It all started with a courageous junior girl walking up to the principal to ask for permission to recite a poem on the assembly ground. Everybody was thrilled, there was a loud ovation even the principal was proud to have her. Who was this girl? From the dry savannah Plains of Northern Nigeria comes the girl in question. My name is Maryam Salman and this is my Pen Story.
As a kid, my dad who was my tutor and my governor made it a responsibility to battle every aspect of my childhood with things like spelling bees, scrabble, Encarta kids, and whiz-games making me a little awkward amongst my peer groups. I grew up finding pleasure in educational games and books. At the age of 11, I had read half the books in my dad’s mini-study with vocabulary, spelling, and phonetics. Today I’m proud of the little woman I have grown into as a bibliophile.
With just 2 unpublished poems and some short stories during my secondary school days, I had no idea about writing. All I had in mind was to be the authoress of a published novel. I didn’t even belong to the press club even though they invited me. Well, I still scribbled some things on my so-called ‘diary’.
Not until the day we had a class debate of which I was the first speaker that my English teacher Mrs. Akintunde realized the girl had some skills. She called me out to the front of the class and asked me a series of questions like if I was a professional debater or a writer. Of which I replied NO though I told her about my diary.
She requested to see it and I gave her (mind you, my diary is not a private thing, I bring it to class every day and all my classmates have read one or two things from it). After reading it she asked if I really wrote this and I replied in the affirmative and she said “Salman, Where have you been hiding”
Fast forward to September 2017 when I recently joined an NGO named Safiyyah Sickle cell foundation. The President asked me to write in lieu of Sickle Cell awareness month. I didn’t take it seriously but then I woke up the next morning feeling gloomy and all of a sudden some lines started forming and I was having that frenzied feeling which I do experience while I want to put down something in ink and that lead to the birth of my 1st posted work “Ever Since Greg’s Death”
After being praised and cheered by everyone for that single work, I felt I needed to do some writings, I felt that rush of passion and uneasiness, I felt I had to make my stand, I felt the world needs me. From then I’ve had series of write-ups, poems, articles, quotes amongst which are ‘ Street hawking’, ‘Life’, ‘Poor orphan’, ‘Shattered glasses; Withered flowers’, ‘Amazing Warrioress’ and lots more.
As a med school student whom her life revolves around medical literature, the dilemma I faced and maybe is still facing is that I don’t know which aspect of writing I’m good in and then combining passion with school work isn’t easy but then that urge won’t free you so you do the little you can. I still have lots of works I’ve not been able to show the world for reasons I also don’t know.
One thing peculiar to me is that I take note of my environment, I receive inspiration from weird things and I never follow rules. Another thing is that I want to be the daughter of her mother’s dreams yet I want to be Maryam Salman. I just write because in it I’ve found solace, pouring out from the valleys of my brain and the springs of my heart, are the works you see today.
I’m just a confused girl with her quills and scrolls and lots of dreams in her head though I’ve started something with a personal blog on Instagram QuillsOnScrolls, you can follow or drop by to say Hi sometimes to this little woman with big dreams.
Maybe it’s just starting and I trust it’ll be good but life is full of ups and downs which we just have to overcome. With the hope of improving my amateur skills, I still wish to be the author of a bestselling novel in the nearest future.
My name is Maryam Salman and this is my pen story.