Tag Archives: Professional

Possibility

Inspiration often comes from the weirdest places. Tonight was a night like a lot of other nights. I was surfing the web when I heard a clap of thunder. Considering how much money I spent on my PC, I saved what I was watching (h3 interviewing Jordan Peterson) to come back to later, shut down my PC, and unplugged it. What to do now? Well, I’m a little hungry. Let’s go to Subway, like I normally do.

I stepped outside, and thought about the thunderstorm. What if I get hit by lightning? You know, many of the people who get hit by lightning are those that least expect it. Who “don’t see it coming”. As soon as I’m comfortable and confident enough to go to my car is when I’m going to get hit by lightning. So I stood there, just outside my door. Do I really want to go to Subway anyway? Am I really that hungry? What are my other options? I could read. But I’m really into what I was going before the storm came. Let’s just go to Subway and see if the storm passes by the time I get back home. I’ll eat inside (as I normally do, anyway) to kill more time, then come back home, plug my computer back up, and get back to watching videos.

And as I stood outside my door, something hit me, quite like a metaphorical bolt of lightning. I finally thought of the words to really describe something about myself that I found quite interesting. I thought of the word “possibility”. I realized that I am a man of “possibility”. There was a “possibility” that I could’ve been hit by lightning. There’s a possibility I could be bitten by a poisonous spider. But my thinking of “possibilities” aren’t all negative. For instance, there is a “possibility” that I could make money from Youtube. There is a “possibility” that I could write something that people enjoy. These possibilities motivate me at least as much, if not more than the negative possibilities.

I also realized this back when I used to play poker. It was rarely for any actual money (that’s a good thing. It’s rather humorous to think that one of the only times that I did play poker for money was in, I believe, 8th grade. I brought the cards, and we were gambling our dimes and quarters of our lunch money. We were finally caught one time, but nothing major came of it. The teacher just, a little frantically, told us to “put that up”. Funny to think of that reaction. I typically ignored “the authorities” (not necessarily cops, but just anyone “in charge” of me) so her horror of our gambling didn’t really affect me. I didn’t see any harm in it, and still don’t).

Poker is a game of probabilities. The least “likely” hands are the “strongest”. There’s certain likelihoods that specific things have taken place. You consider the “unlikelihood” of your own hand, and consider if, whether or not, your hand is “less likely” than your opponent’s. Then, you wager as much “money” (“real” or “fake”) as you think he will also wager. The “unlikeliest” hand wins all of the money: “the pot”.

I became interested in poker because of the “World Series of Poker” on ESPN (which I used to watch religiously). Many people were sitting at tables, playing Texas Hold ‘Em. I was watching ESPN all of the time. Watching football highlights, baseball highlights, and I was starting to get into both basketball and ice hockey. Poker came on, and I was intrigued. I couldn’t stop watching. It was fascinating to me. Hearing the clicks of the chips. The amount of money being bet. It was fantastic.

I tried to learn how the “odds” worked. I don’t particularly care to do math in my head. Paper and calculations are easier and more satisfactory. But one thing has always bothered me about “probabilities”. They aren’t exact. If you have a 35% chance of winning, then you only (yes, I’m using that word) have a 65% chance of losing. So what should you do? Should you always play by the numbers? I have decided “no”. For one, I don’t care about calculating the numbers that much, and, secondly, they aren’t exact. That isn’t very fun to me. Learning the numbers to play by them all of the time isn’t fun to me.

Now, of course, it wasn’t that I was completely against “odds”. I wouldn’t calculate into percentages, but I would still try to determine if my hand was stronger than my opponent’s. I have two pair. Do I really think he has a flush? Do I really think he has a straight? How is he betting? My decisions were not necessarily based on the percentage probability that my opponent had a stronger hand than I had. It was, mainly, based on the strength of my own hand, how my opponent was betting, reading body language (while doing my best to not give anything away by remaining absolutely motionless (which I was pretty good at)), and trying to play mind games with him. It wasn’t that I didn’t think about, say, how many diamonds were left in the deck. But that wasn’t the main factor behind my decision-making process. Only one factor. And other factors were, most of the time, more influential.

You win some, you lose some. A lot of it depends upon who you’re up against. I could’ve “hedged my bets” a little more, but I didn’t want to. I played for a different reason than most. Some things never change…

I’m sure if a “professional” poker player reads this, they’ll cringe. But I’m not a “professional” poker player. I played for fun, the way that I wanted to play. And I played on possibility. These last two sentences are my life motivations.

Any time that I decide to write, I have a temptation to want to address counterpoints. I don’t think there is anything “wrong” with this. In fact, I think it’s a very good thing to do. Attempting to strengthen arguments is a good thing to do. But, too often, I find myself angry, and attempting to justify myself “against the world”. I don’t really think I have much of a choice. Anyone who wishes to do anything outside of the “norm” will receive “advice” that amounts to “Nah, don’t try that. It’s really hard. Do something more ‘normal’.” I can’t take that boring advice. And why should I? Why should odds keep me from playing the poker game and enjoying it? Why should I sit at the table, miserable, and expecting to lose, instead of sitting at the table happy, and expecting to win? If it doesn’t matter to me how much money I lose, then why should I care, as long as I’m enjoying myself? And if you’re so afraid of losing money, why are you even sitting down at the table to begin with? Why are you even in the casino, observing me play poker? If you’re terrified of losing money, why are you even in the gambling building? You can’t watch me play IF YOU AREN’T IN THE BUILDING. I need to treat you as outside of the casino. I can’t hear you, and you can’t ruin my fun… (“Or save you!”, they incessantly add).

I prefer risk to boredom. Not to such an extent that I crave to “defy death”. But my “excitement” is writing, and trying to get people to pay attention to me, mainly through laughing at me, and dreaming of making people laughing at me a full-time job. That’s as “risky” as I get. I’m not getting drunk and driving 140 mph, like many of those who try to give me advice have done in the past. I’m just trying to get people to laugh at me. It’s really not as serious as the “risky” things that these “advice-givers” have done. So I’d appreciate it if they would shut the fuck up, to be frank. I could not give less of a fuck about any “odds”.

I accept that there are different types of people in the world. Some more risk-averse than others. The ways that people make decisions are varied. I fully accept that not everyone will live the way that I want to live, nor would they want to. I fully accept that. But I also accept that I am not going to be happy unless I take control of my personal life. I will not be happy unless this control factors in my nature, which includes my desire to express myself, and my desire to make myself laugh. I will not be happy unless this control factors in my imagination, and my dreams. I will not be happy if this control becomes like people who aren’t me. I will not be happy if this control does not come from me: if it does not feel like it is mine.

Because I am anticipating the “advice-givers”, I will throw them that obvious bone that they salivate after, and say “Yes, I must accept responsibility for my actions.” But I don’t understand why these “advice-givers” are more focused on my life than theirs. Are they so “risk-averse” that they run on autopilot, with no tough decisions to ever make, so they have plenty of time and energy to criticize others? Maybe you need to try something more difficult. Maybe you need a more strenuous hobby. Maybe you need to mind your own business?

No, all I need is a possibility and passion. That’s what I want. I think I can get by with that. Those two motivating factors will help me improve upon what it is that I am doing. Life is unbearably monotonous when you’re full of dread. If you don’t have anything to look forward to, and instead, ceaselessly focus on your job, and your bills, life becomes very dark. Even a man who hates his job and is in debt can look forward to that six-pack of beer when he gets home. Maybe that’s what gets him through life, and his day. Everybody’s got their “thing” that gets them through life. And these “things” are as diverse as the people who use them. Passion, for me, is the only thing that makes unavoidable monotony even the least bit bearable. And I have decided that I will not suffer, and try to live without it, for any reason: particularly to satisfy “advice-givers”.

