Monday, March 18, 2019

Monday Journal #10 & #11

I’m back! Dua minggu terakhir saya seperti sedang menaiki roller-coaster yang tidak henti-hentinya mengejutkan saya dengan tanjakan dan turunan yang curam. Namun begitu, hari ini merupakan awal dari minggu yang baru dan eventually saya bersyukur atas segala apa yang terjadi. Saya manusia biasa yang bisa jatuh terpuruk, dan di saat-saat itulah saya hanya mampu berkata lirih, “Ya Allah, I want Your justice”. Sungguh, saya sama sekali tidak merasa pantas mendapatkan keadilan dari-Nya, tetapi jika bukan kepada-Nya saya mengadu, kepada siapa lagi?

Semuanya berawal pada hari Selasa, 5 Maret. Sesuatu terjadi hingga membuat saya melupakan ulang tahun adik saya. Sebenarnya saya sempat menulis sedikit pada hari Kamis, 8 Maret; tapi saya tidak sanggup melanjutkannya. Berikut nukilannya.

As a girl who promises to always see the sunshine even in the darkest storm, first thing first let me say “Alhamdulillah” for everything that happened during last week*. Finally, my prayer has been answered, and once again I have to remind myself that this is the best thing that Allah gives to me right now. He knows what I don’t know, He sees what I don’t see. “Innaka anta ‘allamul ghuyub”.

*Karena saya bermaksud mem-post tulisan ini pada hari Senin, 11 Maret.

However, there were some good things and bad things about the ‘accident’. The bad thing was: sadly, I didn’t ‘celebrate’ Nyepi in Bali, and I had to cancel my plan to go to Singaraja. I am glad that my travel buddy (found her in Facebook group, OMG!) was so understanding; but now I have to set another time to go to Singaraja. Last week was perfect for me because my ngaji student also having their Nyepi holiday, and my weekends ahead will be full with teaching, writing, and preparing Ubud Food Festival. And then Ramadan comes! MasyaAllah.
Terus aku kapaaan liburannyaaaaa.

The good thing, he launched ‘the bomb’ on Tuesday. That day my team were busy announcing the theme for Ubud Writers & Readers Festival 2019, and we were so ecstatic. His message burst out among the positive feedback; yet still my face got pale instantly, my hands and feet felt so cold, then I ran to my office backyard… crying for one hour straight. Some of my office mates came and hugged me, then they asked me to book the ticket right away. They encouraged me to go home because it will be too depressing for me to be in Bali at Nyepi. As the bus ticket has been sold out (of course), I bought any earliest train ticket from Banyuwangi to Malang, and searched for information on how I could get out from Bali before the gates closed on Wednesday evening. I am truly blessed to have my office mates, my boss, and my General Manager because they were like, “it’s okay, we can take care of this, you may take care of yourself”. So yeah, even though it took me almost 36 hours, I eventually arrived at my home in Malang. Alhamdulillah!!!

I am sad and shock that the decision has been made at last. Me and the guy I was in love with will no longer have any chance to be together, even though I begged Allah for giving me time to pray until Ramadan. But this is the outcome that makes it easier for me to move forward. I chose to let go a best friend than losing myself, and I am happy to do it. 

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Readers Who Write: My Earliest Piece of Creative Writing

Today I am going to bring you for some throwbacks as the question is…

What is the earliest piece of creative writing you can remember starting? Was it a poem, short story, novel, etc.? What was it about? Did you finish the first draft?

I started journaling when I was so little. My mom works full time and usually will be home at 4-5PM, so she asked me to write any activities that I do before she arrives. Basically my diary contained with story of my day, including what I have learned at school and the television series that I watch while waiting for her.

Oh that’s not creative writing. Right. Hahaha. Okay so my first piece of writings was… poem. Yes, I wrote a lot of it! Long ones. I joined some writing competitions during elementary school, and there were times I got rejected because my poem was too long. I don’t remember who were my muses, but I remember I wrote a lot about politics. Iyaaa, beneraaan. I wrote about how we can be a better Indonesian citizen, stuffs like that.

Some years later, I switched to essays because it gives me more space to express my thoughts. Yet, my words were ‘flowery’ when Taufik Ismail read my writing in a competition, he said I should write poems instead. But I never really learn how to write, those years my writings were so raw it came straight from my mind and unedited. My library teacher as the editor only helped picking up the correct words from Kamus Besar Bahasa Indonesia – that’s why Kamus and Dictionary become two of my most favorite books ever since.

In 2009, I began to blog and realized it’s a good medium to publish my writings. I can write everything as I like, and I used Tumblr that time. In 2011, I founded a blog named HeloKim, and this is something I want to share you about. HeloKim was built based on my thesis about foreign football players, and I posted most of the writings there using one person POV. So this Korean football player, I gave him name JH Kim, telling his daily life stories on the blog. I covered some topics from habits and culture of Korean, his difficulties in trying to survive in Indonesia, until his love life. Turned out, some people think JH Kim is a real person, and sent me emails! I was surprised and it motivated me to transform it into a novel draft.

The blog header, sorry if it's cheesy. 😅

However, it’s been EIGHT years now (Oh my God) and I haven’t finished it yet. I am too clueless to keep writing. I don’t know how to start over again, I also don’t have any idea about the ending. All I can imagine is the characters (because it is based on true story). Unfortunately, although experienced the stories myself, this ‘JH Kim’ and I didn’t have any ending. We just… stopped talking. Lha kalau aku bikin akhirnya begitu, bisa dikeplak pembaca ye kan?

It’s been my biggest dream to accomplish it, and I really wish there will be a production house who wants to bring it into movie (talking about DREAM). Only this year might not be the best time for it, I can’t recall where I put the draft ((-_-)). Perhaps next year I will be back to this project, get some senses of football matches and Korean culture. This, will not only be one of the highest achievement in my writing ‘career’, but also perpetuates my memories with some people who changed my mind about love and life. So… stay tune!

Lots of love,

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Readers Who Write: Favorite Book as a Child

Apart of Monday Journal #9, please be aware that I also write another blog series called “Readers Who Write”, and this is my third submission:

What was your favorite book as a child? Would you give it as an age-appropriate present? Why or why not?

When I was a child, I have profound memories with two book series: Sesame Street and Widya Wiyata Pertama Anak – Mengapa Begini Mengapa Begitu. I didn’t have complete series but I have a shelf full with the books. Right now when I browse the images from Google, I feel the warmth… oh, how those days are so full of happiness – look at me now, I have been single for the last EIGHT years, have a miserable life as deadlines and so on and so forth are chasing. #lahcurhat

Anyway, I think my mom understand since the beginning that I am an active child. I like to do a lot of activities at school, I make friends easily, and I cannot stop talking. So my mom had to find a book to make me stay quiet for some hours, i.e. when I came home from kindergarten/elementary school and I have to wait for my mom finished working. The book doesn’t only have to give me insightful knowledge (because I like being smart, ha ha), but also give me meaningful perspective about life. So both series ticked the needs.

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