When Everything Sucks

Writing is not a hobby; it’s a hassle…except for that one time when the stars align, and the words flow from your fingers onto the page, dazzling and bright. Fairies flit around your head like points of light on a crown- because you deserve a crown. You are the monarch of magic, the empress of exceptionalism, the goddess of grammar. You are utterly perfect because this scene wrote itself, and that only happens when you are writing the most incandescent, glorious literature in the history of humanity.

Of course, then you go back to that same wonderful scene later, and find a thousand and one errors, because you are not Shakespeare, who apparently only ever had one draft of his sonnets: the final draft (bear in mind that this information came from my high school English teacher who may or may not have been high at the time). And so, you begin editing.

And then you continue editing.

You look over your third draft, expecting to see brilliance shining out of every- oh shit, look, there’s another plot hole that you have to fill. You edit again.

The fourth draft rolls along, and you’re starting to lose patience with yourself. How are you such a bad writer? How the hell did you manage to screw this up so badly? Does your protagonist even have a voice anymore?

At this point, your story isn’t even a story in your mind anymore, it’s more of a conglomeration of scenes, and facts about character development. Your mind is a list of plot developments that you must foreshadow and themes that you have to clarify. There’s that one theme that you wanted to incorporate, but can’t because the scenes you’d need to add in to make it happen would overload the plot…yeah, that theme is driving you slowly insane. Not that insanity is that much of a leap from your current (metaphorical) mental status.

If this is how writing is to you, welcome to the club. It’s called Writers Anonymous, meetings are on Tuesdays on top of a very high building.

Instead of my usual whiny drivel about how creativity sucks the life out of us creative folk, I thought that I should try my hand at being an actual asset to humanity. Brace yourself for some motivational drivel.

Right, bitches, you chose this path for a fucking reason, and it must’ve been a good one if you got far enough down the path to have actually found this obscure post with a writing tag. Since you’ve got a good reason to write, and assuming you have some sort of idea to work with (I don’t care if it’s shitty or not, you can refine it with your critique partner or beta readers…hell, email me if you really need someone to talk it over with), all you need is the skill to make your passion a reality. Unlike other artistic endeavours where you need a modicum of talent to build on, any idiot can learn to string some words into a sentence. Figuring out which words to use to get your thought across comes with practice. That’s really all writing requires: an unhealthy obsession with the art, a love of reading (so you can learn by example), and practice.

Basically, you can be as thick as my waist after eating an entire cheesecake- if you practice and read, you will eventually figure out how to write, and from there it’s just a matter of developing a skin thick enough to plow through the copious rejections your fabulous manuscript will get for you.

Reflecting on that, maybe I shouldn’t have attempted a motivational post…I’m pretty sure most inspirational compositions don’t have so many insults.

So, what motivates you to keep going down your chosen path?

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14 thoughts on “When Everything Sucks

      1. Ya know, I enjoy your sarcasm in writings. It makes me feel relieved that I draw pictures, that I do not have to worry about setting, plots , characters, all that with Language. I suppose, Visual is another form of speech. I can draw an embarrassing amount of nude people. 🙂

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      2. I’m glad you like sarcasm, because that’s pretty much the only language I know how to speak 😛 Nude people are the best kind of people, I love your blog! Well, a picture’s worth a thousand words, so if takes you a lot less time to say (I’m assuming, I don’t actually know how long it takes you to paint something) what it takes me hours to construct, props to you 🙂

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      3. Usually my visual pieces take about 4 hours. I work really small. I think in part though the rapidness in which I work is a result of all my Studio Art course in College. Each class last 3 hours. Break, then another class 3 hours. That happened 4 days a week. Friday course was 6 hours long. I did that for 5 years. Anyways, love your humor. Props to you as well! Keep going, keep creating! 🙂

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      4. Wow, four hours?? Really?? I usually takes me about an hour to write a blog post…it takes significantly longer to write something more “creative” though, which I have to create from scratch instead of personal experiences. Art school sounds intense though; were the profs helpful in teaching your artistic techniques, or was the time to practice more useful? Thanks 😀

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      5. Yep, 4 hours. Art School was intense. The first year was training. Learning about colors, how to mix paint. Yeah , tons of things. Seemed to me, that the School was trying to weed out the ones who couldn’t take. The next years involved the Profs helping me to develop my own personal vision. The evil critiques was a way to see if you could stand your ground, if you believed in what you were doing or cave in. The best teacher was one who didn’t say a damn thing, he point at something on my canvas, and say, SEE. And I would SEE, AHA! Taught me so much, no language used at all. My school was not based in realism really. Of course, I did have to do tones of figure drawings, etc. Learn perspective. They believed that it is better for a young artists to make 1,000 of pieces, rather than focusing on just one. I did know other Artists who went elsewhere who wanted to focus realism, have made great careers. Yes, though the time was great, to concentrate. Oh yeah, funny thing, that in critiques I ended up learning how to make a verbal argument to back the validity of a painting. What happened I could come up with bullshit, had nothing to do with the imagery, believe myself, and fool others. I have read these things of mine. It is a laugh when I look, and say my God what was I saying. Hey, thank for asking. 🙂

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      6. Hmmm…sounds familiar – I once spoke to a dance student who was so stressed about staying in her program. Apparently, first year, there were about a hundred students, but second year, only 40 got to stay. So maybe in artistic programs, that’s kind of the point (to kick people out, I mean)? Well, the same rule applies to writing, it seems: practice makes perfect. Meaning that, creating 100 pieces of shit is better than constantly working on one masterpiece. LOL, the bullshit that desperate students can dream up…did you end up getting good marks on your crappy papers?

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      7. Wow, thank for the laugh, ‘good marks on the crappy papers’…Hit the funny bone. A lot of them were more like Oral Arguments. Some teachers bought it, others didn’t. Yeah with quantity bit. I mean if you spend eons on the Masterpiece, to find out that it totally missed the mark, you have gotta be dejected. I knew one guy, spent the whole year doing 1 Drawing of Mother Teresa. He flunked out. BUT IT WAS HIS MASTERPIECE. He was so pissed off, and rightfully so.

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      8. I’m happy to oblige your funny bone 🙂 It’s awesome to hear that you suckered most of your profs- it proves that students can beat the masters. OMG that poor guy! I wonder if he ever bounced back with Mother Teresa 2.0…

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      9. Yeah, what is really cool about the Masterpiece fellow is that he ended up going to his Native American Roots, he makes bundles and bundles of these gourd pieces, cranks them out. He is very happy.

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      10. Oh, so he actually did well? Congrats to him! I’m a bit worried about how he would ship out decorated gourds without them breaking…I mean, aren’t they just dried out vegetables?

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