I had been asked before on where my Imagination stems from, the fact of the matter is I have no idea. I guess it must have started in my childhood while playing with my toys. I would imagine different stories, vast lands of heroes, villains and damsels in distress. I would concoct an intricate storyline while my G.I. Joe fought off a dinosaur with laser cannons strapped on its back.
As time went on my imagination went berserk and would fill up my dreams as if sending me into a deep daze during the day was not enough. I needed an outlet and thus started my path towards creative expression.
Armed with only my mind and a crawling computer I had started off with written poetry after being inspired by the movie Dead Poets Society and my brother Haresh Daswani. It was an interesting time because just before this period I had never cared much for literature (and I wouldn’t have until a much later point in time). I wouldn’t say that I was trained in writing poetry for that matter, up until that point I focussed on drawing with a Pilot sign pen and created my own comic book characters and renditions of video games. Poetry however did not let me go, poetry filled up my waking days and sleepless nights with soft whispers that enticed me to dig deep from my creative subconsciousness and write.
My poetry started out free verse and slowly I shifted to rhyming poetry. At a certain point my mind wanted me to break free from the confines of standardized styles (I never followed any standardized styles but my mind seemed to have other ideas). I would later own write in my own style which merged all the styles that I had started with and created a rhythmic story-like poem often starting off with a single word in my head and bringing it forward.
My college professor always told me that pressure was the law of progress. He often said that we are driven to improve on what was created before us, on what is currently visible. I always thought that he meant that we feel that drive, the urge like a beautiful woman whispering into our ears, seducing us. This was the same for me. Although there was a gap in my creative expression after writing poetry, my mind never did cease to whisper in my ear. The more I ignored the seductive suggestions the more incessant it became. Until finally I broke off and wrote short fiction.
I had no training in literature or the arts. My educational experience was into business and literature was something different. The feeling of writing that first word, that first line, watching the characters and events jump out of the page from somewhere I could not find, but I could feel. It was as if I came home after a long unplanned trip, that little smile of the familiar, that things were the same even if everything around me completely changed. That was when it hit me.
By the time I had realized this little bump on my head, I had written over twenty short stories, had two stories published and was well on my way to drafting a novel. I did find that blunt object that hit me on my head, it was a shiny gold brick that had a slight chip on one of the corners. I imagined that was what actually hit me. It was the golden realization of my creative expression, it was the natural progression of my creative works, the internal pressure, the drive, the soft seductive whispers. This led to the next step: Downtown Legends.
Downtown legends came to me one cool spring day. The winter lasted slightly longer, the weather was very cold and everyone was savoring the last remnants of the low temperature before summer came.
Unlike everyone else who drank tea in little plastic cups, I took a cigarette to my mouth and looked up. I saw what was coming. I waited for it, my body craved the feeling of change. I knew it was there, it was peeking ever so slightly, taunting me to take a step forward and grab it.
When I did turn that corner and embraced the little feeling that drove me nuts all spring that was when the image appeared to me. Normally an idea would just pop into my head and it would materialize through my hands. This was different I actually saw it… felt it. It was the idea of creating a story. Tales of heroism, tragedy, deceit, love, and above else human frailties.
That was when my episodic fiction was born.
Credit must of course be due to the right people. Firstly thanks to my brother Haresh Daswani for giving me the title for my blog: Downtown Legends. I would also like to thank Caleb Alvarado (http://www.flickr.com/people/asuarch/) for the image that is on the header of my website.