Mufeed Usman (mufeed) wrote,
Mufeed Usman

Jacob's story ... Misc. musings ... FPS let down ...

18th Sunday, Mar. 2007 (28th Safar, 1428)
Sharq (Kuwait)

Dear Diary,

(14:44) Jacob had a story to tell. A tale that was real to the depth of a quark. An encouraging story, simple, about what struggle and determination could achieve; if not the loftiest of achievements.

Jacob is a twin-pronged professional. A staff at Kuwait Airways in the day time and an interesting and warm book-store keeper after hours.

Q8books. One of my latest discoveries in search to satisfy my vocabulary-craving-mind. A small yet cozy bookstore situated on the mezzanine floor of a busy shopping complex in Maliya. My first visit to the place had me bowled over by its charming and inviting appeal.

A simple and directionless idea, like many are during the stage of inception, fanned by the passion of an individual to provide worthy and at the same time books at affordable prices gave birth to Q8books. Discouraged by near and dear ones early on and with very little experience in running a business of his own, it was a definite plunge into the abyss of the uncertain.

Armed with comic books (would you believe that?) from peers and some sundry titles he ventured to color the dream he had cherished for long. Never giving in to the dispiriting ‘help’ he received; rowing forward in the tempest with the conviction that a land filled with promise was in store for him. Mending the sails battered by strong winds with one hand while the other grabbing on to the dear oars of his life, he has certainly set an example to those still toeing with thoughts on the banks of ‘safety’ which in reality reeks of feebleness and severe lack of spirit in undertaking an adventure – the very mark which separates the bold from the cowardly.

The general junta talks and aims at acquiring the benefits of both the coasts without even showing the slightest courage to move even a mile away from the shores of  safety. And that, my friends, is not going to take them anywhere.

Never in the history of this world has someone achieved any fame by sticking on to the lines drawn by those who are all talks and nothing but talks; who have achieved (measly) only by climbing the shoulders of others to take a peek around the wall which in their individual capacity would be unthinkable. It is the ones who stray, the ones who experiment who leave a footprint behind.

(15:44) The reviews about Chetan Bhagat’s Five Point Someone (FPS) were very alluring to the writer in me. The other being that it was a plot revolving around the campus life; something close to my heart.

Gliding across a few pages I was stunned. Disappointed. Pushed to the very lows of the planes of inspiration. It wasn’t his style of writing nor was it the treatment of his novel. It was simply that it bore a striking similarity to the plot that I was working on. Though mine hasn’t reached a notable proportion I could clearly see how it would materialize. The readers would certainly opine that mine was a subset (‘copied from’ put diplomatically) of FPS. With every page I turned I found my enthusiasm waning; at the same time the reader in me was pushing to move forward to uncover the plots.

I stepped out of the bus clutching what once I thought would be a source of inspiration. All of a sudden I found myself put among the common folk. Stripped and deprived of my writer’s identity. A common man. A wage earner. As I walked away from the bus stop towards my home I could hear the rhythm of the Arabian drum beats emanating from the stereo of a car waiting to rocket forward on the green.
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