Look, I don’t mean for this to sound like a complaint, a “I did a cool thing and no one noticed, boo hoo” entitled little sulk. I’m just baffled. I haven’t had *crickets* in ages, maybe never. So let’s stir the pot. Will someone go back and read this?
Interestingly the post had a lot of meaning for me. The next day, I tossed together a stream of consciousness poem and posted it right away, and boom, views. And you would not believe how common that is across the creator-sphere: the thing you pour your soul into gets barely a glance, and the piece of fluff you made for a laugh goes viral. Which is really justification for making as much art as you can. Who knows what will get noticed?
The Post FKA: “The Ides of March? Never Met Him. What’s He Like?’
Three years ago, I self-published my first short story.
Two years ago, I had fourteen titles on sale, was writing a few novels, and felt like I was figuring things out.
Last year, I went over the edge.
Up till then it had felt like I was doing everything right. I don’t think I knew how depressed I was, which is something my mother said in reference to the same time in her life.
Taking medication was me making a sensible choice for a goddamn change. A grown up, self-disciplined decision to rein in my worrisome habits of thought and behaviour and become (what the hell was I thinking?) a productive member of society.
The results were predictably bad. You may recall that I am manifestly incapable of doing anything directly. Plans adjust themselves, reality reorganizes, and my intentions never end up aiming at my goals. I must approach all challenges and opportunities sideways: improvise, adjust, create new ways in the midst of living them. This is a very durable feature of my personality, and it affects everything I do, including taking medication to regulate my brain function. I’m sorry, but my brain function is a bratty queer with a glitter gun and the first six rows of the audience *will* *get* *wet.* Trying to rein this in leads to wildly unregulated emergent behaviour, and it was bad.
While high on legal speed, I did not buckle down and focus on my writing, which I was suddenly unable to do. Nor did I get really organized and plan my next year, down to the hour. No, in between the bouts of tremors and sobbing into the carpet, I decided to start another blog, devoted not to writing but to (honestly, what the hell was I thinking?) historical menswear.
I swear it made sense at the time. A distraction from the stress of a publishing career and encouragement to do more sewing, and if I was lucky, a back door into being known for anything at all, which somehow optimism and fairy dust would turn into a book career. It became one more task looming over me, one more chore to neglect. I needed to write books, not faff on about cravats on a blog no one would read without me promoting it like crazy.
I took the medication for a week. I quit when they wanted me to up the dosage. Once I recovered from my inadvertent meth bender, I wrote a novella in which a doctor gets punched. I’ve done plenty of drugs under my own recognizance, and if I’d paid a schemy 22-year old in a nightclub bathroom for a pill that did to me, I’d hunt the little shit down and get my money back.
The blog lasted six months.
edit: This blog? This blog I do nothing to promote, that doesn’t sell my books, that does nothing for anyone? It’s coming up on two years. 152 posts. See? It’s just like I said. Sideways or not at all.