Writing and the Dilemma of Making Art

I feel like I should write today. Like if I wrote I’d write something good. Maybe because I didn’t write yesterday and I’m not supposed to not write a day. A lot of times I feel I have nothing to say, nothing to offer to a page. There is this desolation inside that says, “Your life is meaningless. You are as empty as a raw hide bone.”

I wonder if art is about skill or transcendence. Is writing about the sequence of words, or a carefully choreographed rhythm, or making the perfect grammatical sentence?  No adverbs, and reduce the adjectives. Don’t talk down to the audience. Study the rules, take notes, go over writing, cross out mistakes. Write so it sounds like how you talk but it isn’t. It is crisper, truer then reality. Edit, read and edit again. And even the dingiest of works begin to gleam.

Or is what makes a good artist the experience of pain and being able to crystallize it and turn it into something amazing?  Walking on the beach of soul, with an understanding of the tides, a reflection to the goings on.

Can you learn by listening to other artist’s stories? Are great artists and writers today in libraries force feeding themselves huge quantities of literature as their brains grow big with character dialogue and setting pieces that they regurgitate and spit back onto their own pages?  Is writing a form of a mother bird feeding her flightless babies-who are hopping and chirping for nourishment? When I think about it, everything in this world is borrowed. At least according to the rules of energy.

And yet when I read something I occasionally get the feeling that here is something new. Where did that come from? There is this concept of the subconscious. The subconscious has been my play buddy on the theories of human thought for a long time. And artists are closer to the shadowy figure then most. As they take its arm, asking it to divulge its secrets and they must learn to open up to the mysteries a little at a time, taking peaks into the dark areas of closet, holding their chest tight in case something jump out at them.

And across the world artists are peaking into one huge closet and taking back the scraps that they sew together into a story that will hopefully sell books. But of all the artists in the world, only a small handful really come out and appeal to a huge group, as people hungrily slurp their writing as something that speaks of something larger. And we don’t need to know what that is, just enjoy the feeding frenzy. But what about all the other pebbles on the shore that don’t shine, but sit dully and are walked by. Are they meaningless? Or are they stepping stones on the way to something more?  Artists step on each other’s backs to get farther then before.

There’s a question I have asked and pondered over many days and with no obvious answer in sight. What is it that people want? Like looking at the tides, staring into the great nothingness and asking for the meaning of life. If the ocean could say anything it would faintly chuckle, when passerby’s asked that question in their vain attempts of trying to ‘figure it out.’


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