Monday, November 30, 2015

Method to Madness: Please yourself and the rest will follow

As writers, we’re often asked what are you working on to appeal to the market?

I’ll admit it, that type of question irks me a little bit because I’ve always enjoyed going my own route, beating my own drum and not having a care in the world for what I’m “supposed to do”. I love writing and I love writing a lot of things. So I focus on that.

By solely focusing on pleasing others, I wouldn’t do all the things I do. That’s as simple as I can state it. As is, I’ve published a novel, just finished the first draft for my second one, released three poetry collections with more on the way, a short story collection and I’m working on a variety of projects that drive me.

That’s the thing though, they drive me. I’m inspired by them. I enjoy them. They please me. Sure, I love taking requests but in the end, I write to please myself. The things I do in social media first have to make me laugh or make me think before I share them and if there’s something I don’t enjoy, you can bet I won’t post it.

In music, I've posted videos of original songs and a cover by Oasis. If someone has a request I’ll consider it but in the end, the version I put out will respond to what makes me happy because if not, it'll show.

In writing, the less you think of the outside world and the more you let yourself be guided by what drives you, by what you care about, by what you’re passionate about, the better you’ll write. It’s the difference of something feeling real and resonating or when something appeals to a crowd for the sake of a golf clap.

People ask me, what should I write, and that’s the first mistake. Never ask ANYONE for what you should do with your work. Let your inner compass guide you. Be honest and write with every fiber of you because when you do that, you’ll realize that in a world of 7 billion + people, SOMEONE will like what you like as well and you will resonate.

Some people like to write for X or Y market… and it shows.

To hell with that.

Write what is within you. 

What drives you? What are your passionate about that you consistently talk too much about? That thing. That topic. Write about THAT! Because inspiration may be triggered by external stimuli, but it shall always come from within… the same place where your best work will come from.

Peace, love, and maki rolls.

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