I don’t have much to say today. I sat down yesterday and plotted a few short stories to write over the next few weeks, as well as work on a next novel. My work life has been all-consuming lately. Three straight seventy-hour weeks, but that will abate now.
My writing dream began when I was seven. I would write a lot, for no reason that I can remember. My family thought it was weird, so I hid it from them. Still do. But one thing turns into another, and I keep going. It’s the passion for it. The idea that ideas are important, that’s what keeps me going.
I think eventually you do have to wake up a bit, though. My writing is its own thing. It either has an audience or it doesn’t. I know I can write well – that’s been validated in many ways, at many times. But that doesn’t mean I’m someone that people want to read. I try never to expect that they will. On this blog, I get readers for sure, and love every single one of them. But it’s hard to broaden out, for the most part. And I wonder if my audience is really just myself. That’s a hard realization. There are many writers who want to be read, even deserve to be. I don’t know if I deserve to be read. But even if I were, that doesn’t mean I will be read.
It’s the rain outside that’s likely talking me to an edge today. I don’t ever give up, and certainly won’t on a passion. Yes, I cross genres. Yes, I put magic into grounded worlds; and I put grounding into magical worlds. I don’t know that many people who write like me – I struggle to find stories and novels that are similar. That means I may have no natural audience. It also means, at the same time, that it’s mean doing me. Just me. And that’s okay. Who else could I be, but me? I didn’t set out to write things that naturally generate comparables to other authors. I don’t want to be the same. Why would I want that? It’s not in me, it’s just not.
In the next while, I’ll try to expand audience. Get my name out in journals. My friend Lisa Alletson, one of the best poets I’ve read online, has been encouraging me to do this. So far, I’ve only ever really entered writing contests. I do really well when entering those contests, it always humbles me to see the results. It’s validation, and I need to built on that. I need to write more for the writing community, less for me just hearing my voice on this blog. I know that. And I had best get about doing that. If I’m trying to blaze new ground – and trust me, that is my intent – then I had better get that message across. Literary cross-genre multi-genre writing told at times from a pure genre standpoint with literary roots, and at others, told from a pure literary standpoint with genres mashed together. I write in the grey space between genres. That’s me. And I need to do me. If there is no audience for that, then I’m another writer who never became a read author. There are hundreds of thousands of those out there.
That’s where my head’s at, on a rainy Sunday morning. None of this really matters, I know. I’m one voice out of thousands going on the same journey. I can just urge us to dream hard, and rage hard. That’s all I’ve got.
On another note, music. Over the last year, I’ve listened to a lot of music, but there are four artists that stand out for me over that time. Here they are, along with an example of a song that makes them quintessentially great in my mind:
- Phoebe Bridgers – I Know the End (she’s blowing up now, with grammy nods all over the place, great to see)
- Jess Williamson – Pictures of Flowers (it’s kind of a COVID song but it’s way more than that, and it’s achingly grand)
- Arlo Parks – Caroline (this person is a wonderful poet and an intense storyteller – the lyrics in this song are arresting)
- Allie Crow Buckley (I think the newest artist on this list of newer artists – this song is so skilled and confident and epic)
I’m sure these artists have their dreams. I have mine. I’m glad to see that their message has reached me. I hope my message can reach people, too. That’s the dream.
Be well, everyone. Be great, even. Do good in the world, and for each other. If we do that, everything is going to be okay.