This week l finished watching the series The Get Down on Netflix (which I highly recommend by the way). The lead character, Ezekiel Figuero a.k.a. ‘Books,’ struck a chord with me because of his eloquent, poetic articulation style. With every word he uttered, be it in a rap or conversation, he conveyed his message of resilence and unshakable determination to overcome the obstacles crossing his path. One of his verses in particular resonated with me in the final episode of Season 2, when he talked about the struggle of life. He said:
Life is a test
It will break you or drive you
Into the ground
In the game of survival.
These words resonated with me because of my own life story in which I repeatedly experienced setbacks and hardship, which I overcame through sheer determination and a burning drive to succeed. I wrote about my tumultuous journey in my memoir, Walking in Footsteps of Promise, which I published just over two years ago. Seeing Ziek in The Get Down reminded of the reason why I wrote my story down and the simple message that I wanted to convey in my writing. Confronting and overcoming adversity is an old tale, which we must constantly rewrite though the course of our lives since we are constantly tested and retested. The key to survival is to keep on getting back up when you are knocked to the ground by life’s test and not letting it break you. In my opinion that’s the ‘secret sauce’ to success in life.
As I reflect more deeply on this, I have also been thinking recently a lot about how to crystallize the message in Children of the Ocean God, my upcoming historical fiction novel. My next book is more than just an entertaining and inspiring story of black resistance to white hegemony during colonial times in the Caribbean. I want to go a layer deeper, to communicate a meaningful message that sparks readers to further introspection and challenges them to question the world around them. It is not something that I intend to force, however, it is important for me as a writer to venture into this higher plane of thought. As my evolution as a scribe unfolds I find myself naturally drawn towards psychology and philiosophy since they govern and explain human life and behavior. My search for the deeper message in my writing has a long way to go and in large part is fuelled by my drive to attain my higher self. For this I will keep drawing inspiration from the beauty of the world around me and in particular the amazing people that I meet.
Thanks for stopping by. I’ll write more soon! As always feel free to leave a comment below.