So there I was, complaining. Then a friend of mine, author of “Adventures in My Petticoat“, very kindly commented:
“That’s amateur talk.”
Why, yes, I do believe it is. And a light bulb came on.
Being an amateur artist while pretending to be professional is one of the most depressing states of being I can imagine. It’s when you tell people you’re an artist, and you study art, and you call the part of your room with your computer your “studio.” But it’s also when you just draw when you “feel like it”, and when you daydream about being “discovered”, and you fantasize about the day when you’ll be asked to speak at conventions. Professionals do this too. But the difference is that professionals also strive towards these dreams and fantasies. Professionals make a serious effort towards changing “somedays” into reality.
I was a pretend professional for many years (and I still slip into that mode sometimes.) Depressing is the only way to describe it. You’re constantly thinking about what might be, while trying hard to ignore what is. In the end, I was confused, frustrated, tired, and totally out of steam. It takes a lot of strength to pull yourself out of a rut like that, because it means establishing new habits and new ways of thinking about life. Wow. Talk about challenging.
But I just want to say that it’s worth it. Really, truly. The feeling of confidence that comes with working for something… the feeling of relief that comes when a task is completed…
The feeling of pursuing your dreams is waaaayyyyy cooler than the feeling of wishing for dreams to come true.
It’s time to stop hoping and start making.
I may or may not say that to myself every single day, almost every hour. It helps me remember what it’s like to be aimless.
Also: Go home, winter, you’re drunk.