Fariha Islam

Fariha Islam, Content Writer (English), Dhaka, Bangladesh

What inspired you to want a life in Architecture and the creative industries?
It’s rather hard not to be fascinated by spectacular architecture that resides in every little thing on planet earth and beyond. As a literature graduate with a relentless fascination for writing, it was a no-brainer to take up writing as a career. Often failing to express myself verbally, I resort to pen and paper. As I grew up and studied literature, the scope for storytelling and innovation in the creative industry pulled me in.

Growing up an introvert, whenever I felt lost and stuck, I took refuge in the words of my favourite authors. So, I think what inspires me the most would be the scope to create meaning for the ones struggling to find the right words to express their feelings. If one person can find their way by reading mine, the reason for my existence would turn a full circle.

Who inspired you in finding your path to Architecture and the creative industries?
I have always felt lost whenever someone asked me what I wanted to be or why I didn’t want to be a doctor or an engineer. Writing worked more like therapy for me; it still does at times. When I wasn’t writing for myself, I was venting in emails to my soul sister, Rosemary Mattingley in Tasmania, Australia. My confidence grew as Rosemary encouraged me on; I needed every bit of that as I wrote in my second language – English.
Her being a professional writer-editor-proofreader as well as the inspiration to the writer in me is no coincidence, in case you were wondering. Polishing my language skills and writing went well hand in hand and now, when I think of a life and career I want, people enjoying my work is music to my ears.

How you unlock obstacles and overcome bias in your work?
I have figured that no matter what the obstacle, the answer is to dig deep enough into the matter. As a writer, reading helps soothe my anxieties immensely. When I feel stuck as a writer, I hide my face in a book. Writing on an issue you barely have knowledge on can be one of the biggest obstacles in my profession so unlocking that is easy since reading until I dig right through to the bottom of something is definitely my strong suit.

Building characters is almost like having multiple personalities. I wear the shoes of my characters when I read into their respective histories. I feel the pain and anxieties of an entire walk of people for a good period and then I start belonging to that time and place in spirit. This has become a practice and now I read the miseries of the world as my own, be it in history or print media. I don’t think there are many problems that cannot be solved by reading the right selection of books but when that doesn’t work, I sit down and meditate.

If it is evident in my tone, I treat my problems as easily solvable and I put in the work to gain the knowledge and skill to solve them. I think that would be one of the most valuable skills for a creative mind to solve obstacles at work.

Studies must attract the learners by being interesting and creating a habit of reading and gaining knowledge where getting better marks in exams stays at the very back of their mind. I’ve never been a fan of being scored based on my writing and brainstorming in a pressure cooker situation of a few hours under surveillance. I’ve almost always failed to showcase my full potential in such settings. An enjoyable and free space should be ensured in academic settings so that learners stay curious to learn.

What improvements you feel are required to promote effective change in the academic and working environment?
The working environment depends largely on the superiors’ goodwill towards the employees and the employees’ sincerity towards their work. The need for hierarchy in the working environment can use a refresh as per my opinion. I would like to see companies taking care of the work-life balance of the employees on their own and the workers putting in effort sincerely to improve the combined future of theirs and the company. Workers are treated like machines that turn on at 9 am and shut down at 5 pm. That must change in the near future so that like humans, they can have time for recreation, get enlightened and create as they please.

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