A Clear Knack for Being Awesome: Introducing Quiet Diarist Malahni Banta

By Malahni Banta

Since I can remember, I knew I was different from most individuals around me. For one, when people would walk up to me and introduce themselves first, I wondered, “What type of witchcraft is this? Speaking without being spoken to first? Insane!” I would carry on the conversation, of course, but I would use as few words as possible. This would lead people to believe I didn’t enjoy their company or the conversation, which wasn’t (always) true. Most of the time, I preferred listening to speaking. I would sit and observe the interactions and reactions of other people and would cringe whenever people pitied me for sitting by myself; solitude is my natural state. In school, I would not raise my hand to answer questions I very well knew the answers to. If there was any room for improvement and I needed a bit of assistance, I’d decide to figure it out on my own. Independence was something I was fine being left with.

My younger siblings, brother and sister, are both extroverted, and so I’ve always been around individuals who were opposite of me. My father has always been the life of the party, and my mother has been known to speak her mind when the time comes, though I’d say she too leans toward the introverted side of the spectrum.

Despite my introversion, I enjoyed speaking to a handful of kids in school, and, if I was so bold, even continued interacting with them once the final bell rang.

I guess you can say I’m very mellow. My voice is soft, and I dress however I feel like dressing. And I basically just go about life walking slowly and observing things. When I’m not writing, I’m watching a ton of movies, which is my second passion!

I’ve been writing as long as I can remember, delving into genres such as poetry, humor, satire, short story, and, my personal favorite, novels. I find it quite therapeutic, not to mention invigorating. I get to spend extended periods of time writing about nonexistent people, and not being considered crazy! I’m living the dream.

Some things to note about me:

  • I am a huge fan of sarcasm and dry humor.
  • I grew up in the town of Ossining, New York, where I’ve had my fair share of suburban high school experiences.
  • I’ve received over 25 awards for my writing.
  • In the eighth grade I joined the football team and spoke maybe three words the whole season.
  • My favorite color is red though I only say this because there’s always that annoying, politically correct person who says “that’s a shade” when I say “black.”

Bear with me, folks. My life isn’t always this amazing musical number I’m sure you’ve already assumed it to be. Despite my clear knack for being awesome, I put my pants on one leg at a time, like everyone else, and still shop at my local supermarket.

That being said, what’s a writer without a tragic backstory? I’ll tell you: boring.

When I was younger, in the seventh grade, to be exact, I experienced a significant amount of bullying from my peers, which inevitably took a toll on my mental health. During my time recovering from said effects, I decided that instead of sitting around and rotting from the inside out, I would begin indulging in literature, both the reading and the writing aspects. Now, five years later, I’m making great strides as both a person and a writer, and I use my past as well as my current experiences to educate others when it comes to the effects of bullying and depression, and inadvertently use my life as the basis for most of my writing.

I’m more than happy that I get to share my innermost thoughts (and complaints) here with those who are interested in hearing them. I hope you all are happy to hear them!