It all starts with something.
I remember the time when Wattpad came into my life. It was around early 2011 and I was looking for a site wherein I could read free stories. And then a very peculiar orange W sign appeared. Read what you like. Share what you write. The motto was plain and simple. And so I installed the application in my phone and started browsing it. And it took me two minutes of utter confusion before I hurriedly pressed the button which said Quit.
A few more months after that, I was talking to a friend. That person asked me what I was doing. I said I was reading. And then that someone told me, Why don’t you write, you read way too much. It was probably because every time that same person asked me what I was doing, it so happened that I was reading a book. But then those words somehow made a difference. It was like a snap in front of my face. And I was like, Yeah, why don’t I start writing again?
I started writing when I was twelve. Being an anime fan back then, I was fond of girls having super powers and saving the world. If I could remember it right, my first completed story was about four girls who had elemental powers – Earth, Fire, Water, and Light. You might ask why Light and not Air. Well, yours truly was fond of lights so I couldn’t help but make the last girl as Light. And so I finished that story and then threw it away. What? Yes, I threw it away out of frustration. It was really a crap. A real one.
And so from that day on, I never wrote again. I didn’t believe that I could actually create something good. I lacked confidence, thinking I wasn’t good enough. And I had a long list of other excuses, more on that later (like in the next paragraph). There were times when I felt like I wanted to write again, when ideas came into my mind and I shoved them away, and some other things. But thinking that I would only end up writing ‘craps’, I didn’t dare make one again. I wrote poems and random stuff but never a story.
And those words, that simple suggestion made me recall my forgotten dream, that is, to be a writer. And so ten years after throwing my first book, I started writing again. I had no clue what I was doing. I only read books. I’d never paid that much to my English classes before. I was only fond of literatures back then. And the degree I was holding was far from creative writing. If memorizing microorganisms and studying blood chemistry would make my English better, I’d never have to worry about my crappy grammar. And also, English is not my first language. I seldom use it in a day. But you might ask, why not write in my own language? It’s because I’m even worse at it, how ironic, huh?
But then, despite all those excuses, I’d decided to give it a try again. One thing that I learned in my college days was that you couldn’t say that it was impossible unless you give it a try. Science shows endless possibilities. And somehow, it also applies to life. So after a long shot of writing slumber, I started writing again.
When I first made my Wattpad account, my story was limited to my own language. I was starting This Heart of Mine at that time. I had 200 reads and twentiesh votes. And at that time, I wanted to transfer to the English language and make a new account (I wasn’t informed about the existence of support.wattpad.com at that time so I wasn’t able to ask them about it). And those 200 reads took me forever to give up. I’m serious. It meant the whole world to me at that time. Those 20 people I saw reading per chapter was everything. I counted days before I got the courage to give up that account and start again.
And five stories later, Like Yesterday has 1M reads now. It never occurred to me that this is even possible, swear! It’s like an unattainable dream. I have no idea how people in the What’s Hot List get those many reads. But things do happen, dreams can come true. It’s all yours to take. And as the saying goes, never let the odds keep you from doing what you want. So for all of you who are saying those same things that I told myself before, it’s time for you to trust your gut instinct that you can make it work. ‘Cause chances are, you can.
Thank you for you who’s who reading this. And for everyone who loved and supported and enjoyed Like Yesterday, thank you all! That 1M reads would still be impossible if not for all of you.
p.s. I kinda enjoyed sharing my Wattpad experience to you all. So maybe I’d do more next time. I’ll try answering common questions that I receive in my inbox each day. If you want to ask me anything, feel free to do so. 🙂