My Past, Myself, Preeti, Writing

My Writing Sucks: A Blog Post

Janss Steps, Royce Hall in background, UCLA
Image via Wikipedia

For the first time since I started on my UCLA extension classes, I am wondering what made me think I could actually write.  This is the first time also I took only one class, and yet it feels as if my entire certificate for creative non fiction depends on it.  The class is for personal essays, how to write one and get published.  We have only written 5 essays but it feels as if I have written 50.  The worse part: my writing absolutely, without any doubt in my mind, sucks.  I mean it’s awful.  Instead of showing, I am telling. Instead of describing people, I am using stock characters.  And grammar? Forget about it, it looks like I stopped around 8th grade.

At first, it was easy to blame the class (teacher sucks, essays too general, no lectures, etc) and then I realized that the issue really was me.  My first topic was about my grandfather, the second about my mom and sisters opening up Ziba, the third about my difficult writing, and the fourth and fifth about cancer.  Each topic emotionally loaded for me, but more importantly not really dealt with at the time so as I began writing, I lose myself into that time period so the writing resembles that of a child.

Writing about Ziba and my dad;s drinking is just plain hard mainly because I have such mixed emotions about it.  When Ziba started, I was at UCLA and then Law school and I was 13 when my dad drank and it has had a powerful effect on me.  The main reason its hard because Ziba is in my lifeblood and I love my dad so much now, more so because he is one of the few people I know in my life who did a 180 turn in life to save his family.  I have so much respect, pride and love for him that it’s hard to look at a time when I felt nothing for him.  As for Ziba, it;s just hard to write about it because I have the guilt that I could have done so much more and that perhaps I didn’t have much to do with it for it to be successful.  In a way, maybe I am riding it coattails, but then I see my family and they just don’t see it like that and won’t let me either.

Finally, my love and cancer. This part’s the hardest just because it was so recent but more importantly it involved someone I love so completely that it’s hard to imagine being without her.  So here I am, in a personal essay class where all the essays are so personal that they don’t mean much to others because I havent dealt with my own issues, and thus the writings are full of meandering thoughts and emotions that frankly aren’t very fun to read if I was totally honest with myself.  Let’s hope I figure it out soon before I truly feel like a failure.  I am open to suggestions 🙂

5 thoughts on “My Writing Sucks: A Blog Post”

  1. Sanjay, my dear friend,

    If I told you that you are being too hard on yourself, then I am sure your ego will jump in and give you more excuses as to why you deserve that fate. So instead I will tell you, you are right. Your writing sucks and you should pity yourself. Also that apart from this facade of yourself, there is so much more.

    It helps at times like these to expand, especially when our emotions and thoughts command us to enclose. Think of Uncle and Aunty and the times that were challenging for them. Don’t you think they had moments of self pity/self loathing? We all do, so realize you aren’t alone.

    Just like you they did the best they could at the time. I think we live int he past so much because we keep wishing it was different. The moment we accept it as it was, is the moment we get peace and let go. (Something I picked up from Oprah’s farewell show)

    It is easy for us to give compassion and love and care to others, but we forget we need it for ourselves from our own selves. Questions your fears and get to the root and forgive all including yourself. Yes it take time and is a process. Perhaps taking it as a journey, rather then a destination, it will flow.

    As “sucky” as your writing maybe, it tells a story. We all have our stories and they are there to be shared. We learn, grow and evolve from this shared experience. And yes even one person like you, has the power to influence another just by being You. Whether its a positive or negative one, that is a power you yield.

    Please excuse the flaws in my writing…I’m working on it being less “sucky” too 🙂

    May you be free from suffering, may you be at peace.

    Yosh

    Like

  2. The more you write the better you’ll get.
    Also the writing is never as bad as it seems. It may seem horrid now, but in time you will gain the knowledge to flip a few things around and find what was in your head is now on the page

    Like

  3. Sanjay, my dear friend,

    If I told you that you are being too hard on yourself, then I am sure your ego will jump in and give you more excuses to why you deserve that fate. So instead, I will tell you, you are right. Your writing sucks and you should pity yourself. Also, that apart from this façade of yourself, there is so much more.

    It helps at times like this to expand, especially when our emotions and thoughts command us to enclose. Think of Uncle and Aunty and the times that were challenging for them. Don’t you think they had moments of self-pity/self loathing? We all do, so realize you aren’t alone.

    Just like you, they did the best they could at the time. I think we live in the past so much because we keep wishing it was different. The moment we accept it as it was, is the moment we get peace and let go.
    (Something I picked up from Oprah’s farewell.)

    It is easy for us to give compassion and love and care to others, but we forget we need it for ourselves from our selves. Question your fears and vulnerabilities to get to the root and forgive all including yourself. Yes it takes time and is a process. Perhaps taking it as a journey rather than a destination, it will flow.

    As “sucky” as your writing maybe it tells a story. We all have our stories and they are there to be shared. We learn, grow and evolve from this shared experience. And yes even one person like you, has the power to influence another just be being you. Whether it’s a positive or negative one, that is a power you yield.

    Please don’t mind the flaws in my writing, I am still in the process of improving my own “sucky” writing .

    May you be free from suffering, may you be at peace.

    Like

    1. It’s just that I was surprised that I was having such an “easy” class, especially since I changed to the certificate for creative non-fiction. It’s just scary to know that I have a lot of unresolved issues to deal with and perhaps the idea my writing may not be up to par is just too unnerving.

      Like

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