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Mystique of creative writing

Writing becomes creative when imagination plays its part in reconstructing human life. It is not difficult to present real happenings or to delineate a true character. It is more or less a photographic representation of what is happening around us. Human mind receives myriad impressions during the course of life and these become a part of memory. NS Tasneem writes.

punjab Updated: May 31, 2013 09:26 IST
NS Tasneem

Writing becomes creative when imagination plays its part in reconstructing human life. It is not difficult to present real happenings or to delineate a true character. It is more or less a photographic representation of what is happening around us. Human mind receives myriad impressions during the course of life and these become a part of memory.


The study of texts further enriches the mind and there is some display of inter-textuality at the time of creative writing. Imagination holds together the obvious, the real and the true in such a manner that a new product emerges on paper, canvas or stone. It may take the form of a painting, a song, a sculpture or even the movements of a dance. Just as it is difficult to segregate the dancer from the dance, it is impossible to pinpoint the part that imagination has played in giving a particular shape to a creative writing. It is indeed a mysterious process, of which even great writers and artists are unaware. Still there is something palpable that occurs in the inner recesses of the human mind.

Personally speaking, I never intended to be a writer. For me, reading books was an end in itself. My intention was not to gather together the gems of wisdom but to have a glimpse of the inner working of the human mind. How the thinking minds conceive and express themselves was the sole motive of my voracious reading. The habit of reading, not only the books but also the journals, became inveterate with the passage of time, which later took the form of the way of my life. I would not have deviated from this path even if I had intended to do so.

The novel for me is an art form and its aesthetic aspects have an edge over its ethical ramifications. It can be viewed as an integrated whole - 'a living thing, all one and continuous'. The beauty of an idea invariably appears in an attractive garb of words that delights the heart of the reader as much as it refines his mind. No bland statements need be allowed to interfere in the free flow of the narrative.

There is chaos in my mind when I sit down to write. Slowly out of the chaos, harmony begins. Order is restored and the opening sentence is crawled on the blank page. Thereafter word follows word and sentences are formed at a great speed. When I am disturbed in the course of my writing, I find it hard to recollect the sentence that had earlier been formed in my mind. In exasperation, I write down the sentence that comes handy but in the heart of hearts I know that it has changed the complexion of the dialogue. Sometimes the course of events is also altered as there is no predetermined outline of the plot in my mind. The creative process is like the unfolding of a long scroll in slow degrees.

Restlessness is experienced for a period and something cooped up in the mind struggles for release. There is an intense desire to see light at the end of the tunnel. Slowly, the sun starts glowing in the misty atmosphere of the wintry dawn. That moment is also the moment when the mind expands to comprehend the beauty of the universe and, at the same time, to assimilate the warmth of the joy of living.