it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken
matociquala

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he wants nothing less than to wear a little dress

The best thing about Jukido is that as a white belt I am allowed--expected!--to be a complete INCOMPETENT. It is so relaxing to be allowed to suck. I am expected to know nothing, to do everything wrong, to fail constantly. When I actually get something right, and earn a crumb of praise, I feel like I've done something huge.

I imagine if I keep up at this, in a year, I will actually have a set of criteria and standards in place, and I will be beating myself up every time I don't get my feet at the right angle--but for now, I am content to suck.

It's so refreshing.

Guitar fills this niche for me, too. I am, let's be honest, one fucking incompetent guitarist. (I sing okay, if you can tolerate a dog-whistle soprano. Hey, it's not the voice I signed up for, but it's the one I got.)

But the thing--well, yanno. My day job. This writing gig. The thing about it is that no matter how hard you work, you can never do it well enough. Something is always flawed, not good enough for somebody. No matter how much effort and concentration and heart's-blood I pour into any story, there will always be readers for whom it does not work, or worse, is offensive.

I can't do anything about that.

And if you think that inadequacy doesn't register for every writer ever published... well, I'm pretty sure the ones who have never looked at the response to their work and thought, "Maybe I should just swallow a bullet?" are deep in denial.

I think it's like this for every creative artist. People invest so much of themselves in the art. I mean, my god. I could make a better living as a secretary. And yet here I am, trying to tell stories that reveal pretty much every terror and aspiration and torment I've ever experienced so some guy who spent two hours reading them can shred them on the internet because he's allergic to gay people, so somebody can bitch about how I'm smug, self-righteous, and intentionally obscure because I accidentally pushed her buttons and made her feel intelectually inferior when I was in all actuality working my ass off to be as transparent as I knew how--

Yeah. I'm a lousy writer.

So is everybody else. Writing is too hard to do well.

And yet it is too important to do poorly. And people take it very personally when you don't do what they wanted, even when you are working your ass off to do what you hoped--

See, there's a thing. To write at all well, you have to be willing to show your throat. And if you're like me, and you have learned far too well that any vulnerability you show will be used against you, that vulnerability becomes a kind of horror show.

But that's art. Nothing you do will ever be good enough.

Tags: adult survivor, falling off perfectly good rocks, guitar god in training, hitting makes me feel better, three chords and grimace musically
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