I know that not all “advice-givers” are trying to be dissuasive. Some of them are trying to be “persuasive”. “Cody, I’m fine with you having this goal. But here’s how you can achieve it better. Just do all of these things, and stop doing all of these things that you’re actually doing, and then, you probably won’t get there, but I accept that you aren’t going to stop doing it, so here’s the best advice that I can give you.” No. My life isn’t about the destination. It’s about the journey. I’ve got a “dream” destination. But even if I don’t get there, that’s the journey I’m going to take, and I’m going to fucking enjoy it.

Enjoy your almost unbearable misery. Maybe we’ll see each other on the other side, and then, maybe, we’ll relate to each other a little more. And maybe you won’t be as miserable as you are now.

And, of course, I should also add that having a “hyper” sense of humor as I have makes this journey a helluva lot easier. I try to find humor in everything (because that’s my nature, and also, because boredom is constant with me). I want to keep developing my sense of humor. And having a sense of humor is a great way to deal with the “advice-givers”, whether they be “haters” or “justified”. Maniacally laughing to myself, just to confuse them, makes it all all-the-more worthwhile.

And, I suppose, I will conclude with the obvious message that the unlikeliest events are the strongest, most powerful ones, when they happen: whether those “events” are positive or negative. I suppose you could’ve been smart enough to draw that connection yourself, but I decided to bash you over the head with it, anyway. Let’s call it “payback”. Besides: I need to start learning to write more words, anyway. Even if they’re garbage. But that’s a tale for another time…

I could also do the same thing, beating you over the head, and say “I’ve already made it clear to you that anxiety is part of my ‘possibility’ philosophy, as evidenced by the very beginning of this. Don’t you think I’ve considered the ‘possibility’ that everything I’m working toward will be nothing, and that I’ll regret all of this? Do you really think I haven’t considered that possibility? Do you really think I’m that ignorant, ye of little faith? Do you think that I haven’t considered that at all? Or is it possible that I have considered this, and yet, for some reason that you don’t seem to understand, have still decided that it is worthwhile to pursue?”

“Cody, when are you going to stop writing about ‘possibility’? When are you going to start creating work that is actually substantial?” So naive……

“Are you saying that this piece of shit you’ve just written here is substantial?” (starts laughing)

No response.

“Wow, he actually does!” (more laughter)

No response.

Let them think what they wish.

The truth exists within the heart.

Advertisements

On Mental Independence

To be human is to be individual. Although all humans share a common humanity (that’s why they’re called “humans“), and this fact is used to consider individual human beings as part of a collective, the truth of the matter is that each human is an individual at the core of his or her being.

To be an “individual”, one must have a mind, which creates thoughts, desires, and plans and takes action. Among these desires is a sense of belonging among fellow humans. Humans have an intrinsic social need: a need to be accepted on some level. We are created in such a way as to need communication, both in speaking and in listening. The thoughts, desires, plans, and actions among humans differ. This is another characteristic of humanity, and a byproduct of the fact that humanity is composed of “individual” humans. If humans were not individual in nature, but were rather homogeneous, such as atoms sharing the exact same molecules and molecular structures, then concepts such as the ones mentioned above would be mute.

But, as it stands, humans are individual in nature; and individual with a desire for sociability and beloningness.

With the individual nature of the thoughts, desires, plans, and actions of humans, comes many influences. Although each person has his or her own will, that does not mean that our wills are not influenced by external forces (forces outside of our bodies). Other humans influence through their words, actions, etc. We react to each other. And we are reacted to when we react.

But despite all of this complicated interplay among humans, there is still a desire to be individual. To be independent. To be one’s own person. And this is not to say that in order for one to be an individual, one must not be influenced by outside forces. For this would be impossible. In that case, babies must not learn, because almost all of the knowledge that they obtain comes from outside forces.

And, in fact, it is impossible to not be independent. This is another aspect of our humanity: being individual in nature, we are inherently independent.

So what is all of this about?

To preface this, I would say that given all of the concepts and ideas that very intelligent people have communicated throughout mankind’s history, I have no expectations that my own ideas will have any influence that I would deem significant. Sure, if one person is influenced in a manner that we both deem positive, it could be argued that that would be “significant”, because the well-being of each and every person on the planet is important.

But you get my point.

However, for whatever reason, I have a natural desire to think and express my thoughts.

My thoughts, as are everyone else’s, are independent.

And one of my desires is to write my thoughts down.

I have no explanations as to why my thoughts may be of superior objective quality to anyone else’s thoughts, so I’m not going to attempt to argue that here.

And if you were to ask me how I could characterize my thoughts generally, I could only come up with vague descriptions such as “unique” (which isn’t very unique, by the way).

However, I have them, and I think them. And they exist.

Next, I have a natural desire to express those thoughts. I have a feeling that my thoughts have enough quality to be shared to others (and some agree with me and some disagree with me). And so, I share them. And I share them and I share them and I share them, in the hopes that someone can receive them and say “Hmm…he’s got a good point. I never thought of it that way.” Or “You know, I’ve always thought the same thing, but he elaborated upon my original thought in an effective way.”

Don’t misunderstand me here: I’m not simply looking for praise for praise’s sake. If you will recall what I stated earlier, I have thoughts which I think are worth sharing, and a desire to share them. It’s not so people can tell me how smart I am. It’s more than that. It’s just who I am. It’s just me. It is me to think, think that my thoughts are of fairly intelligent quality, and then attempt to share those thoughts with others in the hope that people can make sense of them and, even perhaps, learn something.

And, once again, this isn’t to try to “prove” to people how smart I am.

It’s just naturally who I am.

Once again, you may be asking yourself:

What is his fucking point?

I’ll try to begin explaining that to you now.

I have always struggled with being mentally independent. At least in some ways. There are some ideas that I would say I have “independently” (meaning void of any anxiety-peer pressure driven acceptance), and some that I do not. I have no way of describing any defining criteria between the two, because I’m not sure if there is any, besides just a recognition that one is one and the other is the other.

But, at least for me, it is extremely difficult to be mentally independent in a way that I would consider to be “independent”. I have always attributed this difficulty to two things: a desire to understand objective truth, and assuming that people are well-intentioned.

Let me explain what I mean a little bit further. I’ve always loved learning. I love knowing truths. I think many people share those same loves. So, I’ve always tried to absorb knowledge, from whatever I could. To be mundane, this would include anyone speaking to me (as a child: keep this in mind); basically, any form of information that I absorbed through multiple forms of media (books, magazines, etc.). And, I always assumed that people were telling the truth. Or, at least trying to. But I encountered a couple of problems along the way, which I couldn’t begin to comprehend until I got older.

The first problem that I encountered was that some people are just fucking stupid. I kind of knew this when I was younger, but I almost felt bad for knowing this truth (sympathy for them because they were stupid), so I tried to ignore this truth so that I didn’t feel like a bad person. But the truth is the truth. Acknowledging that a stupid person is stupid is simply that: an acknowledgement that a stupid person is stupid. That in and of itself is not necessarily a value judgment upon said person. It is simply an undeniable fact. This was very hard for me to accept when I was younger.

