Their breath gasped inside the cardboard walls

You didn’t care
Your head filled with rage
Your heart filled with grief

Didn’t care
Didn’t expected
Didn’t wanted
Yet, the truth laid there

Inside your own space
3 x 4 square meters filled with damp air
The neighbors filled the night with dangdut music
Merry seductive notes blasted to your space

 

But in your heart there’s nothing but grief
But in your head there’s nothing but rage

Golden gilded frame on the wooden table
The only luxury you retained from your past
Seven years of hating
Seven years of cursing
Seven years of grieving

You hoped everything had changed
You thought everything had ceased
But smiles on their faces
The happiness in their voices
The stars in their gazes
Like a thousand blades ruptured your flesh
Like a million flames burnt your skin

They never aware of how you felt
They never cared of how you hurt
All their love went to the princess
Now the princess returned
Your palm curled in distaste

They said miracles happened in full moon
They didn’t say about your nemesis came back to life.

**********************************************************************

This is the end of part one, I planned to post this yesterday but somehow the internet signals refuse to cooperate with me. So I waited until I got to the office–with the power of free wifi clear in mind–thankfully I can finally post this.

Day one was over, twenty-nine days to go. See you again tomorrow

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Edits as of March 2017,

I didn’t have time to continue this because my work demand piling up lately. That’s why I plan to take this into Camp NaNo in April, hopefully by then my work demand will ease up a bit and I have time to focus on working this.

Until then… Thank you so much.

What I’ve been doing lately! (@0@)

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And so aside for walking through the memory lane *coughRESEARCHcough* back to the day when I was a Cassie (Keep The Faith!!!), I’ve been swamped with Day job. Until yesterday I encountered a tweet post and decided to take part in it.

It’s an open invitation to take part during the month of NaNoWriMo as a WCNV qualified writer in Voices on FIYAH. Since I think I do have some experience in the first two, I decided to pledge myself. YEYYY

For the last two years I’ve been active in Twitter , I’ve noticed about a rising demand for equality in literary/film/drama/representation/politics/ANYTHING for People Of Colors (POC). If you befriend me on twitter, you’ll know I am also a POC. And so, naturally … I join the good cause. ^o^

That aside, currently I am also juggling some beta reading and CPing for my writers group. Add my dayjob as a civil servant and working on my #PitMad submission, I really wish there are more than 24-hours a day. So that’s it.

NaNoWriMo will start in four days, whose as excited as me?!

(>o<)

 

 

Side note:

The picture above is of Kim JaeJoong from JYJ (he was a former member of TVXQ, with their ginormous fandom called Cassiopeia/Cassie). Youtube is a perfect starter to check out their songs if you have time, for then you’ll understand why I became a Cassie.

An Introduction to My NaNoWriMo 2016 Project (ATHENA)

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“Athena” will be my NaNoWriMo 2016 Project, as of now I’m still in outlining (plot) stage-I’m a plantsing btw. With my NaNoWriMo 2016 Project I plan to post until I reach the goal, and then after that I’ll revise privately (though depends on my mood, I will probably post the “upgrade” version in this blog ^o^).

The idea of this story actually swam on my mind since 2007 but didn’t actually working on it until this year. Since I’m an ADD, I decided to put down my commitment in writing this story by POSTING it here. Depends on my time, come Nov.1 the start of “Athena” will be chapter one or prologue (still undecided about which one).

NaNoWriMo will take place through the whole November. I’ve won my NaNoWriMo 2015 project  and plan to do the same with this year too. Wish me Luck ^o^.

Below, is a little bit introduction of ‘ATHENA”:

Synopsis

She was supposed to die in the age of thirteen but she didn’t. Her parents supposed to split up when she was thirteen but they didn’t. Her brother and sister supposed to be orphan when she was thirteen but they weren’t.One event, one sacrifice put her in the Death’s list.

This is the story of a girl who was named as the greatest goddess in Greek mythology, and her journey to befitting her name.

ATHENA is a retelling of an infamous Indonesian folktale “Malin Kundang” meet with “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. (If you follow me in twitter, you’ve probably notice that it’s also my #MuslimSquadWL)

Excerpt

I’m not afraid of snakes,

But I’m afraid of it’s venoms.

I’m not afraid of tears,

But I’m afraid of loneliness.

I’m not afraid of death,

But I’m afraid of pain.

I’m not afraid of being ashamed,

But I’m afraid about my parents.

I’m not afraid of loving you,

But I’m afraid of losing you.

I’m not afraid of life,

Cause I know God can take me anytime.

Since ATHENA will be a first draft, please be considerate over mistakes and mishaps i.e: grammars, typos, structures etc. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to reach the 50.000 words, so mistakes bound to happen. If you don’t like it or have any suggestions/critiques just comment in each posts (do you sense my goal? Yep. I invite you to be my beta readers by commenting @o@).

And so, let me regroup my strength and see you in 7 days.

Adieu…