Sunday, August 23, 2009

Letters to a young artist

My dreams of become an artist have quickly spiraled into becoming a novelist.  It seems as though I've become less passionate about expressing myself onto canvas and have become more passionate about expressing myself through writing.  An artist is someone who expresses themselves artistically, so I suppose a novelist is an artist.  I just realized I'm not sure I want to seek a career in the visual arts as much as I once longed to do.

I e-mailed Lesley Crewe, a well known published writer from Cape Breton, seeking for advice.  So, this advice I'm going to pass onto you. "If your goal is to be published," Lesley wrote, "then you're in for a lot of misery, because getting published these days is pretty difficult." Hmm.  No... the only reason I write is because I love it.  I certainly never had dreams of being published when I was seven, writing down my heart and soul into tattered pages of my Mickey Mouse diary.  Lesley told me if that's my only goal, that I may be waiting a very long time.  This advice is good for anyone seeking fame in the arts... or anything.  Do whatever you want to do... for yourself;  Don't do it for anyone else or for any other reason than that.

"I you write because you want to, and if you write for only yourself, you'll have wonderful writing experience."

I suppose I strive to be a writer for self fulfillment and if I stumble upon success, then kudos!
"But I have a feeling, if writing is your love, then you'll do it for yourself and no one else. That is the best.  That way you're free and not encumbered by what you think others want from you."  That's excellent advice.  This is part of the reason why my love for painting and drawing has diminished into turmoil.  I was under the constant pressure of having to paint and draw what people wanted me to.  It quickly became a chore - a chore I wanted to have done and over with - a chore I wanted to bury in the past.

"Trust yourself and your talent and know that you are a writer when the writing is all that matters to you.  Getting published isn't what makes you a writer.  If you love it more than anything, then you're already a writer."

We are all writers already.  We're the authors of our own lives. We shouldn't live in accordance to other people.  We should live for ourselves and strive for self fulfillment and our own happiness.  Every day is a new page waiting to be filled... so go out and fill it.

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