I realize a lot of you reading this may be writers, filmmakers, or other artist of a sort. Believe me when I say I realize how easy it is to be discouraged by a lack of results. I’ve received my fair share of rejection letters from representative agencies and unopened packages from publishers. So let me admonish you today to not give up. It is very easy to hit rock bottom when the doors are slammed shut, but you have to go back to the beginning; that first time you put pen/pencil to paper or the first time you turned on that video camera. Why did we do it then?
I had no thoughts of fame and glory when I started writing stories, I didn’t even write them for people to read really. Although I’m sure I bothered a few of my closer friends by constantly making them read my rough drafts. Still it was not for the possible money I was going to make or the notoriety I was going to gain, I did it because it felt good to create something. I was not writing Shakespeare (and I still don’t) I was writing stories that I wanted to read. This is the approach I try to take with most things now, what would I want to read/see. I can’t say I’m more successful for this, but I am happier knowing that I am remaining true to myself and I am still creating worlds and populating them with the heroes, villains, beasts, and places that drift through my mind.
At some point you have to (write, draw, photograph, film) do what you do because you like it. Not to crush any dreams out there but it is not as simple as it seems. Some people come out with one thing and they hit huge and become household names and icons but that does not happen for everybody. To prove my point you should read “On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft” by Stephen King, he didn’t write one story and all of a sudden become the master of modern horror. He struggled and overcame to reach his well deserved status. Sometimes you create the right thing at the right moment and the right person discovers it and you are set and you can pursue the dream that you have been nurturing. Sometimes the moment is not right or the right person does not see it or it is not the right creation. But take heart my creative brethren, your time will come but you must persevere. You have to nurture the dream, especially when others won’t.
I’d like to leave you with a question. If you knew you would never get rich or famous or make a living off of it, would you still create the wonders of your mind for yourself if no one else? I know what my answer is, do you?