Embrace the ‘No’

This post is lightly inspired by an image posted by a friend. It was alluding to three important ‘rules’ to live by. I noticed the lack of embracing a no response, so I added it for her.

It is probably leading to a load of confusion for everyone who sees it, so I am going to further explain what I mean in this post to express what I meant!

A no is progress. Of course, I mean this mostly in regards to the arts, mostly because that is where a majority of my experience is.

While I was pitching my book to publishing agents, I loved getting rejection letters. It let me know that they actually took the time to consider my work, and that they just felt like it was not worth their time. It is easy to forget when you are entrenched in a work you have created to remember that agents (both literary and music) make their money being able to sell your work to a bigger label. So, yes: you may have done something amazing for you. You might even have friends and family who think what you have done is amazing; but if the agent cannot sell it, they are going to pass. This doesn’t mean that the work is bad, it just means that the audience doesn’t exist, or the timing is off.

Hell, we all have seen pieces of art that we think are horrible. There are number one singles in the spotlight that we know we could do better than, or books that are boring. There are actors that are just fucking terrible, podcasts that are petty, and blogs (like this one) that are a mess narratively. The only reason they exist is because someone heard the ‘no’ and said ‘MEH’.

When it comes to the arts, it truly is a timing and arrogance game. Luck plays an unfortunately large percent of how things go. I say arrogance because you cannot give up, even if you are feeling like things are too hard. If you have an end goal of making money doing the arts, and your enjoyment is being hampered by your inability to do, the choice has to be made: is the ‘no’ too taxing on your continued enjoyment of the journey?

CELEBRATE

Hey! My friend, Joel, requests his friends and acquaintances make him a birthday something. I try to do this every year, usually just a short audio clip. This year, I decided to make a PodCast to him! Yeah, it is kind of not my usual thing, and it’s very short, but it does contain some (what I consider) excellent recommendations for things to look into!

Self-Impose

I have given myself until May 10th to have the rough copy of my next book completed. From that day, I have given myself another 6 months (November 10th) to have the second draft completed.

Some may be confused. If I am my own boss, for the moment; why impose restrictions on yourself? Why not just ‘go-with-the-flow’ and let things be done when they are done?

It’s a fair question with a simple answer: if left to my own devices, I would never complete a creative project.

I hear the questions already.
What about the All Cut Up albums?!
I played drums and mixed them. Yes, one could argue that I co-wrote them, but I was always convinced that it was Kevo’s project first. I wanted to release the best thing I could produce for him as fast as he would be happy about it.

What about the other projects you produced?
To reiterate, they were other people’s projects. As much as I would spend hours on mixing and leveling what I could, I just had to make it sound the best that it could. In a couple of cases, that mix was found very quickly. To continue to mix would risk ruining the end result.

What about the first book?
I am going to be doing a PodCast talking about that very soon actually, but I was aided in the fact that it was based in an event. I only had so much creative control when discussing reality.

So, yes: I will have a completed version of the book by November. You have until then to support me on Patreon to ensure that you get listed at the end. Just $1 a month is all I ask!

I Crave Your Privledge

I was faced with the only phrase that rivals my hatred for the term “better” and I feel I have to rant about it in a way that I can actually say all my thoughts without being interrupted.

I have a special kind of hate when people say the words “…if I had your life I would…” because it makes NO sense. I realise that I had more avenues open to me than some, and I realise that it could be seen as I skwandard most, if not all, potential in my life. To claim that if you ‘had my life I would have…’ is incredibly short-sighted and brazen.

If you really did live the life I lived, exactly like how you are implying, then you would end up just as me. There is a reason, in every life, that everything turns out the way it does. Yes: in some situations (most situations) it is a direct result to the options you have available to you at the start. Yes, there are stories of people overcoming adversity and achieving great things, but there is a reason you know those stories: they are the outliers. They are so special that the gravity of what they imply needs to be shared with the world.

