When There’s No More Inspiration Left In The Tank, The Brad Will Walk The Line.
“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
My name is Brad.
My world is strife and rejection.
Once I was an office-worker, a struggling go-getter searching for a righteous income.
As the economy fell, each of us in our own way was made redundant.
It was hard to know who had the more cake: me…
Or everyone else…
Walk the Line: to maintain a fragile balance between one extreme and another. i.e.: good and evil, sanity and insanity, decency and decadence, etc.
In this instance, it is the fine line between constant awesome copy and a heaving pile of uninspired bunk… and yours truly has stepped right into the latter.
After juggling with numerous possible topics for this weekend’s latest Post – it soon became apparent that… none of these drafts made any sense(!), had relevance… or at least exhibited the brand of Brad-brilliance you have come to know and love!
Besides, with yet another boring and bothersome Monday around the corner for us, everyone – particularly the 9-to-5ers (and this freelancer included) – finds the thought of Monday mornings both tedious and abhorrent. As this infamous day dawns, that’s it: Brad’s heading off to the mall, uttering some lameass excuse that the nachoes have run out (…as if!)
Some kind of instinct, they reckon. Memory of what he used to do. This was an important place in his life…
Admittedly, on this particular Monday, there is ZERO inspiration left in my tank. Nada. Zilch. Rien. Nichts. But that’s much ado about nothing; it’s best to go for a stroll. Going out now with (hopefully) joyful springs in me stride:
“You can tell by the way I use my walk I’m a woman’s man.
No time to talk…”
“Rejection slips, however tactfully phrased, are lacerations of the soul – if not quite inventions of the devil – but there is no way around them” – Isaac Asimov.
Never give up!
That’s what my mind keeps yelling at me most mornings, as the will to rise and search for new markets to infiltrate becomes steadily less appealing. Oh yeah, as if doing that blog on spare auto parts for a measly fistful of satang is worth the bother! Sure, that rent has got to be paid, but… Come! ON!
For me, the most annoying aspect of getting rejected – both fiction and non-fiction projects – is realising that they got my name wrong. This invariably causes mild spasms of madness, especially after having been so careful to get the current Editor’s name correct.
No matter how soul-destroying rejections are when they do pop into your inbox, you can take comfort in the fact that they happen to the best of us.
Did you see that JK Rowling put rejection slips she’d received from publishers on her Twitter feed last week?
To “encourage aspiring authors not to give up after receiving rejections,” these rejections were for: The Cuckoo’s Calling, recently written under the pseudonym: Robert Galbraith; the publishers were unaware that it was Rowling’s work! One of the letters went so far as to advise her to take up a writing course…
Amazing how blunt some rejections can be. Renowned British SF author: JG Ballard was told by one publisher: “The author of this book is beyond psychiatric help.”
Another fellow Brit was informed by the San Francisco Examiner: “You just don’t know how to use the English language.”
His name? Rudyard Kipling…(!)
Even rejections get rejected! The most amusing response came from Winston Churchill:
I am in the smallest room in the house. I have your letter before me.
Soon it will be behind me…”
“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing” – Benjamin Franklin.
We budding SF authors could do with some respect.
And watch your step.
We can destroy whole planets before breakfast, and have fomented rebellion in the Outer Rim territories before you’ve ordered your mid-morning coffee.
At least the resurgence in my fiction-writing has alleviated the listlessness caused by the current lack of editorial responses from potential markets. Again, my meticulously-crafted fiction goes unnoticed while some bloggers upload a trailer that anyone could put up and scores 30 Likes: jeez…
But what about that fiendish archnemesis: Writer’s Block?
Fortunately for me, ideas and promising passages perpetually sway around my seemingly energetic noddle – formulated, ironically, during my daily strolls (although, these days, one wishes most of those ideas weren’t so crap).
Making time and energy to write is imperative. Finding the right location from which to energise that mad swirl of ideas also helps. Regularly changing your base of operations is advisable – keeps the standard of writing fresh. Luckily, we have a spare bedroom already converted into my office. From this spacious base, the counterattack against the advancing army of bills is planned and launched most days.
“Fool!” said my muse to me.
“Look in thy heart, and write.”
“Lonely inside our separate skins, we cannot know each other’s pain, and must bear our own in solitude. For my part, I have found that walking soothes it” – Alan Moore.
Every now and then, more like. That’s the general consensus of advice columns in writing magazines/newsletters when it comes to the mental as well as physical health of your average scribe. Quite frankly, right now, this scribe feels decidedly below average. Smarting after the lacklustre response to a few recent Posts, a Review is in order.
It doesn’t do too good to be stuck constantly at your desk.
Move around. Well, here in the office only -can’t go out. It’s the height of the hot season, and the searing heat right now is lulling me into a stupefying daze.
It’s hard to believe, but- hey, hey, HEY! What’s this?! FINALLY! A new e-mail in my Inbox!
Open it up…!
“Dear Mr. Radley, We regret to inform you that…”
“For God’s sake, how do you stop it?!” – Ash.
COMING SOON: The Light At The End Of The Fridge (and not a moment too soon).