I always wanted everyone to be the best at everything, but people are just different, and differ in ability, desires, etc. I felt bad when I felt like I had an advantage in, say, intelligence, as opposed to someone else. Just a general sadness. It wasn’t fair that they were born less intelligent than I was. And I didn’t think it was fair because I knew of the advantages one would have when one is intelligent, and neither of us really had any control in our respective intelligences. We were created that way through genetics and our environment, and didn’t have much (if any) say so in the matter. That was always soul-crushing to me.

Likewise, I felt bad for people who were physically disabled. I could go on and on and on about the things that I felt sorry for.

And although I still feel that sympathy in many different respects (nowadays, it more manifests itself towards criminals), I, through what I can only attribute to age, experience, and various lessons people have tried to teach me along the way, have learned to accept (at least, more so than I used to) the differences in advantageous and disadvantageous traits and life experiences from one human being to another.

But one thing that I’m not content with my grasp on is my own personal mental, ideological independence.

I realize that, at the time of this writing, it is only 5 days until my 24th birthday (it, apparently, took me over a year to finish this). And I realize that’s a pretty young age to expect “complete mental independence” (for lack of a better phrase due to laziness). But still, one area of my life that I would like to develop is mental independence. All humans, as they age from children, to adolescence, to adulthood, wish to be mentally independent. Once again, it’s part of our nature. But I think I have a way of expressing this more effectively than most (although there are surely writers who could communicate this more effectively than I).

I realize this is a very humorous thing to say, but the thing that scares me the most about independence is the responsibility. I just don’t fucking trust myself. I know how I am. I remember my history. I remember my mistakes, and how devastating they were for me. The more I tried to control a situation, the more shitty it became. Once I “shirked responsibility”, the shit was still there. But it was more manageable. I could just ignore it until it went away. The idea of being in control never appealed to me. There were several things outside of my control (such as the relationship between my parents), and the more I tried to control something, the more shitty I felt when things didn’t go my way. So, I just accepted the shittiness. And that was really hard to do. There is nothing more devastating than feeling like you have done a good job, only to find out that you hadn’t. I feel like this was the case for me in school a lot. I was a smart student, and I wouldn’t say that this disappointment was the majority of the time, but when it happened, it seemed to cripple me. For instance, reading the wrong chapter for homework. That type of failure was always crippling to me. Why? Why couldn’t I just say “Woops”, and move on? I think a part of it had to do with always being told how smart I was by teachers, and hearing my mom talk to other people about me. I just set my own personal standards too high (especially for my age). I couldn’t tolerate mistakes. And it all ate me alive.

The carefree attitude saved me, although it also caused a lot of problems. Instead of feeling like shit for not getting the grade I wanted, or for making a mistake, I just stopped caring. I stopped caring about my grades. Luckily, I didn’t flunk everything. But straight As went to Bs and Cs really quickly. And I was content with that. I didn’t care about school anymore. The subjects were boring, and I already knew what it was like to “Ace” everything. Why did I need to continue doing that? I didn’t know. And, so, I stopped trying as much.

But even when I did try, I still made mistakes. And it made me angry. So, I “ragequit” again. That has been my modus operandi for a long time now: just quitting everything. Barely getting by. The idea of college was terrifying to me when I was in high school. “You mean I’m going to have to decide what I’m going to do with my entire life? I can’t even remember what page I was supposed to read for homework!” I had zero confidence in myself as a decision maker. I believe, knowing my history, this was justified. My “decision” was to coast, and I know I got pretty lucky along that coast. But still, I made the “decision” to coast, and it seemed to work out (in some areas). Of course, every decision will lead to mistakes somewhere, and this was certainly the case for me.

Coasting has worked out for me, but I think it is, at least to a significant degree, at its end. “The writing is on the wall.” I can see, pretty clearly, what my main option is for the future. It is in contrast with what I dream to do. I will probably have to do both simultaneously, and it is very probable that my dreams are going to be opposed to what it is that I ultimately have to do. My only option is to try to do both simultaneously until the dream can become the job, and that is uncertain (unlikely, most would say. I know I won’t succeed without optimism, however). All of my thoughts need to develop over time. I have to figure out how I want them to develop. I’m still so anxious about what it is that I want to do that this anxiety freezes me. I want to write about “big” things. And when I try to go down the path of thinking about them, I become anxious. Either because I don’t have everything that I want to say figured out, or I start thinking about after the piece becomes completed, and what is going to happen. It is hard to concentrate. In my opinion, I think this is a good thing in several ways. I am cognizant of the sands of time ticking away. I realize that the journey is long. Doing what I want to do is going to be really fucking hard. And it is all for an uncertainty. It is hard to concentrate when these factors constantly occupy your mind. The only saving grace from this as far as the work is concerned is the joy that you obtain from doing the work. But I don’t want to treat my work as digging in the sand with a stick. I treat my work as a future career. That’s my attitude. “How is it going to work?” “How can you expect to-” blah blah blah. I don’t care to listen to your concerns, regardless of your motivations.

I want to write my thoughts down. This means that they need to be developed. This just takes fucking time. Learning takes a lot of time. It takes a lot of labor. It’s just hard to learn something. It’s even harder to write about something. I think that all writers are “teachers”. When you write something, you want to impart ideas to the reader. You want these ideas to be beneficial to the reader. You don’t want to have the reader say “Yeah yeah yeah, I already know this”, and stop reading what you wrote. You want the reader to say “Huh. That’s good.” That’s hard to do. There’s so many good writers out there that the prospect of you being a good teacher is slim. But, once again, that’s where the love of the work comes into play. In a sense, it doesn’t matter how good of a teacher I am. Even if I’m a shitty teacher, I’m going to keep writing. I’ll keep getting bad reviews, but I’ll keep fucking writing. Because I love to do it. I firmly believe that persistence is what I’m going to need to succeed as much as I can succeed, whatever level that ultimately happens to be. I would encourage everyone to write about how shitty I am as a “writer” or a “teacher”. Start your own blog called “Cody Alan Reel SUCKS”, and lay forth your arguments as to why I’m a lazy fucking sexist neckbeard who lives in his mom’s basement and is going to be flipping hamburgers (1, 2) his whole life. Maybe you’ll end up being right. Don’t you want to be among the first to be able to take credit for your predictions?

Of course, if one is going to take action, one must assume responsibility. There’s always some difficulty with this. Even when one takes responsibility, there is a guilt that comes with it. Or a somberness, when facing punishment. I can’t say that I’ve ever had, nor kept, many responsibilities in my life. The fact that I’m struggling to think of them really signifies that to me. I would characterize myself as a “weasel”: I’m always able to “weasel” my way out of things. I’m thinking something like chores. I never really did them. For one, some of them didn’t make sense (and still don’t). For instance, making one’s bed, or cleaning one’s room. Making one’s bed makes zero sense to me. It gets messed up every night. It doesn’t matter how it looks in the morning. And as far as one’s room goes: well, it’s my room. Sure, my parents owned the house. But it was still my room. The toys are going to come right back out the next day. So why not just leave them out? It still doesn’t make any sense to me. Authoritarianism is not a valid argument. Why should I put the toys away? “Because I said so” should never suffice for a youngster. If you can’t explain why something needs to be done, then it doesn’t need to be done. Teach your child how to reason: not how to fear authority. I’ve weaseled my way out of many other things besides chores, but I won’t get into them all now (chores were certainly a significant part of it; especially early on in life).

