Beautiful sunny cool day in Austin. Inspiring “bro-client” Erik Conn, drummer extraordinaire, swung by the house in a pick-up truck rerouted by the marathon. Called across my big green backyard to say hey as I hung laundry (muddy dog beds, rugs, towels, and sheets). Though I was ensconced in slobarific writer sweats, and hadn’t had a shower yet, I took a brief break to chat.
I was glad to see him. You ever have one of those friends that gets right to what’s real? The day, the weather, his blues and joys, tacos, house-sitting, fans, concerts, art, music, the zone, discussions of ego and other psychological structures and their relationship to the soul. Such was our conversation, as always. Not to mention bro hand-clasping through the wire fence (tall because of escape artist dogs) and words in parting that leave me feeling loved and supported. More than a few times he’s called me one of his favorite Jedi Knights.
Inspired by the familiar discussion with Erik, his dedication to creating art that pays off huge in joy and beauty but not so much in moola, and how difficult that can be, here’s where I am right now on the zig-zag creative path:
- Practicing life-long writing habit.
- Know what I want to say and saying it.
- Putting “it” in the work (all angst, problems, arguments go into the writing, not the air).
- Dividing writing time fairly well between the creative and editing sides.
- Spending an equal amount of time learning the business, making contacts, and marketing as I do creating the work.
- Operating as if writing is my main job now.
- Always have a great guide or teacher (right now, it’s Truby).
- Not thrown off course by creative peaks and valleys.
- No writers block, though I do swim through mud often on the business side of things.
- Setting boundaries, ie, I say no to 90 percent of gatherings, arts, shows, holiday visits, travel, even relationships.
- Maneuvering through the minefields of life and day job and just keep writing.
Here’s a shout out to Erik and all the other struggling artists, who’ve dedicated to their art and craft and are still in the in-between world of the day job that pays the bills (which could last forever as far as anyone knows) and are still driven to create. Here’s to you, creators!
As Erik said today, “The sun is on my face. I’m glad to be alive!”
Where are you in your process? Feel free to give a shout out in the comments to the dedicated creator in your life, especially if it’s you! Post links if you feel it.
I got the photos above off Erik’s facebook page, where you, too, can check out Erik’s wonderful way with words. I’ve been known to re-post his status updates.
For now, here are some links to great photos of Erik. Ciao.
- The Day Job… (artfulhelix.wordpress.com)