Living in Dreams, A Letter for Dina Oktaviani

Friday, March 15 2013

Dear Dina Oktaviani,

Thank you very much for your letter. When it was read in Creative Writing class this Monday by one of our friends, the class fell into a silent desert, but it was like a warm yet comforting, gentle autumn breeze blew against our dry skins. It was very touching. Your spirit is no doubt a good example for us, especially English Department students, and it motivates us not to give up to reach our dream as a writer. Not wanting to lose, always looking forward, and taking the risks in order to succeed. Oh, how I was moved by your words.

First off, my name is Pudy. Unlike you, if I were to tell everyone about my past, it would not be interesting at all—not like anyone would really listen anyway. I grew up as a lazy, spoiled brat. My parents spoiled me, always fulfilling my demands and gave me a lot of money to spend, and they gave me a huge trust for me to handle and be responsible to myself, as long as I kept a good track of academic rank in school. I always had good grades, though, but it was nothing but miracle (I never even studied). I did not have many friends, I used to think that I was anti-social— hand phone and computer are all that I had. All I did in the past was nothing but playing online games and gathering friends from online chat (I met many friends in PIGG, a live chat from Ameba Japan, instead of real friends around me in my daily, normal life). Therefore, I became a seriously-too-shy person, not talkative, not attractive, nothing at all.

I liked reading, of course, that was one of the reasons I chose English Literature as my major. I did write in the past. However, I am now 21. And I thought I had reached my limit to write beyond limitation. I have not yet been a good writer myself. I have tried to be one; I used to write short stories in my spare time (my writing blog had been seen for 69.433 times until this letter was written). However, I stopped writing since the beginning of the 5th semester. To be honest, as I said before, I am not good in writing, especially writing something in English—one of so many reasons why I stop writing. My grammar indeed sucks, you see? My vocabulary is also extremely limited. When I decided to make a prose or anything written in English, I would likely be stuck in a word and then I would stop writing and abandoned my work, and I would forget about the prompt as I got another prompt and this annoying circle always happened again and again.

Oddly, I didn't feel like giving up in writing. Starting last year, I have chosen to live from writing. The reason was simple—I wanted to have money from my own work, I wanted to be independent without always depending pocket-money from my parents, and to sharpen my skill in writing, of course. I, then, applied for a writing job. But it actually ate my whole spare time, and my short-story writing activity was abandoned, and I didn’t even have time to do important homeworks. It is really hard to be a writer, I see. Being chased by deadlines and can’t even step out of the room just to get myself to eat something sometimes drove me mad. When I was getting sick of having to think creatively for 24 hours, I usually ran away from my job or simply go to sleep the whole day.

Apparently, my weeks are rough. I’m trying to survive. Unfortunately, there are some things that I should give up on—considering ones that are more prior to me. I felt pathetic myself and I was not happy, until your letter came that Monday. Your letter reminds me with my own dream, which had been buried down, deep inside the earth and kept by Hades in his hell. I’m trying to dig it out again, trying to recognize what I really want, what is my goal, my destiny.

Yes, I do. Though even since I started as a free writer I always considered being a writer was my second aspiration, I actually looking forward to the time I could see my names in bookstores. I have a dream, which I’m trying to make it come true now—uh, no, I won’t tell anyone, for I believe if I were telling anyone, my dream won’t 100% come true. Thanks to you, Dina, for giving such wonderful motivation to me, to all of us. I’m sorry for my late reply, but words coming from me in this letter is sincere.

Pudy Kusumaningrum
A lazy student of English Department who hates flowers

PS. I love the way you write jokes in between serious parts of your letter. I cannot do that, so I always adore writers who are able to do it easily.

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