I suppose I should talk about things that I was “responsible” for in the past: namely, times in which I got in trouble. There were plenty of fights with my brother that I was responsible for. But the main thing I can think of for getting in trouble and being “responsible” for is porn. I don’t recall a time where I felt like I was “in trouble” before it came to porn. Looking back on it, there was definitely an overreaction. So I drew some pictures of boobs as a kid. Why do I need to see a guidance counselor because of that? So I planned on bringing some porn over to a friend’s house. What’s wrong with that? I can’t describe the embarrassment when I was “discovered”. I can’t even remember what was said to me at the time, I was so embarrassed. All I remember was the porn fell out of my shirt, I didn’t get to go over to my friend’s house, my mom called my friend’s parents and apparently he was asked about the porn, and I don’t know what else happened. I think they really made a big stink out of nothing. Maybe that was just my young mind overreacting due to embarrassment, but it seems to have been made a bigger deal than it actually was. So I was “responsible” for drawing pictures of boobs and trying to take porn over to a guy’s house. Big deal. (I can’t remember exactly how old I was at the time. I think I was in my very early teens: maybe even 12). I think this is partly why I still have a problem with “responsibility”: inconsistent, nonsensical parenting. My mother certainly provided a lot of that, and confused the Hell out of me. Then, there was the parents fighting, pitting one against the other, then, as a kid, I had to “take sides”, yadda yadda yadda. Except it wasn’t like a regular divorce with two “normal” parents: at least one of them was insane.

I seem to be finding it harder and harder to write about anything. I would hope that I become a better reader and editor as time goes along, but I continually find that things that I wish to write about overlap so much that distinguishing between things to separate them into “pieces” becomes very difficult. It truly feels like I just want to write about my life, my one life, and it is hard to write about my “life” in separate pieces. It is hard to decide how to frame each piece, or to keep it “on track”, when I feel like there are so many things that I want to say that intertwine.

One of the hardest things for me to deal with with regards to mental independence is how to handle other people. I envision someone screaming dumb things at me an inch from my face. Or punching me in the face. I desire to express myself honestly. And I accept that there will be people that hate it. But some of those crazies will think it is a good idea to stab me in the stomach. That’s the risk you have to take when you wish to speak honestly. (Or when your sense of humor is as fucked up as mine is). But it certainly occupies a significant portion of my thinking when I desire to write something, or do something.

One good thing about getting older is that you start to learn who, in your past, was wrong. As I write this, I think of the times that I tried to write in my mid-to-late teens. Writing was so much harder back then. Who was I writing for? I didn’t know. Well, myself, obviously. But who was going to read it? I had no idea. The few that did read it made me feel very self-conscious. I don’t think the small sample size understood what I was trying to say (and clearly, my inability to articulate myself had a significant role in this). But what changed in those 9, 10 years? Why am I so much different today than I was then? It bugs me that this development is “out of my control”. It just happened. Naturally. I just naturally became a better writer because I got older (and practiced a little bit). My language skills got better just because I had more experience, my brain chemistry is different, etc. That’s such an annoying, hopeless position to be in. To just be stuck as a shitty writer, with the only “saving grace” being time. That’s so fucked up. Why can’t I be the best writer that I will ever be right now? Sure, that thought frightens me. But why can’t I be at my max level all of the time? Why must I grow? Why can’t I control my growth? That tortures me. There are some things that become worse the more that you try to control them. That is a significant theme throughout my life. I have accepted it, and have become moulded by that philosophy. And, in my opinion, it is completely justified based on my history. It is how I have found my personal level of “contentment”. But it eats me alive sometimes to have development out of my control. Sure, it isn’t completely out of my control: because I desire to write, and thus, write, it will inevitably get better over time with practice. So what I’m getting better at is within my control. But so many things aren’t. And it is those that bug me.

I deplore when I realize that I was wrong in the past. I’ve had some pretty weird viewpoints about life that are really hard to put into words. I think that is what my mission shall be: trying to explain my past ways of looking at the world. I think they’re quite interesting, and I don’t care if you disagree with me. It is really weird, the things you think when you are extremely mentally dependent. Some really fucked up things can happen very easily. It is quite frightening.

Once again, there are so many different directions that I could take this that I find it hard to decide which way to go. I had certain mindsets in my past that I maintained, even if all they produced was failure. My mind was constantly focused on Hell. And so, naturally, the thought of Hell affected almost all of my perspectives about everything. I don’t really need to lay them out here: it’s the same old suspects. But some of them truly are odd. The way it affected my overall perspective is so strange. It produced this deep skepticism that still remains to this day. It was an ethical skepticism: “Is this person a Christian? Is this person a Christian? Is this person a Christian?” The skepticism that remains today isn’t about whether or not a particular person is a Christian. But my cynicism definitely remains. And it is so odd to me. Over and over, I find people to be trustworthy. But I’m still painfully cynical. I’m content with quite a bit of my cynicism, but I find myself in situations often where I’m asking myself “Why am I being so cynical right now? What has this guy done to me?” It is a conservative hangover. It’s very fucking odd.

I am looking forward to my confidence building over time. “Coasting” has been my saving grace. I’ve been very lucky. I don’t handle failure very well. And it has always seemed like the more I have tried to fix something, the worse it made it. But my philosophy has changed over time, and I’ve “settled in” to something that works for me. That’s what we all long after: just that way of moving throughout the world that satisfies us the most. I think I’m pretty good right now with what I have. I want to explain it and elaborate on it more throughout time. And, of course, I hope to be able to write about more subjects, and just get better overall. I’m confident that it will happen with time and practice, even if there are many things that I write that I end up not happy with, for various reasons.

I love writing, and I just look forward to becoming a better thinker. I accept the fact that I’m repetitive, but I believe it is all related. In my heart, I believe that every “repetition” is a building block upon an entire life’s work. I can’t ask someone “Hey, do you think this builds upon this? Or did I just repeat myself?” I have to interpret my work how I wish. And I need to make my work fully my own, to my full potential. That’s (one of) the lifetime challenges……

I want to be a good thinker. And I want to be able to say “Hey, here are my thoughts.” I hope they can be received honestly. And that’s all that I can hope for from them (besides the dreams of them somehow paying the light bill down the road).

A Declaration of Independence.

Education.

A Philosopher’s Mind.

Highly Sensitive Mind.

Analyzing My Decision-Making.

Religio.

My poetry.

On Writing with Nothing to Say

Why do I desire to write when I have nothing to say? Or, rather, why do I have something to say when I don’t desire to write? I constantly find myself in one of these two camps as a writer. Sometimes, such as right now, I desire to write. I open up my works of fiction in progress, then quickly close them. “Oh yeah. I don’t know how to write. The fiction that I’ve written up to this point isn’t very good, and I still haven’t even fixed those. Why would I start something new?” So I make a note, to remember to do the new idea eventually, open up the current works in progress that need to be fixed, and then think “Oh yeah; this sucks”, and then close it out.

