Rabat - I have been drawn to the beauty of writing for a long time. My love of words, sentences, and paragraphs made me zealous to express myself. This love, obviously, is an outcome of reading what others have written over the ages, being profoundly touched by it and wanting to share this understanding. I admire the ability of someone to articulate his or her emotions, thoughts and opinions through a piece of prose or poetry. This is simply because I find this craft aesthetically amazing and worthy of adoration. As time has passed, my longing for writing has only expanded exponentially.
Rabat – I have been drawn to the beauty of writing for a long time. My love of words, sentences, and paragraphs made me zealous to express myself. This love, obviously, is an outcome of reading what others have written over the ages, being profoundly touched by it and wanting to share this understanding. I admire the ability of someone to articulate his or her emotions, thoughts and opinions through a piece of prose or poetry. This is simply because I find this craft aesthetically amazing and worthy of adoration. As time has passed, my longing for writing has only expanded exponentially.
Accordingly, I decided to endeavor so to achieve my writing aspirations. In doing so, I started jotting down some ideas on paper, trying to write an article. But because I was unaware of elements such as structure, coherence, tone, and style, I was vulnerable to getting lost in the text. As a result, I gave up thinking these skills would come in time. Soon after doing some research, I learnt that writing is not simply an act of jotting down words randomly on a blank page, but rather an art, an act of design, creativity, and most importantly inspiration. That is, I realized that a writer is like an architect, for both create based on a structure that should respect certain parameters; otherwise, the outcome would be chaotic. For this reason, taking the journey of writing requires bearing in mind some insights, some of which have been felicitously pointed out by Susan Sontag who said, “Love words, agonize over sentences. And pay attention to the world.” This focus guided me to aspire to represent reality in an eloquent and accessible fashion, especially when I felt an intensified sensitivity towards the matter. After this shift in my perspective of writing, I was just waiting for the right moment to let that pure energy out of me.
Thereafter, I met up with an old friend, Khalid, who was working as a translator from French to Arabic for some daily newspapers here in Morocco. We used to meet often, sitting in a café in the city center of Rabat. Honestly, I always looked forward toward our meetings, whereby I was nourished and enlightened. This is because the man is a genius with an encyclopedic knowledge of literature, politics and science. Knowing him made me realize the importance of fruitful friendships and gave me an appreciation of how exquisitely knowledge can deepen and enrich our outlook of life. Then I had another friend, Zouhir, who was a college student with whom I used to discuss books, current events, religion, politics and more. It was good to find a kindred spirit because Zouhir had writing ambitions and was working on fulfilling them as well.
One evening, I met with him at a local café that we used to frequent. Suddenly, he opened his laptop and shared his very first article to be published on a website. In fact, this inspired me to act on what I knew and to stop waiting for perfection, which is an illusion. Leave no room for self-doubt—just do it.
In 2011, the beginning of the Arab uprisings, Zouhir wrote his second article entitled, “The Awaited Moroccan,” challenging Moroccans to stand up for their rights instead of being passive and apathetic. Once again, this was a clarion call to my own self to stand up in the fullness of my human nature and voice my own opinions about the matter, especially since politics is one of my passionate interests. At that point, I began to write in earnest. The thing that struck me the most is that as soon as I started to write, the words flowed as a flood. When I finished the first draft, I gave it to Zouhir for his opinion. After receiving his feedback, I went back to the piece and made some improvements on it until I felt assured and confident about it. My article was called “People and their Struggle for Rights.” In it, I focused on different stages of non-violent struggle against various kinds of oppression throughout human history, from Socrates to Rosa Parks. And I ended with Gandhi’s philosophy of struggle, conveying by my article that human rights are never acquired easily, thus we should tirelessly fight for them. Once I saw my article posted on a website’s column section, I felt flattered and promptly shared it with Khalid by way of a surprise. He was so impressed that he proudly shared it with his colleagues.
Many are those who retain some fascinating memories of their very first written piece. The Syrian-born Lebanese poet and literary critic Ali Ahmad Said, for instance, sent his first article to a newspaper in order to publish it, but the editors rejected it. After many failed attempts, he signed the article under the name Adonis, originally a figure from Greek mythology, and succeeded in having it published. Hence, he became known worldwide by the name Adonis.
Publishing my first article wasn’t only akin to giving birth to a child but was also a source of motivation which encouraged me to keep writing since then. Indeed, “Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” (Anaïs Nin).
This is the end of the story; I will lay my pen down until the next one.
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