Because I am constantly searching for marvellous new ways to procrastinate, and yes, just for the hell of it, I have decided to send a message to my country’s Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture.
Granted they have a huge portfolio on their hands, I tell myself I must be patient. I cannot (however I want to!) expect a website of international standards. After searching in vain for a Contact Us feature, finding their FAQ of no help, and realising their long (and bewildering) list of departments and divisions can only be contacted by phone and not email, I resorted to clicking on Portal Feedback.
Then I wrote them my message:
Hello there. I was hoping you could help me. I am a Malaysian currently based in Edinburgh, Scotland, as I was studying in university here. I was wondering if you could tell me of any government support for writers there in Malaysia. Are there any measures / clubs / activities undertaken by the government to encourage literature and writing? I hope someone can answer me. Thank you.
I was assured that someone would get back to me within three working days, which by Malaysian government standards could be anything from A Week to Never, since after all I am providing no feedback on their website whatsoever.
Hmmm, perhaps I could have commented on how one of their links read: COMPLIANT AND QUERY.
Or how the English version of their new portal is not very, well, English.
Procrastination is a Another Word for Stew
PS! My friend Alison repeated to me a marvellous theory, something along the lines of how procrastination is the brain’s way of giving itself time to work out a story in your head. Kind of like letting all these ingredients simmer into a lovely stew. I like this theory!