The Realest Realist.
Workshops kinda suck. The good ones are really expensive and anyone claiming to be a guru probably just wants to leech your hard earned money away or mine you for your ideas. There is no middle ground with these people, but there is a logical path you can take to maintaining your sanity in your quest to getting published.
1. There is no spoon
You’re gonna be good. We’re all good. If you never appease your publisher, it’s all good. If you never get along with an editor, shit is good. If you never make a hit list or a marketing initiative its so damn good it’s horribly good. Everyone is going to die and I do mean everyone. They can’t take anything with them. Neither can you. None of it matters. Hence why you have to really be true blue about this writing shit. The brainstorming, the subconscious flow of free writing of first drafts and all the way down to the editing. Love of the work is all. That’s literally it. Your relationships will not validate your need to write. Just do it. It’s all good.Write the hell out of those damn stories for they are??? Yup all good.
2. why so srs
You’re not a Stephen King. You’re not a Just Kidding Rowling.
Be genuine. At one point I tried my hand at being this serious writer. A serious person in general. Didn’t really work. I ended up pulling a Bryan like off Family Guy. You never want to be that guy. Trust me. It doesn’t feel good. So Instead I just retreated into myself. I’m never gonna be the suit with a briefcase type. I enjoy having a wide range of emotions. It allows me to be a writer without being miserable every day of my life. Impressing people is not where the perfection of technique happens. It happens by having fun and exploring.
3. Finish your damn deadlines.
Im crazy. I stay up all night staring at pages. I dont miss my deadlines ever. You have to be the kind of person that editors and publishers can rely on. Being a writer means not being a douche, wanting to help others out. Being a decent human being.
4. Drop the Baggage
If you cant count on friends or family to support your writing, fuck em. You shape your reality. Allow form to follow function. Don’t put yourself into a situation thats gonna eventually weigh you down. It seems like we are the ones that might be setting up the very grounds, sewing them for future seeds of discomfort. If your significant other doesn’t necessarily approve of you habitually staying up late to binge on your work then you need to find a way to scale back your expectations of certain people. Co-exist because no man is an island. But limit your level of emotional involvement. Everyone wins in the end.
This extends to social media outlets and to negative people in general. Your life is your own. Lighter makes the writer when he writes. Be light.
5. Path of indifference
There are huge assholes that populate the internet. I used to feel like I had to snap these clever ass retorts whenever they would show up on my feed with shenanigans. Everyone from publishers to editors would get it if i felt they were coming at me in any kind of way. Indifference is the only way. You are the master of your own fate in this realm. You can choose what touches you and what doesnt. If you allow people to force a reaction then you’ve fallen into the trap. Trust me it isn’t worth it.
The path of indifference is a lonely one. A paradoxical one even. It is because it hurts that much more than the attention afforded by diverting. Once a person’s mind is made up, it is simply that. Best to let it go and move on constructively.
6. Live in adversity
When I’m drafting I think I get somewhere between 2-4 hours of sleep a night. It’s a love hate relationship with discomfort. You sacrifice for what you want to get done. This basically amounts to the idea that art isn’t supposed to be something that’s easy. It’s not comfortable, so get used to it and push through.
7. There is no perfect circle
Please forget–try to forget early on that what you’re doing matters in the grand scheme of things it doesn’t. There is no perfect way to do things. There is also no wrong way either. There have been times where I was stuck with my writing. Times where I would spend hours on trying to catch that perfect rhythM with what I wanted to say. In those times its best to slow down, take your time and be spontaneous. Let the subconscious flourish and just do work without being so hyper vigilant on what’s happening. The zen call it the no mind
8. No idea is original there’s nothing new under the sun.
“No idea’s original, there’s nothin new under the sun It’s never what you do, but how it’s done What you base your happiness around material, women, and large paper That means you inferior, not major.” –Nas
Take ideas from wherever you need to. What makes it special is how you internalize and then transmute that idea. Make it your own.
9. Expect the losses
I lose all the time. Just yesterday I walked into a Karate class and got roundhoused in the face. It happens. Gotta exPect to get hit. Anybody who has ever become a success has failed way more times than they’ve succeeded. It’s the nature of the beast.
10. Say no.
Make sure you speak the hell up. It’s either a definite yes or a hell to the no. Don’t even mess with it if you’re not enthusiastic about the very prospect of doing it. You gotta trust your intuition and your gut about things. If it smelled funny from jump then don’t mess with it.
11. Unnecessarily miserable
Unnecessary misery is totally unnecessary. Notice if you will, that there are times when you take your family out. You pay for a nice dinner and then you realize that your child freaks the hell out in the middle of the restaurant because it’s what two year olds do. When you find yourself in that moment you need to get the hell out. It is never fun for anybody involved. It literally goes for all events in life. Life wasn’t meant for people to be miserable and pissed off all the time. Slow down the tempo and regroup. Same thing with just about everything in life, do what makes you happy because you only get one