the circular runner

does the D in DIY stand for delusional?

In humor, life, media, writers & books, writing on June 14, 2012 at 10:15 pm

Last night, while trying to raise money for my GED graduates, I got into a conversation with a friend.  It was loud at the bar, but not loud enough to stop what is basically the same conversation I have with this friend.  It foes something like this: he tells me he hates his job; he wants to make money doing what he wants to do; i agree; i like teaching, but i want to also make money telling stories.  The conversation ends with us looking into each others’ eyes and asking: but how can we monetize what we like to do?  It’s almost romantic, wouldn’t you say?

But last night, we took on a new theme–one I’ve been thinking about for some time.  I’ve really been getting into the idea of late that with the amazing technologies all around us, artists can get their work out to people without the aid of big distribution mechanisms (JESUS, I sound like a damn MBA student).  But one thought that comes to me as I try to design my plan to get my stories out in the world is this: what stops me from putting out shite that has no value?  It’s a wonderful world where we can all go out into the world and get some money from a Kickstarter campaign, but even if you do get some very nice strangers to fund your romantic comedy about a vegan zombie with a heart of gold, does that mean you should make said movie?  Are you kidding yourself?  How would you know?

I’ve come across two other writers who have tackled this theme today:

1. The Girl in the Hat has a post that bounces up against the same question.  As always, she writes from her own experience and does so with humor.  The only problem with her is that she’s one of those talented writers who writes about not writing well while she actually writes super well.  So, if you’re wondering if you write well, you might not feel so well after you read her entertaining post.  Oh well, get over it.  Go read her.

2. The other writer who tackles the question of self-awareness and writing is Jack Hitt. He has a new book called, A Bunch of Amateurs.  The book isn’t about artists; it’s really about inventors of all sorts.  Since I think artists are inventors of a sort, I think the book is a fit.  I heard Mr. Hitt on the radio speaking about his book, and someone asked him how you could tell the difference between a genius and a hack, and his answer stays with me.  He basically said, you almost never can know for sure.

Great.  So I will keep writing, knowing that I might very well suck it or not.  History is told by the victors.  Take that, Haters of the World.  I will write my Zombie Rom Com and maybe just maybe it will be the next Titanic.  (Irony intended.)


  1. Enjoyed this! I can relate. Thanks for the links to A Bunch of Amateurs and the Girl in the Hat. I think I would like the book.

  2. Interesting. I actually have a calendar reminder that pops up each week and says, “Think about how you can make money from writing/editing/reviewing.” I’m still working on it. And yes, Girl in the Hat is one of my favorite blogs.

  3. I am amazed at how many people write with the intent to be published, then famous, then get a star on the walk of fame.. It is quite admirable to have that drive….I say, keep on doing what you do and one day you will have all I just said.
    I’ll also ck out your links 🙂
    (how is the baby-lad doing?)

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