* Single mom;
* Likes dogs, nature trips, music, and words;
* Currently doing fieldwork and research in one of the provinces here in the Philippines;
* I have a 10-year-old daughter named Jaisha Belinda;
* I have two books published on Amazon: Meeya (Book One) and 111 Poems For The Soul;
* I also have a blog, KwentongDiwa.Com; although I haven’t been using it for a long time now (Haha).
Our writer Abhinav (Wild Whispers) caught up with Diwa. In this free-wheeling conversation, Diwa gave us a sneak peak into her life. How did she start writing? What inspired her to get started with writing? Read on!
Abhinav: To start with could you please tell readers a little about yourself. I have read the best of the quotes on your profile and I would love to know if someday you were to describe yourself in a 100 – 150 words, what would you say about yourself? How does Diwa ‘the writer’ see Diwa ‘the person’?
Diwa: As a person, I would say that I’m quite the ambivert, in the sense that my social skills are always mood-based. I can deal with my external environment, easily, as well as have my own private universe. My whole world revolves around the people I love–my daughter and my mom. I will do anything for them.
As a writer, I could mention that I have been writing for more than 20 years now. Words have always been my life. I love reading and I love writing. I spend most of my free time observing the world and inundating myself with stories; be it real life accounts or fiction.
In a sense, I’m just me. I can effortlessly adjust with whatever situation I am faced with. Quite a realist, I can write about fantastical stuff but the way I deal with life is always based on the actual strengths and weaknesses I have.
I took up Social Science during my university days; hence, every analysis is drawn using the perspective of the human mind. Because, anything is subjective unless we deal with facts that are irrefutable and universal. Although, I love challenging the truth, on my own–pushing myself to transcend established norms and all that. In a nutshell, I am a daredevil and I don’t really stay stagnant in the pool of complacency and lazy ignorance.
Abhinav: This is besides the interview (wouldnt be uploaded if you say) and please forgive me the curiosity. When you mention people you love, you mention your daughter (would love to know her name) and your mother. I have mostly seen people also mentioning their better half. Is there any story behind?
Diwa: My daughter’s name is Jaisha Belinda and my mom’s name is Melinda (You can actually publish it if you wish too, Abhi. I do not have much to hide. Hehe) I do think that most people know that I am a single mother. Jaisha is 10 years old and is starting to have a really inquisitive mind of her own. Haha.
Abhinav: I dont know why but I want to say that the respect I had for you was anyway as high as mountains but after reading about the warrior that rests in you the very respect has reached its summit. Also I know warriors dont seek sympathy and so I give you none but then again I would add – People inspire by their work while your very attitude is inspiring.
Diwa: Thanks a lot, Abhi. It has always been a goal to inspire others to write. Writing is such a beautiful occupation and pastime. One gets to create different worlds with the mere use of one’s imagination, a pen, and sheets of paper
Abhinav: How did you develop the flare for writing? Where and how does this journey start?
(Given that on YQ most writers come saying that they want to express themselves or have been hit by a heart break. Very few actually come because they wanted to write. It always is another reason which brings them to writing. Please throw some light on yours.)
Diwa: Writing has always been part of my routine. I started writing when I was around 5 or 6 years old. My parents have inculcated in me the love for words and music early in life. My mom says that I could easily recite memory rhymes and know each rhyme’s location in the books I owned even when I was a year or two old. Hence, it has become my greatest strength.
As regards joining YQ, I have always been on the lookout for an app that could easily consolidate the write-ups that would randomly come to my mind. I would usually just write them down on loose notebook leaves and then forget about them. YQ gave me the kind of online storage where I can easily pen down impromptu wordplays and even be read by others. Thus, I became addicted to it. There are free days when I could simply “vomit” words onto my wall without any care for the outside world. It’s a big bonus that people get to read these oeuvres even when they’re sort of weird, most of the time. Hahaha.
Abhinav: If there is one experience that has impacted your life the most, which experience would that be? Something which changed Diwa’s perspective of life.
Diwa: One really big thing that has impacted much of my life, is the fact that I became pregnant with her. Being a daredevil all my life, I had to rearrange my priorities and focus on my daughter. Nowadays, the decisions that I make, are always in line with how she will be affected by them. I am her main provider; so, I need to be careful of the consequences of my actions. In truth, I am a better person because of her presence in my life.
Abhinav: Ok now please tell me how did you land up on YQ?
Diwa: I came upon YQ via playstore. I was searching for a kind of online writing app that will help consolidate my weird write-ups. I tried other apps too; yet, YQ gave me that user-friendly interface that doesn’t require too much adjustment and all that. One can use simple backgrounds and even have varied fonts to choose from.
