It’s been a long while since I last made a post. About 6 to 7 months if memory serves me right. In those last couple of months, a lot of things have happened. I’ve dealt with the loss of my step-father, changed jobs, adjusted to a 16 hour commute, and my writing has sort of suffered as a result of that; and so has this blog.
I refuse to let that continue to happen. It’s not right that I should let go of the things that make me happy because I’m trying to live a more mature life. Mature living hasn’t gotten me very far, I will like to point out.
My blog title for today is Make Good Art. Why do I say so? It’s because they’re the words Neil Gaiman said at a commencement speech last year. His words were, we should make good art, no matter what happens, no matter the situation we’re in, no matter what people say about our work, we should always seek to make good art. And not just good art, but we should make our art, in our voice.
I remember his words today because I just got my first review and rating for Reprisal. It was a one star and the reviewer had quite a number of faults to pick out in the book. The words got to me, made me depressed. And the joy I’d felt at having a novel out today; the joy I’d felt at the inspiration I had for a new book vanished into thin air as I saw frozen in my chair, my heart beating fast, depression seeking to weigh me down further. Bad reviews can do that. Especially when it’s the first your book gets.
How will I deal with it? I shall do three things told me by three different people I look up to for different reasons. They all have one thing in common though. They’re writers.
The first is Neil Gaiman’s words. I will make good art. I shall seek to write better stories. But they will be stories that are distinctively mine, with my voice. I really can’t start changing my writing style. I tried that and failed quite horribly at it.
The second is from my good friend: Remi Olutimayin. I will Let it go and write another book. A brilliant piece of advice especially considering that I just got another idea for a new book: something funny and light, which I can enjoy writing and I do pray it gets accepted for publication.
The third is from M/M legend: Aleksandr Voinov. It wasn’t an advice per say, but it was something that he said he does whenever things get to him.Breathe!!! I need to take a long long breath, and keep moving forward. The breath is to take in the criticism, let it out, pull myself forward and let my body and mind know that it’s time to continue moving onwards.
This words are easier said than done though. I will be the first to admit. But I believe strongly in baby steps and it is about time I start living that.
My first step would be to continue from where I left off on this blog. For those that read my posts occasionally, I’m sorry I’ve been off. I’m back now though. Time to get to work.
Hopefully, by tomorrow evening, I shall have some snippets to share of my new story. Let me know if you like it.