Turning over a new leaf, creatively speaking

For a long time, this blog has been a labor of love. Throughout the years I’ve always come back to it. Recently I made the decision to set it aside for a while and work on doing more video work. Unfortunately, for all of us “old-school” types, my experience has been that written content is not as appealing as it once was; video has taken over as the preferred content medium.

Still though, I am drawn back again and again to my writing, and, as much as I do this for others, I do it chiefly for me. I am reminded of a poem, “so you want to be a writer?” by Charles Bukowski. It’s a fatalistic view on, really, any type of creative work.

My goal this time is to re-personalize what I’m doing here, making changes here and there to make this less of a journalistic pursuit, and more of a real, true, expression of life and creativity. In short, less processing. Like my vlog, there will be more formal things, as well as more personal entries, like this. More succinct, brief, and meaningful, I hope. Making something, anything into a production, turns it into more of a labor than an outpouring, and that’s what turns an inspired thought – perfectly fine on its own – into a machined and overly-processed attempt.

Ultimately, the goal with everything I do is to offer something of value to people; to enrich the lives of others. To some, this is merely an update and may mean little. To others, it’s a situation and a place in their journey as a creator they can identify with. But, hopefully for the benefit of all, I leave you with this incredible statement of a poem that can have an impact on anyone in any line of inspired work. I hope you find in it the same inspiration and guidance I have, time after time.

so you want to be a writer?

charles bukowski | 1920-1994

if it doesn’t come bursting out of you
in spite of everything,
don’t do it.
unless it comes unasked out of your
heart and your mind and your mouth
and your gut,
don’t do it.
if you have to sit for hours
staring at your computer screen
or hunched over your
searching for words,
don’t do it.
if you’re doing it for money or
don’t do it.
if you’re doing it because you want
women in your bed,
don’t do it.
if you have to sit there and
rewrite it again and again,
don’t do it.
if it’s hard work just thinking about doing it,
don’t do it.
if you’re trying to write like somebody
forget about it.

if you have to wait for it to roar out of
then wait patiently.
if it never does roar out of you,
do something else.

if you first have to read it to your wife
or your girlfriend or your boyfriend
or your parents or to anybody at all,
you’re not ready.

don’t be like so many writers,
don’t be like so many thousands of
people who call themselves writers,
don’t be dull and boring and
pretentious, don’t be consumed with self-
the libraries of the world have
yawned themselves to
over your kind.
don’t add to that.
don’t do it.
unless it comes out of
your soul like a rocket,
unless being still would
drive you to madness or
suicide or murder,
don’t do it.
unless the sun inside you is
burning your gut,
don’t do it.

when it is truly time,
and if you have been chosen,
it will do it by
itself and it will keep on doing it
until you die or it dies in you.

there is no other way.

and there never was.

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