To assume I let things get away from me because I am lazy, or I messed things up, ignores any hardship that I may have faced. The statement that I did something wrong assumes that you know the working of my brain when faced with adversity.

To be clear; I am not saying that is always an excuse. I am not saying that is a full excuse for why I, for example, have been to college 3 times, university once, and don’t have a diploma or any other sort of credential to my name. That is not an excuse why I have performed on 10 recordings, yet my name is far from a household name. I have the kind of brain that holds out hope that I can do something in the arts, and the arts are one of the few industries where luck really does play a role in the way everything turns out. For instance; I have recorded at least 5 songs that I was CONVINCED should have been top ten material.

I am losing my original point. Assuming that you could have done more with someone’s life and privilege than they have IGNORES everything they may have gone through.

Hello, New Year

Hi, 2021.

I have little faith in you. 2020 was promised to be a fantastic year, and look how that turned out! I know that it is unfair to blame a man-constructed unit of time for all the failings that we experienced, but 2020 was kind of amazing. To do a rundown of all the not-goodness would take way too long, so I will just leave the note as “last year sucked” and move on from there.

Really, what we saw was mankind falling suddenly and harshly. Minus the earth quakes, everything can be easily traced back to something we did as a species. Even if it wasn’t species related directly, we saw large portions of our population for who they really are. It turns out that a large portion of us are racist, and even more are blind of fascism and hate.

There were some amazing things that came from the year, and they are easy to forget. We saw unprecedented speeds in developing a vaccine for the worst pandemic that we have seen since the Spanish Flu, though I am not saying their impact was one-for-one. We have done some amazing research into the things in our immediate biom, and continue to make massive leaps in space travel.

We have lost some amazing talent in the acting sphere. Some due to pandemic-related stuff, some not. We have seen a host of ironic deaths where the people were convinced (publicly, anyway) that they were invulnerable to the plague, then succumbed to its apathetic hands.

It is hard to do a retrospective on the year without spending a majority of time on COVID: it truly had defined the year. If it was a person, it would be very proud with the impact that it has garnered. It ALMOST over shadows the immensely important and (unfortunately, still) necessary message of black lives matter (BLM) that shook society to its core this year. We (whites) didn’t know that it needed to happen, but a large majority of us are so happy that it. brought so much to the forefront.

So, what should we expect from 2021? Are we going to be barraged by the same stuff, or will the next year actually be better?

I am taking a lesson from this year: next year will just be another in a long line of years. Do I think society will collapse, that we will finally see racial and sexual freedom on a grand scale, or environmental reform? I wish I could say we will. I do think some things will get better. I think we will start to see the impacts of the change that needed to happen. I think that the arts are fucked for the next few years, and I think the environment has passed the point-of-no-return.

Overall, I feel pretty uneasy. I would love to be proven wrong.

Please, let me be wrong.

Independent Book Sales

I have not talked much about my book in a while.

I assume that, if you are interested, you have already picked up a copy. After a conversation with a friend of mine on Twitter, I realized that I should really stop thinking that way.

So, I re-edited and re released my book back in March. I expanded it with several short stories, and moved it from 73 pages to 195 pages.

On the physical copies, I have made the cover art black with white writing, but the opposite is still true for the digital.

I have been pushing towards buying from Friessen Press for two reason: They pressed the book, so they are going to have the proper copy. AND I try to damndest to support private and independently run storefronts, whether digital or physical.

NOW, FOR SOMETHING MORE DOWER.

I know I expel the great parts about being independent often, but the bad parts are starting to become to big to handle.

Since the initial release of You’re Not Dead back in 2016, I have made a total of 832.89 in total sales. For one month, that would be decent, but we’re talking a period of over 4 years. Considering by outgoing was 4878.93, I have not even made a full quarter of my outgoing back. To top everything off, that payout doesn’t include things like web hosting, facebook ads, or physical copies to be reviewed on the international stage. The real number is closer to 6000.

Anyway, the point of this post is to ask that you at least consider looking over my book. There is a review posted on the linked page, and you all have a feeling for my writing style by now.