Write for and with the masses in mind, she said. To write, also, as though no-one or anyone were watching you do it. Do it for yourself, for your own fucked up individuality. You like to write, so you must definitely like, or even love to read. Forge a path. Make the very first thing that you do in the early-am. be to pick up a book, a novel, whichever really. And if you can’t, then try and make it matter. The most! Let the characters soar, the anecdotal episodes amount to something specific. And still you find yourself miserably uninterested? Then try hard at not trying to try hard at all. What. So. Ever. The rules are there to be typically broken, so keep on telling yourself such a thing. Huh!!! My mind, washed over in a mess of certain uncertainty, I don’t really know what to do next with myself with the writing, or even what writer’s books to attempt for myself to read. The writing part has definitely getting itself done, but the reading? The goddamn reading has always, always, always turned out to be an entirely different kettle of fish, to be perfectly forthright and honest with you. Write for yourself. Huh!!! To hell with all of that; what use was it only ever writing for myself when nobody else got the opportunity to critique my work!? To even so much as love it. Better to have some stiff-nosed people with spectacles for faces critiquing the damn stuff in the first place rather than no-one interested at all in your literary make-up, right? Right!? Anyhow, I have read books, probably more than most actually. What you might get to call plenty of books, in fact. But it just never really manages to sit too well with me. Something or another about my style of writing being entirely opposed to what most writer’s write, and writer’s of hugely significant merit at that!! Shit, so I am kind of stuck in a bothersome bind and with no real way of getting myself out and away from it. Shit! Shit! Shitty-shit-shiiiit!!! Read David Foster Wallace; read so on and so forth ’til your mind is left wonderfully awash with all of the fabricated stories from some of the greatest literary minds of our time. But what on earth do you do with yourself when you seem to have somehow dropped yourself inside of a market whereby you have no real interest whatsoever in turning up to the very same party that you wanted to be a huge part of in the first place? In other words, you want to create great fiction, poetry, whichever really, yet you’d far rather put a gun to your tiny interrupted head than to ever cause yourself to read another writer’s work? Am I a little bit toff-nosed all on my own, of my very own problems regards literature? Fairest of questions. Somehow I don’t think so however. Not fully anyway, simply because I am a conscientiously over-critical, no more, no less. Still here, still pointing my nose at that page and imagining all of the money and fame that might just one day get to come along with my inevitable ability to create a truly great piece of mind-boggling – but not too much either – fiction. Yeah, that part right their definitely goes under superficial, not to mention a rather romantic take on things. Don’t edit it, don’t even try and edit the damn stuff ’til it needs doing. Okay. Next, be all writerly and artsy about it and write ’til you’re blue in the face and you’re sweating like a nerdy little shit. Do that.
You never go deep enough though, do you, I tell myself time again, even if many people in my so far decidedly invisible world of writing will say that I might just be one of the deepest-thinking writers that they know of. But then, who the heck do they even know besides hearing and henceforth feeling the need to have to read certain catastrophic books. I need to go all out with this, like I have done most definitely a thousand times before. Three-thousand-six-hundred-and-fifty-six times to be bang on the money. Or lack thereof as things go. See, I am writing a kind of poetry that falls into a jaded category with most people, I can only imagine, of the sort of structure – well, at least then there is a structure to even speak of – that makes them want to mirror-image me in putting a gun to their tiny little heads And it isn’t quite that I cannot write but rather that they keep on telling me it is going constantly over their aforementioned heads. Little heads, I want to frustratingly say but, to be fair, I’m really no smarter than any of them. Thing is, I made the first huge and measurable mistake to believe that I was. Whoops. Only for one thing… maybe that did stand me out from the rest: that I have this insatiable thing in me that will not, will not, will not ever let me stop myself from feeling this need to have to, have to, have to create that book of one day unputdownable fiction. Ha! Friction rather, because chances are that even if said imagined – very much imagined – book did end up shifting thousand of copies at first, then a few million (I do aim big, so you know), I would most probably still be left sitting with a big fat book of big fat black words and with a beautiful cover only for me to absolutely hate, hate, hate it like nothing that I might have ever hated before. And if the editor was foolish enough to make an error in over-looking something in said book, then there is a good, good and fair decent chance that I’d want all of the books burnt in the first place. Persnickety, absolutely it is and rightly so. No lie right there, I fear.
