I am a writer. World, stop trying to change me. Please.
I don’t need to change. I am the living embodiment of change because this is who I am and what I want to be. I make enough money from writing to cover my bills. Sure, I could do what you want world. I could make you feel better about failing your own dreams by taking a job in an office or a popular franchise. But, why would I? Sure, world, I’ve been saving for eight weeks for a new pair of trainers. Sure, there’s no chance of me getting a Playstation 4. But, you know what world? Waiting is good. Waiting is important. Waiting has value. World, I know you don’t understand. I know you are confused. I know you’ve grown to measure success by the size of a bank balance. But, world, you are wrong. True success is what’s achieved by following dreams. You won’t find it on a payslip or at a free staff Christmas party, because success is a feeling. Failure is everything else. Failure is looking back on your life and wondering why you spent so long chasing money you can’t spend when you’re dead. Failure is a person still wondering at the end of their life what they’ll do with it once it begins. Failure is dying with a head full of questions and not a smile because you found your own answer.
World, we only get one shot at this life. So, please stop asking me and other writers/artists the following because you all sound the same and it’s boring:
You got any work yet?
How’s the job hunting?
You’re still young enough to have a career.
I’ve left the newspaper on the side. It’s got some decent jobs in it.
The bloke from Securitas might need someone.
What are you going to do, really though?
Have you thought about joining the army?
Artists – writers, poets, musicians, actors, street performers, lion tamers etc:
Ignore the world. The people who doubt art are often artless. They are experts in other fields, but in the field of art they have a moving mouth but a silent heart. They are bland and grey and dull. They shoot down anything original with carefully harvested piles of bitterness. So, please world – next time you ask a writer or an artist of any kind if they’ve found a real job yet, stop and think before you do. You big silly arrogant drone. Ask yourself what’s so great about your career and life that you think you’re in a position to offer advice. If you think you love your career, that’s great. But remember, it’s not over yet. Wait until you get old and realise the job you love doesn’t love you back. Maybe then, in your old age, once the system has spat you out, you’ll pick up that old battered guitar and learn how to play Stairway to Heaven again. You should encourage artists. You should embrace artists. You should buy their books and share their music, and you should encourage others to do the same.
World, ask yourself if your job really fills your heart with peace, because only if it does, can you ask an artist if they’ve found a real job yet. Remember: if how you live doesn’t fill your heart with peace, you also don’t have a real job. And if you are questioning artists whilst unhappy in your own job, then you are simply working for the system. Trained and brained.
This is you, if that’s what you do: Wake. Coffee. Work. Coffee. Recruit. Work. Sleep. Repeat.
Sounds rubbish to me.
Here is food for thought: artists are the people who have the real jobs. Most writers don’t make much money. We don’t wear suits and own shares. But if you look really closely, you might just realise it’s most of the other jobs that chip away at the will to live.
And meanwhile, it’s the artist, who dances.