Then I try to find other things to occupy my time. Music, video games. Anything but writing. Or, at least, if I do write, it needs to be something simple, and easy. Like a status update on Facebook or Twitter. Then, when I desire to write things that have more meaning, I think of all of the writers of history, and all of the writers of today. “Oh yeah. There’s a lot of people that have had things to say. And I haven’t read them. Surely those writers are much better than I. So why don’t I spend time reading them instead of writing myself?” And so, I read a little. I read what I’m interested in. Read about economics. But it starts to become repetitive. “Oh yeah. I already believe this. I already know this. So why am I rereading it?” Then, I think “You know, I’m not sure if some of this stuff written by others is ever going to be read by others. Who is ever going to read Rothbard?” I rarely think of all of the people that have read Rothbard. Just all of the ones that have no idea who he is, or those who levy character assassinations against him, purposefully (or unintentionally) misconstruing his words. And I get very dejected. What’s the point of writing if that is going to happen to you, ultimately? If it happened to Rothbard, a much better writer and thinker than I, then why would I write at all? That line of thinking prevents me from writing quite often. Indeed, with regards to fiction, the likes of King and Rowling create the same line of thought within myself. “I could never write as much as Stephen King does. I’ll probably never be as good as either one of them. So why do it at all?”

My personal philosophy regarding doing what you enjoy is that you have nothing to lose by trying to make a career out of it. You have nothing to lose by trying to sell your passion. Even if you never do, you have nothing to lose by trying to do so. So that’s my attitude, with things that I love to do. Writing, acting, comedy. My belief is: why not treat it as a business? If I’m going to do it anyway, without getting paid for it, I might as well treat it as a business. I realize this is counter-intuitive to many business-oriented people. Of course, economic activity exists because trade takes place. If not enough people are willing to trade for your services, you’ll have to adopt your services to something more lucrative if you decide it is worthwhile to do so. And many people do. Everyone does, to a certain extent. We all have to live. Shall we grow our own food? Or join retail (or any other line of work that isn’t directly “growing our own food”) to buy the products of those that do grow food in exchange for other goods and services? But I love to write. I do it for free. So I might as well dream of attaining “professional status” someday, regardless of how realistic or unrealistic that dream is.

I often get dejected as a writer. I write something that I think to be good, and it goes undiscovered. Of course, considering all of the writing that exists in the world, this is no surprise. It’s part of the fun of being a writer. Or of doing anything, really, that you wish to become a “professional” at. I think of all of the famous writers that I’ve read very little or none of. All of the “classic” authors in the world. The best writers the world has ever known. I’m entering into this field. I am a writer. They are writers. I am competing for attention. For readers. They’ll always win. And that’s fine. But I still write. I still want to get involved. I still want readers. “Professional” status. Regardless of how much better the writers are than I, I still want in. I’m a child that wants to play with “the big boys”. And I enjoy it and love it.

I get pretty exhausted with reading. I prefer to write than read. Despite the fact that I’m sure my words are not going to be as good as others, I still desire to write more often than read. I guess I’m just relegated to writing shitty words. I guess, as long as I love them, that’s what should really matter to me.

So if I desire to write, and love to write, what should I do when I know my writing sucks? When I’m not willing to partake in the “literary world”? What should I write when I have nothing to say? I don’t know. I write things like this. My writing will, more than likely, never be widely read, and, when actually read, will probably be criticized instead of enjoyed. I’m not saying that’s unethical, of course. I’m just merely stating the fact, and that dejects me. Does my writing deserve to be enjoyed? Of course not. I wouldn’t suggest that anyone enjoy shitty writing. But it’s my desire to not be shitty that motivates me. It’s not necessarily the reason why I write, but why wouldn’t that be an end goal that I wish to achieve through writing?

Of course, all writing is thoughts. So if there is a good book, there was a good mind behind it. Clearly, my mind pales in comparison to many of the great minds of history, and of the present. So if I want to write, it has to come from within my own mind. What is in my mind? Well, the only way I can convey that is through words, and that’s what I struggle with the most. I struggle with explaining what is in my mind. And, of course, that is necessary for writers to do. Writers must explain what is in their minds.

One problem currently, that I’m slowly attempting to remedy, is that I’m not educated enough. I don’t know enough. What do I want to write? And how do I want to write it? I’m slowly developing these things, but the main thing that I know is that I just love to do it. I love to write. It matters little what it is, as long as I’m writing. But, clearly, every piece of writing has to be about something, so I have to figure out what I’m going to write about. It’s kind of odd to me, in a way. I love writing more than what it is I’m writing about. That feels very odd. Of course, there are times when what I want to write about is more enjoyable to me than actually writing it out itself. In fact, this is the case quite often, as I can’t figure out how to start, elaborate, make it better, etc. Or I get bogged down with what I mentioned above (how many writers there are, how much better they are than me, etc.). It’s a constant conflict. I either love the act of writing, with nothing to say, or I have things to say, but don’t feel like I have the ability to say them the way that I wish to. Deep down, I know this is in the heart of every writer, if not all of the time, at least a significant percentage of it. All creative types struggle. We have a desire to create, but often, we struggle. We struggle in our technical abilities, or through an internal conflict of visions. We always struggle. This is part of being a creative type.

The answer, for me, is going to come very slowly. Very slowly will I begin to read more often. I’ll be able to figure out my personal philosophies regarding reading. I’ll develop my thoughts into more concreteness, and then, work on developing the tools to express them as effectively as I would wish to do.

There are, of course, many obstacles. Getting better as a writer is a giant obstacle. My own personal thoughts about where I “fit in to the grand scheme of things” is a giant obstacle. Justified self-deprecation is an obstacle. My hopes and dreams are an obstacle. My personal beliefs are an obstacle. All of these are obstacles. Ultimately, I’ll have to find my way through them. Contemplation is one of the only ways to do this. It’s all up to me. All up to my own fucking little head. I have to do this all by myself. I have to figure out which books to read, what personal philosophies I wish to adopt, what I wish to write, how I wish to feel about my finances, how I fit into the “writing” market (and other markets). It’s all a process, and this is merely a step in it. Despite my lack of financial success, I’m very happy with my work up to this point. I wouldn’t trade it to be more successful, because the purpose of starting out on this journey of my work was doing what I enjoyed doing. And I have enjoyed it. I do enjoy it, immensely, even if I’m not making any money from it. I am confident this will change with time and practice, regardless of how “unrealistic” it is in the eyes of others. But the point is that even if they are right, I am also right. Of course, I’d love to make a living through writing, comedy, and acting. It is one of my goals to. But even if I don’t, I kind of don’t care. Once again, I have nothing to lose by adopting an attitude of optimism regarding financial success in my arts. But even if I don’t, I’m still going to do them. I don’t understand why more people don’t adopt this attitude. I’m sure there are many that do have that attitude, and that’s a good thing. And, of course, values differ from individual to individual, and yes, we all do have to “make a livingsomehow. But individual value scales come into play. Some are willing to work less hours to paint pictures that never sell. Some are willing to sacrifice hours of leisure for more money. It’s all up to each individual to decide what values he or she has, and creating, through writing and comedy, is certainly something that I value very, very much.

It may be asked why I don’t go to school to learn to be a better writer. My answer to that is that I enjoy being my own teacher; completely in control of my own education. Deciding who to read, and when. I want to do everything by myself. That’s also something that I value very, very much. My own independent education. I’m not saying that people who choose to go to school aren’t acting “independently”. I just prefer to do things by myself, and I don’t want to go to “school” for things that I can learn for myself through reading, practice, and self-contemplation.