Write from the heart? Fuck the heart!! Where on earth has the heart of writing got me ’til now? Actually… to be a little less harsh with myself for a moment, I have managed to somehow sell quite a number of personalised poems to people and, at that, from all kinds of walks of life: Sad people, happy people, definitely indifferent people, who, truth be told, I had to force myself to walk them through the making and meanings of the poems ’til such a time as they were finally happy enough to pass over the cash. But pass it over they did. You try and imagine for a second being handed a couple of hundred euro for something you wrote from nothing while the other person thanks you sincerely, albeit they are still most probably crossing their fingers and not even wholly behind their back either, hoping that they haven’t wasted a fairly pretty penny. Again, to be a little fairer with myself, they’ve always seemed damn happy and satisfied that I have delivered precisely what they asked for in the first place, if not minus a few bumpy paths along the way to the conclusion. I’m a perfectionist and that is no real compliments or word that any writer worth their salt might want to be wholly associated with. It’s a plain downright pain and a hindrance above all else. And the compliments have come in kind too, people at unknown by the whole reading events in some far off Irish cities coming at me in their droves. Well, okay, droves when you put it in relation with poetry events numbers, to inform me that they really did wish that they could write just like I was able to do. What gives!? If these people say these things and loud enough and often enough and clearly enough, then won’t there surely be to Christ on a backward standing bicycle come a time when I get to be lauded for all that I have done? Am I simply waiting in the wings, while someone finally comes right along and romantically unearths the next great masterclass in literature? A brand new modern-day writer who is able to take a story by the nape of its neck and to turn it into something rhythmic, something full of a constant and spectacular vision as well as injecting a million-and-one separate juices worthy of unforgettable merit? For once I get to finally be not just the goddamn “up-and-coming poet”, but the man who had a seriously well thought out plan all the way from start to… well, whenever that might be. “He was just following his own reckless path, the one far less travelled, surely… wasn’t he?” That’s what the doubters will definitely say. Right? Who even does that though, writes that many goddamn poems over a six year periodic ‘layabout’!? I do, that’s who, and supposedly quite well with it, thanks for asking. At least in so far as certain people can tell, when they do take the time to read a piece of mine, hmm… three, four… maybe-eee even fourteen times, if they are kind and obliged enough. I’m a little or a whole lot all over the place really then, willing myself on as I go with my day-to-day tasks, wishing upon a hypocritical prayer that one day that great book of fiction will simply drop out of my mind and right onto the page and, what’s more, in the most specifically upside-down yet markedly marketable and magnificent fashion. Am I dreaming, you’d have to ask. And my answer would have to come right back at you as a solid Yes. But what is it exactly that I yearn for, because I have written the stuff that I have seemingly wanted for myself to write, if a little too over-filled with rhythm and, according to a recent honest-to-goodness poetry critic from the internet, verbose words? Had to google the meaning for that word actually. And what it does is it let’s me know in all actuality that my stuff isn’t purposely written to appear to others with a literary kind of an eye to be something of, as ‘honest-to-goodness’ put it, “a vocabulary showcase”. Anyhow, I am kind of taking that as a deeply hidden compliment, why the hell not? In fact, all of that person’s words which they messaged to me, which spoke of my high-wired style of writing, seem to have been neatly laid out in that particular way. An undertone carrying heavy compliments, even if they didn’t quite recognise it right then. I mean, he/she definitely put the time into it, and even went so far as to say that I was “good”. Take it! Take that one word and run with it, dear boy! Run with the very thing that you have yearned to be called regards you and your specific style of stylish writing for as long as you’ve had a standardised enough brain to think that way about things. And it is perhaps all that I think of, if I’m laying it all out there. What’s wrong with a showcase in vocabulary anyway, so long as the damn vocabulary is on-point and suffices to say it the way it needs to be said in the first, second, third place even!? The only thing most probably straight-forward about my writing if I had to hazard a guess? That I truly do believe for the larger part that my style of writing can be a template regards a set and therefore beloved style one fine day. I get it, of course I do. I get that that is hella hopeful, and also now get that my weary and still wired brain is taking to American San Franciscan slang as I continue on. So, when someone tells me that they get it, that they get what I am trying to achieve, and that, what’s more, I am brave with it, but that it doesn’t make them want to run home and read more of my stuff any more for it, then I think I am rather justifiably pissed-off. Not with them of course, but with the medium that I have landed myself in. Does a story, a fictional book really get to fall or fly from the sky straight into my laptop? I mean, seriously, what the hell gives and why am I so, so very afraid of a little hard work in order to properly justify my particular ends to a mean!? It makes sense… kind of… fret not. Learn as I go, right? Maybe I’m not ready for a book of outlandish fiction. Well, the outlandish part perhaps, but certainly not the straight-moving structure of it all and what it genuinely seems to me to entail. Then again, why is it that many of the most beloved writers over the past few generations, few centuries even, and I use the word ‘beloved’ with a smidgen of salt here, because fuck knows how many people actually catered to reading these books and how many more actually just said that they did, ended up wrestling themselves into the only corner they knew via creating the sorts of books that still have readers taking out a number of tiny damn technical devices so as to help them slow down their pace of thought in inevitably hoping to learn to understand exactly what the writer meant in the first place? Why, you might well ask; because that is the only way they saw it working itself out on a page for them. The writers, I mean.
