Thoughts About Where I Am As a Creative

Ten years ago this month, I wrote, what would eventually become, the tenth chapter of A Moment’s Worth. While I didn’t make the conscious decision to write a book until a few months later, to me, I see it as the starting point of everything that has come since then for me, creatively.

It’s with these decade-long anniversaries arising that I’m starting to reflect back on all the creative writing projects I’ve done since making that conscious decision all those years ago now (and may dive more in-depth into in a future post), and also about where I stand as a creative. Specifically, I’ve recently started asking myself the question of whether or not “aspiring” and “emerging” are words that I can use to describe myself as.

This thought has come to mind by way of two avenues. One of them has been through fellowships and programs I’ve applied for in the past that are designed specifically for those who are emerging in their creative field. When deciding whether or not to apply for them this year, the question came to mind when reading over the criteria: Do I still count as an emerging artist?

The other avenue is by way of a social media post someone I know wrote earlier this week, saying that they lately refer to themself as “a very accomplished failed [creative];” arguing that they’ve done a lot to no longer be aspiring, yet have not reached success in their field. It’s an odd middle ground to be in. What do you call yourself if you’ve done a lot, yet you’re still not at the level to where you can do your creative work as your full-time, professional job?

That’s kind of where I’m at in my journey as well. I’ve written so much, and have had so much work published and produced over the years. And yet, as I’ve relayed mainly in private, I’m not where I want to be. I strive to do more and go further than I have before. While that is a good thing, what do I call myself at this point?

With the exception of my pursuits as a screenwriter, words like “aspiring” and “emerging” no longer feel appropriate to describe myself as, yet to say I’m “successful” feels really far fetched. “Failed” most definitely doesn’t seem right, because that really happens when you’ve stopped trying.

I take comfort in the fact that a majority of “overnight successes” as far as creatives go are usually folks who’ve been working for years, but people are only just becoming aware of them and their work. As I keep going, I’d like to think that perhaps that is just a matter of time for me.

For now though, maybe the simple answer is that I am just a writer; one that has written and does write a lot, even if not everyone either of my target audience or the general public is aware. But what I’ve done so far, it’s out there, and I strive to not make it hard to find. And just know that more often than not, there’s usually something in the works.

If you are able to, I hope you can go support me in all that I do by leaving a tip over on Ko-fi. I do a lot of writing that I get paid very little for or not at all, and so this is a way of showing your support other than just reading my content. Donations of varying quantities and frequencies are greatly appreciated.

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