It remains to be seen what will happen, as is always the case. What I read will shape me. What and when will it happen? I read a little, as I said. About economics, particularly. It’s definitely influenced me. I’ve read a little fiction. In the process of reading a “classic”. I hope that I can learn something from it. Not only do I want to be entertained by it, but I read it as a teaching tool. I read it in the hopes of absorbing what makes it “good” for myself, so I can regurgitate it in my own way. That will probably be what leads me to read more often, as I think is the case with my best friend. He’s fully entrenched in the “reading/writing” world, and I haven’t been up to this point. But I am desiring to get better as a writer, and I can hear his voice in my head as I write that. I think we both want to become better writers through reading. And I think we both recognize the seeming futility of our endeavors. I’ve heard him speak many times about the number of writers there are in the world; the number of books, written by living and deceased. And he’s always talked about how behind he is with reading. How many books there are that remain unread. How he’ll never be able to figure out how to deal with it all. There will always be books, authors, undiscovered. Where do you begin? What perspective do you develop about it all? It’s always bugged him, and now, it’s starting to bug me. The things I have written here, have been discussed by him, to me, for quite some time now. Seems as if he’s influenced me; or, rather, that we were more alike than I realized back then.

So, I suppose, that we both, and all other writers alike, are stuck in the writing struggle, where we read, write, and try to figure out our place among all of the other readers and writers in the world.

A small note: in addition to what I’ve said about historic and current authors, one thing that I also think about is the fact that “history repeats itself”. Especially in economics, my particular subject of interest in reading about. On the one hand, it all feels so futile. We’re all just going back and forth about the same arguments that have always existed. But on the other, if evil won’t rest, neither should good. It’s all just exhausting, ultimately.

Writer.

Writing.

Bulleted lists of what I like about writing and what I hate about writing.

Things I hate about writing:

– organizing
– rereading
editing (the inability to make a decision, having to figure out how to fix something because it doesn’t make sense, and realizing that I have to write A LOT MORE to connect the dots I was attempting to create, but I don’t have the words for the thoughts in my head)
– shit vocabulary
criticism (I typically ignore it and don’t really care for it: I do what I want)
– fear of dedication of time and energy towards it because I “may be missing out on something else”
– comparing myself to other writers
– stressing out over my lack of financial compensation for writing
– sitting and thinking without writing (I’m excrutiatingly impatient)
– explaining to others “what I meant”
– feeling like what I’ve written isn’t original; that the subject matter has been discussed since the dawn of time, and my opinions regarding the subject have been rewritten over and over and over since the dawn of time
marketplace competition

– wanting to go 15 million directions within a piece and then getting confused
– unintentionally repeating myself
– rereading
– editing (the inability to make a decision…)
– the fear of being “better” than someone due to receiving praise from multiple people about one piece
– getting stuck; not knowing where to go next, and thinking about thinking about it (and feeling crazy for thinking and thinking and thinking about it and going deep into the rabbit hole…)
– feeling mentally exhausted before I’m finished with a piece
– people misinterpreting my words
– realizing that people will want to kill me for my words
– feeling uninspired
– forcing myself to write when I’m not “feeling it”
– self-doubt
– realizing that by saying one opinion, I’m going to open myself up to other arguments that I either KNOW I can defend myself against (but the process is so exhausting, and adds SO much extra work for just one opinion) OR I want to express an opinion that I know I won’t be able to effectively defend and then……I’ll feel like an idiot
– self-doubt with word choice
– reading what I have written, feeling like it doesn’t make sense, rewriting it, then realizing I’ve changed my original meaning, so I change it back to the original way it was, it makes sense, and then I wonder what in the fuck I’ve just done (drives me mad; the BIGGEST fucking problem on this whole goddamn list…INFURIATING)
– COMING UP WITH NEW IDEAS AND NOT FINISHING THE OLD ONES. This happens to me more frequently than anything on this list, mainly because I get so frustrated with the previous point that I just end up doing THIS point OVER and OVER and OVER and OVER and OVER…JESUS FUCKING CHRIST
– hearing voices in my head from the past mocking me for being “perfectionistic” when I start to think about which punctuation mark to use, etc.
– feeling crazy for working on multiple pieces at once while also coming up with ideas for brand new pieces all at the same time and not knowing how to fucking organize it all (so I end up “taking a break” lmfao), which leads to me never getting anything fucking done…
– confronting my emotions when it comes to my religious past
– people “trying to get to know me better” because they like my work
– not knowing what to do when people talk to me
– getting confused because ideas for multiple pieces come to my head at once and I can’t keep them organized
– not knowing when something is “finished”
– feeling like I’m a bad writer for realizing that I need to make a change
– my perfectionism regarding realizing I have made mistakes (SO exhausting……)
– making mistakes…
feeling like I’m bragging when I’m simply stating what I can do and what I feel like I am good at

WordPress specific:
– linking
– coding

(I’m exhausted, I’m tired of thinking of this, I don’t want to wait longer and start doubting myself, so I’m going to hurry up and publish this: my typical “writing mentality”…)

Things I like about writing:

– the ideas
– feeling smart
– feeling funny
– feeling good
– the tactile act of typing
– the way my handwriting looks
– dreaming of the future
– trying to be profound
– feeling original
– having people say “Wow, that was good. I never thought of that before.”
– people telling me how much they laughed at my jokes
dreaming of being wealthy and relaxed
completing an idea and feeling happy with it
– the thought of people discovering my works years after they have been written
– talking about topics that I enjoy, or that I feel very passionate about
writing stories that entertain me
– feeling smarter as I attempt to become “better” as a writer (whatever that means)
– surprising people
– getting people to seriously ponder my ideas
– learning
– flashes of inspiration
– the speed and depth which inspiration creates
– the emotional high that comes with the inspiration
– the freedom that comes with expressing my individuality
– creating discussion
– EVERYTHING about creating fiction (unless it involves anything in my “hate” list)
– learning before I start to write when I desire to write, because it helps make my writing more profound, better, etc.

Overall, I’d say that I hate it, but it is who I am, and I can’t do anything else about it. To remove it from me would remove a large part of who I am, so I’m stuck with it, for better or for worse.

A Labor of Love.

The Rantings of a Crazed, Lunatic Writer.

“Sailing Winds”

I am on a ship
In the sea
Being me,
Being free

The waters are calm, and blue
For me and you

For you see,
You, and me,
And we,
We are all on the ocean
We are ALL sailing…

Someone has fallen overboard,
We flip his ship,
And set him upon his way…

Some have sunken their boats;
Some stay, some go away

But you, and I
We have our ships
Our hopes and dreams, sky high…

There’s some thunder off in the distance
Frightening to me,
Nothing to you

Luckily, there have been no typhoons…
…For me
God only knows
What YOU have seen

But we sail
Going away
From day to day
Our own way

Soon, the storm will come,
And hopefully, it will be ok…

But as we left the dock
Around ambition-o’clock
The sqwaks
Sqwaked
And squeaked
And yipped
And yeeped
And advised
And despised
And envied
And pitied

To me, they sucked
But to you, they blew

And away we went…

I could still hear those winds
Miles down the sea
And my head began to wonder
What would become of me

So I went back to the voices,
The only ones I had heard,
Who performed little action,
But spoke many words

The doubt, it grew,
Until I looked over at you,
And then, I knew,
That through and through,
You knew
How to navigate that ocean blue

Me, I was panicking
Much more frantic
As I had a big, ambiguous destination,
Unable to measure my boat

But I sailed my way
And you sailed yours
While we look for that everlasting
Golden shore
Of peace, and contentment,
While on the dock,
They roar more, and more…
_________________________________________________________________

My poetry.

Insightful.

Career.

Goal.

Excerpts from my fiction.

My Youtube channel.

