It is strange how inspiration works. Almost like magic, when it wraps you up in its luminous energy there is very little in this world that seems out of reach. And yet there are other times when you look for it for hours and days and months and years … and find precious little.
For me, inspiration came in two waves. The first was in the form of a childhood friend who chose to drop by one weekend. We chatted late into the evenings, about schooldays, dreams and wishes. Those conversations reminded me of so many lost ideas, missed chances. I thought it would only bring me heartache, but somehow it left me feeling stronger. Every day after that I tried to invest a little more time into projects that I had passed over, pursuing paths that had been ignored. I started thinking of ideas for a story that I had always wanted to write.
That alone did not take me very far however. Although I did mull over a few ideas and scribbled a few paragraphs, my mind was still floating aimlessly. Until one fine day, I found myself immersed in a certain series geared towards children and young adults. I loved everything about it – the elaborate plotlines, the true to life and diverse characters, the vibrant and fluid storytelling. Then came the unfortunate ending that broke my heart. I thought it denied the series a loftier, more perfect ending that it clearly deserved. It left me feeling betrayed. I felt resentment, I felt anger. After having spent a few weeks in misery at having been denied the perfect world of my imagination, I realized something. I realized that while I had the right to be dismayed, the author had the right to end his story in whichever way he pleased. If I really wanted to have a world created in a way that I found perfect, I would have to create it myself, and not simply seek it in works of others.
The following day, during my lunch break, I wrote four paragraphs where my two central characters meet for the first time. By that night I had completed a chapter, and by the end of the week I had a plotline for the whole story. I had embarked on an epic journey, a science fiction book series of five parts – it was going to be long and hard, but I vowed to endure.