JUNE UPDATE

Photo by John T on Unsplash

Back in Singapore! A quick note – I think I’ve decided to make blogging at least a bimonthly thing. It’s something to ground my anxieties, to chart my progress, to keep track of my thoughts. And after all it’s kind of therapeutic to just rant/blog once in a while. Not everything has to be a poem.

Anyway…

The last update I mentioned submitting for Manuscript Bootcamp. Good news (for anyone following this development in my life)I made it!

look ma it’s me (third from the right)

Very fortunate and blessed to have had my manuscript selected by the Judges, Koh Tai Ann, Aaron Maniam and Conchitina Cruz!

I mentioned last update that I started to hate my work a little after having had to criticise and work with it for months. That’s true to some extent, but for the longest time (since January, anyway) I was always suffering from a bit of Imposter Syndrome – like, who am I to be writing anyway? Bad thoughts like that.

That sense of being undeserving alleviated a little last month. You see, my exchange programme in Dublin had just ended and I was starting my month-long solo trip / farewell to Europe. Throughout the course of that journey, I had my trusty yellow journal with me.

specifically, this one

I had been given that journal at the end of my first year of University for being an ‘outstanding’ member of one of my clubs at NUS Law – specially the Law Students’ International Relations Committee (or club, for some) – and since then I’ve been using it as my writing journal. I bring it to all my events and workshops, I get autographs in there, I jot down whatever seems interesting. In the midst of a months-long writer’s block, I flipped through the book and then I saw the title of my manuscript on the very first page – then I realised. I had been working on this manuscript for years, not months, just not in the way I foresaw it.

After all, I had given up the last edition, deeming my work too weak to submit. But have I not been working on those pieces since then? Have I not been seeking opportunities to better myself, to better my writing? And isn’t getting in now a sign that some of that effort has paid off?

Granted, while that realisation gave me some modicum of confidence, it would be far from me saying that I had rid myself of the imposter syndrome. Maybe it’s something we all have to live with. I’ve been suffering from a writer’s block this past month. Not just because I couldn’t write, but I felt like I couldn’t write pieces of quality – but now I’m thinking who’s to say what’s the proper ‘quality’ I need? My pride? My self-esteem? My fear?

I’m still trying to better myself, both as a person and as a writer. But I think if there’s been any takeaway from all of this, it’s that I’m slowly coming to terms with my flaws. I’m having coffee with them at a cafe on the Seine, I’m eating gelato with them after dark. I’m interviewing them and publishing all their gaffes and slip-ups. I’m bringing them to bed.



Comments 3

  1. Pingback: Manuscript Bootcamp – Thoughts and Reflections – ugly stage

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