Inspiration

Are you a creative type? If so, under what mental circumstances do you create? Do you wait for inspiration? Or do you go out and seek it? Does the inspiration come quickly? Or are there long gaps in between? Do you have to work hard to get the idea? And if so, under what circumstances do you begin to work on it afterwards? Once you have what you believe to be a good idea, what makes you work on it? Inspiration? The prospect of the final product? How often do you work on it, and at what interval?

As I sit in my room, at 4:30 in the morning, awaiting another afternoon shift in retail, I can’t help but ponder my current position. I think of all of the work that I must do, and how uninspired I feel to do it. Although I should be sleeping, I can’t help but want to do something. But at the same time, I don’t really want to do it.

I don’t want to feel like I’m not working on anything. I always want to feel like I’m doing something productive: something that will make me money down the road. But I’m not willing to compromise and do something that doesn’t make me happy in order to make that money (besides, apparently, retail). The idea of “selling out” or doing something that doesn’t make me happy in order to make money does not appeal to me. I’m only willing to “sell out” at the bare minimum: sure, I’ll stock shelves for some money. But, personally, I’m not willing to do much more than that.

Friends and family think I’m crazy. And maybe I am. But if the political philosophies that I have been studying for the past few years actually mean anything to me, then I need to make my own decisions in my life and live it.

I always dread hearing what someone else has to say in response to something that I have said. Most of the time, I just really don’t want to hear it. My life may spiral downward because of forces that I’m currently unaware of. Perhaps, others will gloat, or at least say “I told you so” while lending out a helping hand. But I’m just not happy. I’m just not happy with the common words that I hear, so, I believe that the only solution to this problem is to create the words that make me happy. Hmm…that’s good. Please don’t steal it. I’m in that terrifying stage of young adulthood (honestly, you’re always a byproduct of your decisions) where my life could go in many directions, with the majority of them seeming to be shit. Well, it probably will be shit. That is my expectation: that my life is going to be dreadful. I don’t want to hear a goddamn word about rainbows and sunshine. It’s my life, it’s my perspective, and I want it to be dark, if only for the laughs that can come out of it.

Perhaps, I truly only am writing this because I’m tired of hearing the words of others. Honestly, I don’t want to hear anyone’s thoughts on this. But this doesn’t do me any good if it stays on my computer, never published on the internet. It only does me good if it causes someone to say “Hey, that was good. I need to read more of what he writes! And then, give him money!” Once this is completed, that’s the only way this will do me any good. While I’m writing, it’s all good. It’s all therapeutic. But once it’s written, it only has value to me if it is marketed or sold. Because I don’t need to reread what I have written to know what I already think.

I respect advice. I’ve respected it for a lot of my life. I didn’t always take advice, and often, I either found it poor or later on found it to be helpful. But I don’t want it anymore. I’m not happy with what anyone is saying to me. And, personally, I find this to be a problem. Right about now is when someone would say “You can’t always hear what you want to hear.” And I understand your point, but you’re missing mine. You can control a good deal of it if you want to by doing what I wish to do at this point: just tune it all out.

For some reason, I’m just a terrible independent decision-maker. I’m hoping that this is only due to my youth, as the majority of my life has been spent in it, and I’ve made some terrible decisions up to this point. I know that I will always make poor decisions, but I’m hoping that they just become more sporadically spaced as time goes along. I hope that I’m not a “social degenerate”, someone who has “thrown his life away”, who “should’ve learned something worthwhile when he had the chance”, who, instead, lived a grandiose life of dreams regarding-what was that comedy bullshit he wanted to do again? Oh yeah, who cares. Never heard of him. And yeah, he ain’t a King or Rowling, that’s for sure.

The point of this is that I don’t want to seek external validation for my decisions anymore. I spent more time trying to get my father to believe in me like I believed in myself than I can recall. And I understand that he knew a lot that I didn’t. But I don’t think my dreams are completely unfounded. I don’t think my self-confidence is delusional. I don’t think my desires are childish. But I need to figure out what the fuck I’m doing. I have a small sense of it, but I think something is running deeper in me than I’m currently comfortable admitting to myself.

Perhaps I’ll be working in retail on into my 40s, knowing no other career than cereal stocking. That’s a good possibility, from my current perspective. Perhaps if I had only taken the advice of x, I could be making five times more money in my thirties than I’ll make by not taking their advice. Perhaps I’m the only fucking person in this world who doesn’t understand my life direction. Maybe everyone else is right but me. But I can’t listen to them.

I may be delusional, but I’m not stupid. I may be overconfident, but it’s not completely unjustified. I’m a terrified individual. I’m terrified of a tire blowing out as I cruise along the interstate. I’m terrified of my teeth falling out due to drinking too much soda. I’m terrified of my window of opportunity closing as I age, wondering if I’ll regret ignoring the sagacity of my elders. I’m terrified of what type of person I will be in the future. I’m terrified of becoming the type of person I hate. I’m terrified of spiders. I’m terrified of not knowing how to function as an adult. And it wouldn’t be the fault of my parents, because Lord knows they tried to teach me. I just ignored them, for the most part. I listened to them (at least somewhat) when it came to being a good person, but not when it came to, for lack of a better term, “life skills”. Practical skills involving physical labor. My laziness today is the same laziness from when I was a kid. It’s just there. Perhaps it will chain me to a life of minimum wage jobs, but I think I’m good enough at something to escape that life. But what is it? I think writing is part of it, and I think comedy is part of it. It better be, because that’s all that I have.

I love my family to death. I love my father, my mother, my friends. But I don’t want to take anyone’s advice. I’ve done that enough. Sometimes it worked, and sometimes it didn’t, but I don’t want to do that anymore. (I repeat myself so much from piece to piece. Oh well). I want to stay up past 7:30! I want to…no, I’m kidding. But I don’t want to take anyone’s advice right now. I don’t know when I will want to again. But I don’t right now. I appreciate it, but I don’t want to take it. I suppose this piece is a real bellyacher, but maybe it’s just self-therapy. If it is, then I don’t understand why in the fuck I’m publishing it.

I try not to write unless I have some stuff pretty well formed in my head already. At least when it comes to non-fiction. Fiction is a much more spontaneous process. And when I’m not doing something productive, I’m dreaming of future spoils. Isn’t that the life of the creative? You either create, and dream of spoils, or you create and have spoils. Very rarely is there any middle ground in that regard. I spend more time dreaming of fortune than working on what I wish would obtain said fortune. So I guess I have a pretty good ratio going.

The “problem” is that I believe I can do it. Deep down, I believe I can do it. I blame my parents for that one. I was always told that “I could do whatever I set my mind to.” And dammit, I believed them. For better or worse, I fucking believed them. And I have my mind set on becoming wealthy through writing and comedy. And that’s what I’m going to do. Nothing else will satisfy me: my mind is made up.

I’d love to tell you that I spend countless hours, days, and even weeks working on something. And I guess, in some sense, I do. It isn’t always writing. Sometimes it’s a comedy video for Youtube. But I would like to believe that I spend a large majority of my time observing. Observing people who do or have done what I wish to do, and trying to take something from them. Something valuable. Something that I can apply for myself. Seeing what I have in common with those that are doing or did what I dream of doing. I listen to their life stories, looking for similarities to my own. Looking for anything that makes me feel like I’m on the right track; that I’m on my way to doing what they do. And I would like to think that I’ve already learned a lot along the way while doing this, with a lot more to learn coming up in the future.

