In the excitement of creation it’s really easy to forget that essentially you’re on your own with that excitement. Unless you are in a band or worked on a collaborative piece it’s pretty much you on your own that did the work, put in the time, and will usually take the risks and reap the benefits. It isn’t that friends, family, and loved ones don’t care and don’t support what you are doing but everyone has their own things going on, their own projects, and their own lives and in the world of social networking EVERYTHING IS IMPORTANT! We have reached a point where we all have the means and ability to tell everyone everything at all times and suddenly everything is desperately important. And you know what, it is, but it isn’t always important to everyone. I know I have been inundated with so many event and rock show and craft show and jewelry party invites that I don’t even pay attention anymore. Too many people invite everyone they know to everything they do and it’s numbed us to things we may actually want to know about. We’re over saturated with information. And even we creators forget that, well, it’s pretty awesome that we did something but someone else feels exactly the same way about their child’s birthday, or an anniversary, or just the fact that they are going to the movies. Often it feels as if we’re all just trying to shout over one another to get heard. And it isn’t that we don’t care about what everyone else is doing but that we just want other people, people we care about and have in our lives, to get as excited about things as we do.
I know for me that I think there’s a bit of a disconnect with how excited people get about my books. Not because they don’t care but because I have put eight books out in a small matter of years. I did this because It took ten years just to get a second book out and now that I can get them out without anyone else having control over that. For me, a writer, that’s HUGE! And I get that to some it just isn’t that exciting anymore. A book a year (and a couple times two books in one year) and the excitement wears off, at least for them. It is old hat. For me though, each one represents something special, something precious. Part of the problem is that, for me, I know books are not my Future. They just are not. I don’t have the time or money to invest in them and their support – something that really does drive me crazy – so it may seem like a ‘hobby’ to some. Something I don’t take seriously. I take my writing seriously but it’s something I have been doing for so long that the lack of any momentum has really made it hard to want to throw parades all the time for my accomplishments. And I also realize that, as much as my friends and family love and support ME the writing isn’t always their cup of tea. And like I said, we all have stuff going on.
We do this for ourselves. Sort of. I write because I love telling stories. I paint because I like to paint. We all do the things we do because they calm us, let us express ourselves, and let us find joy and peace in the day to day madness of life. We do it for ourselves but…that’s not always enough. There is a point in the growth of your art, whatever it is, where you need to share it. For me, to keep focusing as much time on it as I have and want to I need to be able to show myself – OK, there’s a market for all of this weirdness, awesome, keep it up – otherwise I can just write when I have the time and post it on here. If people see it they see it, if not, whatevs. I have been writing long enough that I want people to see the stuff, need them to see it but I also need the validity of people WANTING to read it. Otherwise it’s vanity. I will blog it up like no one’s business out of vanity but to keep putting books out that no one is reading is too far even for me.
We do it for ourselves. We do it because sometimes we need to escape and sometimes we need to celebrate life’s beauty but it isn’t always about us because without sharing what we do it doesn’t mean as much. Art is meant to be shared. It’s the sharing that makes it special. And just like art, our lives are meant to be shared. Our support systems are not always going to understand the things that make us who we are and that make our hearts sing and we won’t always know the same about them. And it is disappointing that not everyone gets as excited about our triumphs as we may but it’s that these people are there at the very worst of times and not just the very best of times that makes them so crucial to our lives. These are the people that keep us grounded and remind us that art isn’t the only thing that matters and even when we’re all yelling at one another on social media it’s that we all care about one another enough to stick around to see past the bad, past the good, and to remain there that means something and sometimes the hardest art of all is mastering the art of being there when someone needs you most.