Saturday, December 13, 2008

Round the Block

A lot of people tell me they want to write.

They want to write movies. Books. Plays. TV shows. Articles.

And three, sometimes five years later, when asked, they say that they want to...but.... A thousand different buts.

I will not pretend to know or understand what their problems are. I just know what my problems are, when I can't seem to finish a creative project.

In my case, it was usually the fear.

A writer stands alone (Resurrecting the Champ). In a ring - a public arena of perception. Approval-seekers and people-pleasers - which most writers are - always want to make good impressions. In the case of a creative work, I believe we worry, too much, on how people will judge the work, and by extension, ourselves.

The dialogues inside the head:

"Oh, I know this part is corny, but if you would only take the time to know ME, personally, I'm really quite uncorny."

"The next part, or the next one will be better than this one. So please don't hate me. Please like me."

Blah blah blah.

A constant need or desire to be loved. But. Love belongs to Desire, and Desire is always cruel(The Sandman Comics).

The more imaginative ones, they live inside their heads. They rarely come out and play. Some fall for anti-depressants or forms of self-medication - legal or otherwise. Self-absorbed, they are always in danger of justifying to themselves.

"Oh, if only I finished this or that, they would see how good I am."

"I'll never write as good as whoeverthefuck, but if I did finish this, they'll see that I can be as good as whoeverthefuck."

I am not implying that these are YOUR dialogues. No. These, my friends, were mine.

The fear.

Some call it Writer's Block. The self-serving, self-justifying obstacle that prevents things from getting written.

I would like to say that I spit on the shoes of writer's block. That I laugh at blank sheets of paper, and crap on the face of no ideas.


These things, they stay with me. Every day. Every time I write something - anything. They never really go away.

I often indulge myself for five minutes. Feeling sorry for myself, and wallowing in self pity.

Oh, the pathos! Oh, the drama!

And then I do it.

I've made so many mistakes and ruined so many impressions - first, second or third - that I find myself not giving a shit anymore.

You can suck my dick if you don't like my shit (Under the Influence, Eminem). I have discovered, long ago, and fully realized, just recently, that no one gives a flying fuck.

People care about themselves. They do not care about you. The mistakes - spelling, grammar, factual - the might stay with them for a split second. And then they go back to thinking about themselves.

The more perverse and those who have a need to feel they are better than other people, will hold on to it for moments longer. Maybe a week or twenty years, at the most. But you will continue living. And they will also, unfortunately, continue to live as well.

No one cares about you. Or your stupid work. They only care about themselves. Boo fucking hoo. Big fucking deal.

And if you can't live with that, I suggest arsenic.

The only remedy, I discovered - again, for my situation, not yours - is tit-for-tat.

They don't care about you. So you don't care about them.

In your darkest hour, were they ever there for you? Where were they? When you were down and out for the count, whose hands lifted you up from the doldrums? Not THEM. It was yourself. Every bit of it you (The Teachings of Abraham, Esther Hicks).

No man is an island, my car is a Ford (She's All That).

So what I do these days, is, I write for myself. I do everything for myself.

I am aware of the audience. I am familiar with the rules. I know the freedoms and the limitations. The boundaries. But I do things, for me.

Most of the time.