First, let us be clear. Oh, so very clear. Clear like a mountain stream, like a windswept sky, like a razor in the eye (clearly painful…): I have not made it big. This is not about that.
No, I’m not talking about making it big – at least not in the sense that you’re the new moneybags person like the old carpetbagger in the Monopoly game picture.
Oh, I know he’s supposed to represent a Wall Street tycoon, a billionaire banker, a titan of industry. But, dressed as he is, I assume him to be from the turn of the twentieth century, which means his fortune may be as much based on business acumen as on his ability to exploit precious resources, natural and human, to his benefit. A jolly, mustachioed fat cat. Exactly the kind of fellow who got us into this capitalistic conundrum that causes such concern. Crikey!
But, I digress. I guess I’m in a foul mood. I haven’t slept in like, since for ever, even though I go to bed at night and have dreams and wake up in the morning, no good comes of it. May have well as stood up, playing solitaire on my phone. Goodness, what a dreadful passtime that is. The red six goes on the black seven. I went to college for this?
So, here’s the point. I’m cutting to the chase because, frankly, I’m tired of whining. Waaaa, waaaaa, waaaa – hey, here’s something I’ll bet you didn’t know: the real phrase is “there are plenty more fish in the sea than what’s come out of it.”
I wonder if that’s true, given all the eons of fishermen, and the way the Chinese fat cats are overfishing the seas and depleting the squid population. You know, baby squid form the backbone of krill, upon which the entire oceanic food chain relies. Kill that, and…
But, I digress. The point of this post is this, and this is the point: you must make your work, your novel, your screenplay, your Hollywood tell-all, bigger than just you.
Gee, Mr. R, what does that mean?
That means that, as long as it’s on your word processor, or in a pile of papers on your desk, it’s just you. Just you and an empty dream.
When somebody reads it, however, it suddenly becomes bigger than you are. Suddenly it becomes a thing of the world, no longer just inside your head as a hope and tremulous dream.
I write this because my youngest is home from college and critically reading my latest little novel, all 53,428 words of it. And her roommate, who also lives here in town, wants to read it as well. She, too, is a writer, although of the science fiction vein. Ah, to write good scifi. I wrote a scifi screenplay once. I still have it around here somewhere, just to remind me that I shouldn’t write scifi.
So, get that thing out of your mind and into the world. Print it. Give it to somebody to read. Hire somebody. Or put it on the Internet – even if no one reads it, it’s out there to be read, which makes it part of the world. I have two novels out there, read by just under a score of people. But read!
Recently I had to give the very same lecture to my older brother, who has found himself hard aground, beached on the wayside of life. Write, I told him, because he’s a good writer. Get it out of you and into the world. That is the only way you get yourself afloat again. And now he’s started his own blog and seems less stuck.
And you, my friend.
You’re a writer, you know how it goes. Your project can only be as big as you dream it to be. We are nothing without our dreams. You’ve poured your honest sweat and sacrifice into that piece of work. You owe it your dreams.
Hey, I’m in a better mood!