So, here we are at Year Five, the Year of Independence. This is the goal, the island to which we’ve charted our five year course, the one thing we’ve focused on and worked on and planned on.
So, like, what is year five?
Well, before we get there, allow me to congratulate you on getting here. In order to get into the Fifth Year Club, you had to reject the notion that you’re not talented, that you’re not good enough to be an artist. You had to admit to yourself and the world that you ARE an artist, that your talent deserves to be recognized. And then you went out and accomplished a work of art. After that, you repeated your artwork, so that both you and the world see you as a reliable and consistent performer. I congratulate you for that. It’s a brave and noble thing that you’ve done.
Now we get to Year Five. This year, like three and four, may take a little bit more than a year, or it could take a month. This is the year that we move away from that old way of living, and move into an artist’s life.
This is the year that we stop working as a telemarketer and instead find a job that embraces our talent. If you dance, this is the year that you quit your sales job at Spas-R-Us and take a job as a dance teacher, or an assistant dance teacher, or an assistance choreographer, or an independent dance instructor.
If you write, you hang up the telemarketer’s headphones and pick up the pen (or queue up the keyboard) to blog professionally, or to work as I did as a technical writer, or to write copy.
No, this year is not about winning the Pulitzer Prize or a Tony. You’ll get there eventually, but that’s not what you’ll do this year.
This year, the fifth out of five, the last in our five year plan, moves you out of wishing and wanting to recognized as the artist you always knew yourself to be, and into living as one.
This is the year that you apply your art to your life, and your life to your art, so that the two are indistinguishable.
What makes this the year of independence is that you no longer rely on a non-artistic paycheck to make your way. The mundane, artless job you took on to make a living falls away.
Now you’re a working artist. Let me ask you this: at the beginning of a movie, the camera swoops around and zooms in on the film’s title, down there in the corner.
Who did that work? Picasso? Even Spielberg? No. It was a person like you who has a nine-to-five job as video editor, as a digital effects person, as a computer person who’s really good with that kind of work.
That person goes home at night satisfied that they did a really cool piece of work. A work of art. They have a regular job in the arts, and they consider themselves an artist.
That’s you this year. You work in the art department, or the marketing department, making illustrations for the catalog. You might write the captions. You might make up the jingle for the radio ad. You might actually do the voice in the radio ad. You might write the catalog copy.
All these things, all these jobs, are sitting right out there, waiting for an artist to bring them to life.
That artist is you. The time to fill those jobs is now, this year.
That’s what this year is all about. Looking for those opportunities, and putting yourself into them as a working artist.
You didn’t create all that art for the sake of art, did you? What is art if it’s never seen by an audience? This is your year.
This is your year.
That’s what the five year plan has been all about. FIve years ago, you were a regular shmo, just another person. Except that you weren’t. Inside, you knew you had a talent. If you have just found the right circumstance, if your parents had pushed you, if you only said this instead of that. That was five years ago.
Now, you’re working as an artist, Maybe you’re not singing in the Met, but you’re a recognized talent, and you are applying your talent to making your way in the world.
That’s a win/win. Actually, I’m not certain what the other win is, so it’s really just a win. WIN!!!
Now, to go farther, you have another five year plan in front of you. It’s the exact same plan.
Here’s my example:
I wrote two books, Droppington Place and Marigold’s End, and I published them myself at Smashwords. I feel bad, because in total I’ve sold, like 17 copies, and they lie undiscovered to the world.
My five year plan: 1) stop feeling bad about not marketing them, 2) be confident and proud of them, 3)put together and execute a boffo marketing plan for them, 4) repeat that marketing plan until it’s reliable, and 5) accept that in addition to being a technical writer and now an author, I’m also a marketer.
And that’s how it works. I wish you luck in this, your fifth and most successful year EVER!!!!
#booklover #bookworm #bibliophile #authorsofinstagram #droppingtonplace