Truth is, I don’t know what I want anymore.
Or maybe I just can’t remember…
I have these drives… these compulsions… to act. I can’t read books anymore, because my brain is too “on” right now. I have three library books out, they were due today, I’ll take them in tomorrow and pay the 30cents… perhaps renew one of them… but every time I sit down to read one, I get into it, perhaps as little as half a paragraph, never more than a couple of pages, and something I’ve read has started connections and trains of thought within my mind and I find myself more entertained by my own mind and the pursuit of my new ideas than in what is on the page.
I have been inspired to create more illustrated childrens’ books in the past two weeks, trying to read these library books, than I have been in the last two years. I have had more new ideas for short stories, novels, and longer works and collections in the same period than in a long, long time, and most of them have come as I’ve been trying to read. I can’t get through the books – I can’t seem to concentrate on the authors’ ideas – I’m too inspired. Did I mention the other night I fought my way through less than half a page of The Hours before I had to get up and write down my own (not directly-related) ideas? Before I was done 100 minutes had passed and I’d filled an 18″x24″ sheet of paper with notes describing the relationships and timelines and story breakdowns of an anthology I expect my mind will force me to write before too long. Tonight, reading Dude, Where’s My Country, I’ve been inspired to create a series of illustrated childrens’ books and a new blog, where I write about things going on in the news and the world and in politics from a rational point of view that I sometimes have. Not “liberal” or “conservative” or about who said what or any of the garbage I keep running into – not just in the media (which includes Fox News and Michael Moore, both) – but among the people I know as well, but instead based on trying to look at what makes sense. Bah. I’ve blathered too much about that already. I’ll either do it or I won’t, and if I do it, it will speak for itself.
Where did I start? Oh yes. What I want.
Not sure it matters.
Reading stuff like this, facing the garbage that’s been going on in the government and the world in recent years, doesn’t just make me want to get the heck out of America (like many of my friends have said they plan to do if Bush is re-elected), it makes me want to fucking blow my head off. There is no place on Earth, no place I have ever heard of, or heard people dream of going to, that is free from this sort of garbage without also being free of basics like nutritious food and clean water and not-worrying-about-malaria. The only way I can think of escaping it would be to pass from this Earth, and seriously – even if I didn’t believe I was inescapably headed for Heaven, the atheist view that death would be just that appeals to me more than the reality of continued life on Earth, among humans as they seem to be choosing to be. Only each person can change themselves, so unless I can earn the trust and respect of 7 billion people and convince them all to make right decisions, what can I do?
It’s very frustrating.
And I don’t know what I really want.
I don’t really think God’s about to let me blow my own head off, though he’s been hinting pretty heavily that I need to get my ass down to the valley and pay a professional to teach me how to shoot and otherwise handle guns. Handguns and rifles, both. As soon as possible.
And I know some things I don’t want.
I don’t want to become an advertiser. Marketing … has never been my strong suit. I don’t feel I have the knack for it. There are elements to it that I just don’t seem to grasp. Perhaps someday this will change. Perhaps I will find the time and money to take a series of Marketing courses at a college, and perhaps after I do that successfully I shall begin to understand. But right now I not only don’t get it, I don’t like it, and I don’t seem to be good at it. I don’t want to be a “self-promoter”. I’ve been “self-promoting” Modern Evil and my art for years with little to no success outside of a small circle of my long-time friends and lovers. And now I’m writing novels, and that’s great. I like writing, I can stand editing, but … now I have to market them if I want to get any money out of them.
I’ve already invested hundreds, perhaps thousands of hours into each book. I’ve also invested a certain amount of actual money in them. Is my time worth something, or have I been masturbating all this time? I think it is worth something, and more than that I believe that people would enjoy reading my books once they got their hands on them. And I seriously don’t know how to get the books from where they are now – available for purchase – to where I’d like to see them – purchased, and in the hands of readers – without just buying them myself and giving them away. THAT I could do, know how to do. I know there’s some other way of doing it – something that involves people actually paying money for the books – I literally and seriously don’t have a clue about how to get that to occur.
And no, I don’t really want your advice about how to do it. I don’t want to be a self-promoter. So unless your advice amounts to who to get to do it (preferably for little or no money down – I believe a slice of each dollar earned as a result of their actions is due them, but I don’t have any money right now) or an offer to do it yourself, you’re not helping. Yes, I know I’m being stubborn.
But asking me to do my own marketing feels to me like you’re asking me to breathe used motor oil.
For reference: trying to figure out how to get my books to sell (ie: trying to do it on my own) has been more stressful and painful and has caused more anxiety for me in the last few days alone than working with my father has caused in the last … 60 days or so, combined.
It isn’t good for me.
And neither is staying up until 4:30 in the morning, or wondering how to get the server to stop using daylight savings time.
So I think I’ll go to bed.
No, I still don’t think I know what I want, and I don’t think I addressed much of what i meant to address (ie: long, painful discussions about the path of my life and my lack of companionship and work and the idea of ‘career’ and economics and the idea of the urges and drives I have now as compared to any sort of ‘plan’ or ‘path’), but perhaps I’ll post again. Later.