I was sure that I would be a great writer one day. But a couple of attempts to get published did not work, and I stopped trying. Once a reporter friend of a friend, who saw some lovelorn poetry of mine in my diary tore the pages ou,t and had them published in the Times of India. She said readers wrote appreciative letters.
As luck would have it, I got the opportunity to write reports on classical music performances for a reputed newspaper. There at the concerts, I was amazed to see how some people, who were knowledgeable about the intricacies of notes and variations, became stiff if I asked them to help me out, when I was unable to attend a concert. They were connoisseurs of music, who knew when a certain piece had first been played, who popularized it, how it has undergone subtle changes over the years, and many such gems of information that would have added weight to my article. But when you asked them to tell you about it for the newspaper they would freeze and say inane things in a rigid manner. And I became popular in that small circle of music lovers as a writer, although I was not thoroughly knowledgeable about it as I should ideally be.
Now comes the part when I have decided to write for money. For the first time in my life I have started getting loads of negative feedback. Some magazines found my writing to be too simple. Some felt my style did not suit their blog. And today, a student of mine, for whose blog I wrote something said that the essay I sent her had 'too many grammar mistakes' and 'language problems'.. Every day is new and inspiring, it seems.