Thursday, January 5, 2012

Phid Back

My last post may have been a little different from the rest but man did it make for some interesting comments and discussions. For the record, it took me over a month to write it for the very reason many of you reacted so strongly to it: it was so serious and I'm usually upbeat on this blog. But as the great Meera Syal titled her 2005 BBC mini series, Life Isn't All Ha Ha Hee Hee. Shit happens. As the Americans say, it is what it is.

In writing this novel, the line between fiction and myself is blurry at the best of times. It works both ways. I use so much of my own experiences in the writing:  vivid childhood memories, the aesthetics that I experienced last year in Karachi, some of my own neuroses (those are particularly fun to evoke and splatter onto the page). But on the flip side, some of the scenes I've created have come alive to me. I feel like they've really happened- like in the real world. When I go to Vancouver, I can tell you where Katya and her mother had a huge fight, the exact spot at Kits Beach where she ...oops, that was close. You'll see.

Similarly, the line between fiction and reality in that last blog was a wavering one. Everything was essentially true: it's been a rough ride. But I will confess that as I wrote that last image of me and my frost bitten hand, etc, I was sitting in my backyard among my fully bloomed roses with the California sun beating down on me. Sometimes, it's fun to be a drama queen.

Then there's the feed back I've received (sorry about the title, but ever since a certain someone called  me Phinomenal, my name has been too much fun to play with). The comments within the blog, the personal emails assuring me everything will be okay. I've even heard from third parties about what some of you said. Even though a writer is supposed to write only for herself, for her art, not for fame or accolades, it feels good knowing there are so many of you out there with me on this roller coaster.

I took a week off over the holidays, packing away all evidence of my writing life. The most strenuous thing I did was tackle a new knitting pattern. That blog was actually very cathartic; it felt good to get it all out and leave it all behind.

Yes,  it's only been three working days of 2012 but I feel recharged and rearing to finish this mother- this novel (you're all so sensitive, I don't know if you can handle a potty mouthed Phi).