“He is loved but he’s not for everyone.” Massive, hugely significant compliment, by the by. “I love her stuff, it’s just so easy to read! And the story about the village was wonderfully colourful all of the way through, peppered in preciously kept characters.” No thanks. Enjoy the money-train though, my chic-lit scribbling lady. That is just how it fell for that particular – lucky sonofagun – writer, if, that is, she is happy with her lot, like most if not all of the words in the world do for themselves. Joyce, there you are! I have nothing against Joyce, simply because I don’t even know what that is, but neither can I knock the fella for putting what he totally understood upon those pages of his. So maybe that is where the true merit lies for any given writer upon any given day, or for me rather, in the absolute ability to actually land any such words of drivel and drive upon that page. The rest will have to take care of itself, right? Right!? I do get it then, get why some people say that it is safest to write only for yourself first and foremost. Sure it ain’t too much fun and can undeniably become a seriously lonesome pursuit, if that is in fact the route you opt upon taking; a route that I am kind of figuring might just hopefully work its way out for me right this moment actually. But, like with everything else really, we’ll see with hellbent time. Won’t we just.
Keep writing what you wish to write until a book comes together just like all of my thousands of poems have to date. Good, bad, or plausibly in-between, they have gotten themselves over the finish-line, and that has to, has to, fucking has to mean something special. I try to think so anyway. All that I can do, give the page your thoughts – all the damn things – ’til there are seriously no more thoughts left in you. And what if this book isn’t able to lend itself fantastically toward one filled to the beautiful brim with dearly constructed characters? Well then, it isn’t in you right now. That’s what. I’m a natural-born rambler, a natural-born people-pleaser, and I see that more and more each new day. Someone who’s been searching for the right structure all along. But how on earth can anyone ever find the right structure full-stop when it comes to a medium so open-ended and with billions of words to cover? Can’t say fairer than that, can you though? Bleed your way back to life with a story, or whatever, that inevitably, goddamn altogether invitingly gets your own juices flowing. Imagine that dear boy for a real turn-up for the books, so to speak. Sorry. Suddenly the style of my writing regards the poems that I still write will surely filter its way back in and start to beneficially, or not, resurface, and that’s okay too. Cool even. You call that finding your voice, right? I call it bare kinds of licked luck to be imperfectly honest. Tie yourself to that laptop but neither do you do it in a way like you have done before – to breathe it in likes its a fucking horror-show happening all along until such time as you get it bang on. You will not manage to get it bang on until, you guessed it, you actually manage to somehow, God knows how, get it directly bang on. You have to believe for yourself that absolutely everything in motion is rather relative. I have to. Fuck knows, sure I’m only ever speaking these words of drivel and drive to myself anyhow.
Do I understand why some writer’s are prone to going crazy – OCD disorder withstanding? Absafuckinglutely I do. How could I not; when you wake up every single morning with this incredible urge to somehow land the words right and sprightly, no stopping it whatsoever, then of course you get why the likes of Maya Angelou had to, had to, had to write inside of the exact same hotel, exact same spot for her typewriter to be sitting, exact same time every single morning and day. Keep it fashionable, I say. And if you are going to lose your mind, then why not lose it for a real and resolute reason.