But one thing that stops me is my own financial failures. Time and energy are very valuable, precious things. And unless you love to do something for it’s own sake (or even for someone else that you love), you aren’t going to spend a lot of time and energy (or even money) doing something. A large part of my dream is dreaming of wealth. And the longer it doesn’t show up, the more my dream changes (or the more depressed I become). Right about now is where you’ll tell me not to care about money, and right about now is where I’ll tell you that I’m ignoring you. Also, right about now is where you’ll tell me why my work isn’t any good, and tell me that’s why I’m not making any money. I’ll refer to you to a previous sentence as to what my response will be.

But something that runs deeper than all of this is a personal conviction that I have that states “Do what you want to do.” This message, in all honesty, may have nefarious roots, but it has become an ingrained part of me for so long that I don’t think I can truly think any other way. I made up my mind at a young age that I was going to try to get paid for something that I wanted to do. I decided this, honestly, in part due to television news broadcasts which scolded CEOs for the amount of money they made. I decided that I wasn’t going to care about money (plus, I believed these same newscasts which stated, in effect, that making money was “ripping people off” (something I now know to be a lie)). Also, an even bigger part of this conviction came through the constant coverage of celebrities. I wanted to become a celebrity…

I wanted to become rich through becoming famous. This is still true today. I saw a bunch of people making a bunch of money by doing things that I thought I could do, and I wanted to do it. It took me several years to figure out exactly what I was going to do, and how I was going to do it, but that’s where I stand today. “I can do that.” That’s been my mentality. Everything that I wish to do for a career began with “I bet I’d like to do that” and “I can do that.”

Of course, I’ve learned along the way that it is harder than I expected. But another part of the reason that I decided to “do what I want to do” is because I had a feeling that only doing something for money when you don’t enjoy what you are doing will suck the soul out of you. Of course, this is what most people with a job do. But I’m only willing to do this to a bare minimum. There are people out there who get paid for doing what they love, and I know I can do that, too.

I don’t need anyone else to believe in me. This, I guess, all started that way, but I don’t need it anymore in order for it to continue (although it does feel good when someone does). I have enough confidence now to believe I can make careers out of everything that I want to make careers out of. The seed has been planted, for better or worse, and I can’t foresee it coming out of the ground anytime soon. Perhaps I’m objectively overconfident. But I’m going to make a choice to determine that I’m just-the-right-amount confident.

So I believe that I have the talent, and I have the desire. So one would think that I work nonstop. And in a sense, I do. But there’s so much work that remains unfinished that I felt the need to explain it for myself in this piece here. Why do I have so much unfinished work? Well, for one, many things “take a back seat” to other things. “That’s a good idea. Write that one down, so you don’t forget it. But I’m actually in the mood to work on this. Now I’m bored with this, I want to work on this. Now this is completed, but here’s a new idea. I don’t want to work on that one now, either, so I’m going to work on this new idea.” It kind of comes down to waiting to be in the right mindset to get something done. Perhaps it’s an extreme application of “Don’t do what you don’t want to do.” I’ve never liked the idea of forcing myself to write when I didn’t feel inspired. When I didn’t already have something to say that I wanted to say. I felt like the writing wouldn’t be as good, it wouldn’t be as fun, and I didn’t want to do it, because that would defeat a large purpose of why I wanted to do it in the first place: because I wanted to do it. And I still feel this way today.

So the way I work is that I work on smaller things while making a note of bigger things to do, and putting off many things while working on a wide variety of things. I have projects that are now years old that have nothing done on them more than “Hey, remember to do this. This is about this.” I think a part of that is waiting until I know what I’m going to do before I start to do it. I don’t want to start writing when I don’t know where something is going to go. Then, once I do, I let the creative process take me away until I at least get some semblance of that, even if unexpected things occur along the way. I sit around, waiting to feel “inspired” (something that financially successful writers probably hate, telling hopeful writers to “keep writing even if you don’t feel it, and finally something will stick”, or something like that. Something about putting in your dues…)

But instead of telling myself to write x amount everyday, and instead of telling myself to work on one specific project before starting on another, I let myself wander. I work on many projects at once, and few of them get done in a timely manner. And I’m kind of ok with that. A part of me wants to get more work done, but I don’t think my work would be as good if I treated it differently. I enjoy being overtaken by inspiration, and then not being able to control my desire and my execution of writing, and perhaps this is dickish of me, but something seems dishonest (at least to me) about forcing words to come. If you have to force words to come, you aren’t a writer. Well, at least, probably not a good one. Perhaps that’s unjustified, but it’s my feeling nonetheless. Writing is very spontaneous for me, with only an idea of what a piece is going to be about. The rest comes through inspiration (and, usually, immense boredom with everything else around me). But the question that I want to ask myself is this:

Why doesn’t inspiration come to me more often? I have enough ideas to keep me busy constantly. But I never feel inspired to do them. Once again, right about here is when an “established writer” will tell me that I need to put in the “elbow grease”, that everything isn’t going to be “squeaky clean”, and other cliches that I want to ignore. I don’t understand inspiration. I feel like I’d love to be able to write as much and as well as “greats”. And I’m sure that a lot of those writers are up to their necks in “elbow grease”. But I wish that I could do that spontaneously. I almost don’t want to work for it. Maybe that means that it never comes. But this is the process that I’m going to abide by until further notice. It kind of does suck, because of the amount of unfinished work. But I want my visions to overtake me; I don’t want to pick them out, because it doesn’t feel good to me. I believe that my best work comes when I’m inspired, and can’t control myself, and it just comes out. I don’t envy writers who sit staring at a blank screen, waiting for an idea to come. Fuck that shit. I’m only pulling out the screen when I can’t keep the words from flowing. And I hope that never changes.

But what causes the inspiration? Boredom. A lot of pondering. Desperation.

I can’t think of any other way to create good ideas…

I prefer organic ones as opposed to manufactured ones.

So I’m not going to be as productive as some.

But maybe I can compete with quality over quantity…

Well, at least I believe I can, anyway…

Now, we’ll let the market decide my fate…

…I’m no longer as optimistic.

A Declaration of Independence.

The Rantings of a Crazed, Lunatic Writer.

How I Can Become A Better Writer.

The nature of writing is that you have to do it: the exhausting nature of the work which I wish to accomplish.

Boston – Foreplay/Long Time.

“A Swarm of Coins”

Vex not Thou the Poet's Mind

i.am.a.fraid.i.shall.not.be.fa.mous.my.fri.end.
i.get.no.pay.che.ck.in.the.mail.
oh.hell.what.is.wro.ng?

You worry too much about Washingtons, son!
You should only use your pen for fun!

that.is.un.real.lis.tic.
mon.ey.ru.les.with.a.pa.per.fist.
do.you.sm.ell.the.swe.ll.sme.ll.of.Ber.nan.ke?

What I smell is debt, a dangling death,
and greed that feeds on the needs
of all these fellow Americans.

I implore you, wielder of words,
don’t shrink from the heaven of contentment.
Don’t write for the paper.
Write for a seemingly smaller prize:
Happiness.

o.kay.then.i.wi.ll.try:

Once.upon.a time. there was a poet.
who.though.he didn’t.know it.
was. skilled. in the.art of “showing it.”
now.i.don’t. mean a pant’s package.
but.rather how to hit. words with a tennis racket
and not be held. in a bracket,
a straight jacket,
of coins.

For when he writes
he writes with a bold passion,
to let others know
of what’s real
and how it feels
when all you see
is a swarm of coins.

View original post