The arts matter. I’m just going to put that out there right away. Anyone who argues otherwise clearly does not understand the value of the arts and how they shape and define a culture. It’s been highly preached that we need them now more than ever, in the aftermath of the election of a buffoon of a man for president (that is, unless the electoral college has the brains to change that in the coming week). That’s why it was a huge loss for the arts community when the lives of 36 artists were taken away in a local fire two weeks ago.
The arts matter, but I feel that for some people, there’s a limit as to just how much of the arts they are open-minded enough to embrace. There’s a mental capacity as to just how much they are willing to consume, depending on what form the art takes. To put it even more bluntly, based upon my experiences, the emphasis on the importance of arts are strongly preached, so long as the art is easy enough to consume.
And that’s where I call BS on such hypocrisy. Coming from the angle of someone who creates art that requires more than a few minutes or two hours to consume, I know first hand at what that’s like to hear from supporters of art, and yet find difficulty with reading a novel. It’s so frustrating to experience. Yes, go to this film festival and support this person’s independently-made film. Please go download this person’s album in support of their endeavors in music. Check out this webseries this team got to do for YouTube Red and then go tweet about it, using the hashtag so-and-so.
Trust me, I’ve heard it all; both from the sidelines and in the midst. But when it comes to supporting someone’s writing, God forbid, don’t wear your precious eyes out or stretch your brain too far due to the far greater time needed to consume the content. Based on what I have witnessed, the closest the average art consumer gets with supporting writers is through poetry and spoken word, which, conveniently enough, can be pretty easy to consume, as far as amount of time spent goes, when compared to a novel. Don’t get me wrong, for I am all for poetry. But sometimes, something a little longer is needed.
I’ve spoken through this blog and aloud how difficult it is to be an author writing for a generation that doesn’t really read for fun. However, as time goes on, it seems that this resistance to not supporting authors and their creations as stretched out even to the older generations. I don’t know if it’s due to the movie industry’s trend to adapt books for the big screen or the Internet’s tendency to raise us, even if we’re already full grown. All I know is that something has changed as far as the societal outlook on novels goes, and I don’t like it.
Generally speaking, there’s no reason for this resistance, for as writers, we’re doing the exact same thing as any artists would do; we’re telling stories and invoking messages out into the universe. We’re doing exactly what you would expect from watching a TV show or a movie, except that for a novel, it’s more fulfilling for the author, for everything – the world, the characters, the plot – is created by that person alone. While yes, it may require more time to get through than the average movie, just know that through reading a book, details and expositions follow through that can never be effectively executed through the medium of media.
Earlier this week, I was interviewed by a newspaper regarding An Absolute Mind, and the individual who was interviewing me has even told me that he’s going to read the book – and he meant it too. Just hearing and believing that, as well as actually taking interest in what I do and what the story is, you have no idea how wonderful that is to hear from someone other than my parents. This is the kind of mindset I wish consumers of art could be willing to embrace and act on more often.
Embrace the arts in ALL its forms; film, music, theatre, drawing, dance, painting, graphic design, AND writing. The more open-minded a consumer of art can be to works that require more than a minute to consume, the more thoughtful of a culture we can create together in the long run.
An Absolute Mind is now available for purchase on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, CreateSpace, iBooks, Kobo, Smashwords, etc. If you read it, please leave a review, for they’re greatly appreciated and help me grow as a writer. Also, be sure to check out its Goodreads page, and feel free to leave any questions you have about the book.