This year, Haruki Murakami fans experienced continued disappointment at him being denied the Nobel Prize for Literature yet again. I was reading the comments below The Japan Times’ reporting of this, and found mixed responses concerning whether he was deserving of this award: enthusiastic yeses and emphatic nos, assertions of his brilliance and scoffs that he is overrated.
I recently visited the newly minted library dedicated to his work (The Waseda International House of Literature – The Haruki Murakami Library). Books from his collection lined the walls of the room adjacent to the entrance as well as the center staircase leading down to the study and cafe area. The leader of my writing circle mentioned What I Talk About When I Talk About Running when I told her what I would be doing, so I searched for it and brought it with me to the audio room. Jazz played as I reclaimed the feeling of being engrossed in a book. I did find myself wishing for more floors to explore, but I enjoyed the outing regardless.
Not everyone is a Murakami fan, and yet, I was surrounded by his books translated by translators who signed up for the linguistic grapple. Reservations were fully booked for the next month by people who saw this library as worthwhile to visit. It was built with generous donations of time, money, and energy by people who felt this project was warranted.
Not everyone likes Murakami’s writing, but there are people who do. Enough people to support his career. Enough people to make this building I stood in a reality. As I writer myself, I know not everyone likes my writing. But there are people that like it enough to subscribe and ask for more (thank you!).
I created this website a little over a year ago with the aim of putting my writing out there. To not worry about pleasing everyone and just stand by what I create. I enjoyed writing what I’ve written and I know there are people who will enjoy reading it. So whatever it is you feel that persistent nudge to do, just go for it. Not everyone will like what you produce, and that’s okay. Enough people will.