Abhinav: What would Diwa say if I were to ask two positives and 2 negatives of YQ? (we would learn from this)
Diwa: Two positive comments for YQ:
a) It’s a thriving community where both veteran writers and beginners can interact and grow, in terms of skill set and audience;
b) It’s also a widely used application, nowadays; hence, we get to read varied write-ups that usually inspire us to be better writers–and people. I get to read a lot of writers who really share such uplifting narratives, poems, and quotes at YQ.
Two negative comments for YQ:
a) A lot of people at YQ use the app merely to gain popularity. That’s not an advisable reason to start writing at YQ or in any other platform. When our motivation to write is only to gain popularity in this world, we defeat the very purpose of this wonderful talent. First and foremost, writing is something that is very personal. Even when you tackle real life issues, especially as regards technical or news writing, your own attitude (and personality) shines through. Hence, it will always show the kind of motivations you have. We ought to remember that a lot of others read the posts we create and also observe the way we write, including our personal views, etc. Therefore, there is that need to be accountable for whatever we post and to be true to the essence of writing. It doesn’t matter whether or not we become popular at YQ. What actually matters is the main example that we get to set–and the fact that we get to write.
b) There are lots of posers at YQ who aren’t true to themselves. I mean, it’s good to appear awesome and such. However, there is that need to be real–in the sense that we don’t abuse the fantastical license we have. An example would be the usage of words. I don’t mean to be judgemental but I truly dislike reading people who love using highfaluting words that they don’t actually understand. See, if you don’t really know the meaning of a specific word, then don’t use that word. The beauty of a write-up isn’t mainly seen in the use of fancy terms. It’s depth is gleaned from its overall impact. One can use simple, elementary words and yet, be able to touch the hearts of readers. You see, the main ingredients should always be “realness” and “sincerity”. My rule of thumb is: Write what you know because you aren’t even in a contest with anyone else but yourself.
Abhinav: I am glad to be learning from you mate. Could completely relate to what you had to say. Diwa, every word in English has a varied usage. The language can be made beautiful by enhancing our vocabularly and using words differently. Also why I love to read your write ups is because when am reading you am always learning.
But then there is an essence behind every English word. A word cant just be used at any place. Tell me how can one develop this art of using words correctly. Also give some tips to the users and us of how can one improve their language
Diwa: Yes, I agree with you as regards the need to practice. We learn, not only through reading others, but also through practicing what we learn. Thus, we can do that by levels. We cannot jump from simple to advanced just like that. Every artist starts from the bottom. He slowly enhances that skill by nonstop practice. Theory plus action shall create wondrous masterpieces.
Write everyday. Write your heart out. Never be stopped by the criticisms and insecurities you get drowned in. Transcend those limitations always.
Also, read books. Read the classics. Read contemporary writers. Read current events. Watch movies. Listen to varied music genres. Interact with people–especially people of entirely a different walks of life from your own. Be open to the myriad possibilities and interconnections that happen in even the minute instances of this life.
In my opinion, a writer gets to develop a solid skill set by being open to anything. Adventures happen everyday and they happen in the simplest ways. However, we get blinded by the various pressures and responsibilities.
So, we waste those moments where tiny miracles happen–little wonders that can actually produce beautiful write-ups. Observe. See the tiny nuances of this world–that crack in the pavement, the frown on your friend’s face, the dimple in your enemy’s cheek. Stuff like that. Never be scared to be different.
Most importantly, live life to the fullest–and then, write about it.
Also, remember to use the dictionary. The words that you don’t understand, list them down and find their meanings in the dictionary. Use the thesaurus to find further terms for the word, too.
Abhinav: Thank You Diwa. I have no words to thank you for the time that you have given and the spark you have ignited in me. It was my first time interviewing someone and to be honest I dont think I could have interviewed anyone better. I would continue learning from your words and of life.
All love for your daughter, you and your mum.
May the stars shine on you and may you always have reasons to smile.
Diwa: Thank you, Abhi, for the time and the honor you bestowed on me. Thank you for this act of kindness. It was such a pleasure to answer your questions. To be honest, I haven’t been focusing on YQ for months now. Work has been keeping me away. At the moment, I am away from home and I am praying for the chance to visit my daughter this coming weekend. Fieldwork is tiring but then the sense of fulfillment comes when you get to speak with the poorest of the poor and help them alleviate their pains, even just a bit of it. Super thank you for your interview. Your thoughtfulness is a big, big gift for me today. I haven’t been reading you and everyone else for weeks now. However, I shall get back to reading you as soon as time permits some kind of leeway in my schedule.
Follow Diwa on the YourQuote app!🌻
Interviewed by Wild Whispers.🌟
Originally posted at YQ Interviews, 12 Dec 2018 at 16:21