I reposted this here with Kincaid‘s permission. I thought it as something more of us writerly folks needed to hear. Make sure to click behind the cut to read his note to writers.
Date: Oct 17, 2007 7:21 PM
I’ll be taking an absence from MySpace and soon from the Internet as I relocate to a more suitable environment in which to work efficiently and–it is to be hoped–reestablish clearer vision of what writing fiction and literature is truly about. I honestly do not know how long I will be absent.
A note to writers:
Now, more than ever, I sense growing desperation if not outright hopelessness from the mutterings of so many writers. Then again, we’re seated in Hell. What can one expect?
Regardless: If you are one who feels this way, I ask that you seriously contemplate which goals have real meaning.
Publication–in any venue, large or small–only validates the presence of that venue’s standard of skill, their personal tastes, and *perhaps* the particular shade of talent that one subjective editorial filter is receptive to in the business environment of that venue in that moment. Bullshit aside: it doesn’t validate much.
The lack of publication or the desired level of publication does not *invalidate * the presence of skill or talent. The state of being unpublished, in fact, says nothing at all. It yields no evidence supporting anything. In some cases, it could probably be argued that it is a testament to the many structural flaws of the industry … or the particular challenges that ‘horror’ faces.
It does not matter what others may think of you, unless you make it matter, and I deem ridiculous the stress so many writers–including myself in the past–put on themselves to change what they believe to be the social/professional perception of themselves through the eyes of others. It does not help when you have authors landing deals and babbling on their blogs about making “distinctions” and a “weeding out process”. For a little while, I talked the same nonsense. This is the type of thing, though, that can make you feel inferior, less, defensive in the least, and quite likely contribute to the next depression–to which all writers appear to be prone, no surprise.
Realize, ladies and gentlemen, that none of that … shit … matters.
Look beyond the moment, the present.
In the eyes of time, each of us are the outcome.
All that we will ever do and ever accomplish, all that we have written and *ever will* write, all that will be remembered many years after we are gone, that’s who we are.
Right now. That’s who we are.
That is who we have always been.
In the end, it’s the words that matter. They are bigger than us. They are bigger than all of us.
They live forever.
Use them well and so will you.
Write, be proud, and not too humble.
Souls of fire light the skies of time.