Is writing still relevant? I'm thinking about going ham on a story that's been in my brain for over 5 years but you know... I've been thinking is writing even relevant i mean obviously people read but like there's sooooo many people trying to make it big but how many of those people actually get there book out there idk I'm so lost in thought what do you think?
I definitely understand where you’re coming from. In today’s society the arts are given great importance in concept, but little to no importance in action – jobs in the arts are hard to obtain, and it often requires a fair amount of luck to stumble into one no matter how talented or skilled you are. People with dreams to pursue the arts professionally – as writers, artists, dancers, musicians – are often given sympathetic looks and asked, “What’s your backup plan?”. It’s hard to keep believing in yourself and your talent/passion when “You’ll never make it!” is coming from all directions. However, I personally don’t think this makes writing – or any of the other arts – irrelevant, for a couple of different reasons.
1. You’re right in that people still read – that means there’s still a big demand for books, and as old authors die or put out new novels less often, the stage opens for new authors to break through. It may seem difficult for writers to break through, and it is, but not quite as difficult as all those warnings that you need to “have a backup plan” want you to think. It takes time and hard work, and yes, you might face rejection, but the key is staying persistent and not taking rejection to heart. A few examples: J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series was rejected time after time (I believe 12 publishers declined it before it was accepted for publication); Chicken Soup For The Soul (not everyone’s cup of tea, but inarguably a public favorite, and now a multimillion dollar industry) was rejected 33 consecutive times; Stephen King himself had his first novel (also the novel that was his springboard to the best-seller’s list), Carrie, rejected 30 times. Persistence is neccessary to make it in any department of the arts, so don’t give up, and continue to sharpen your skills.
2. More importantly, is writing relevant to you? The only thing that matters about creating is that you like what you’re doing – getting published is great, but if you don’t like the stories coming out of your pen, writing professionally will be just as bad as a 9-5 job in an office cubicle. The inverse is true as well: you might be working as a cashier in HEB so that you can stay caught up on the rent, you might have a cruddy car that needs repairs you can’t afford, but if you still write when you can, and if you still enjoy writing, it will be so worth it when you break through.
Art in its purest form always has been and always be for its creator rather than its audience. An artist is a person on a stage in an empty auditorium, talking or singing to himself or just sitting there and painting – people may stumble into the auditorium, like what they see and stay, but even if his audience grows to thousands or even millions of people, the artist still creates for himself, as if the audience wasn’t there. I’m not saying that people who submit their work for publication are in it for the money and aren’t artists – I want to submit my work to a publisher in the future. However, I personally want to do so because writing fulfills me, and I want to spend as much time writing as possible – I know a job takes up a lot of time, so I want to make writing my job. Money isn’t my reason for wanting to write for a living – spending as much time writing as possible is, and speaking to people through my writing.
An example: Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of the Sherlock Holmes series, grew to loathe Holmes, because he felt that Holmes took attention away from his historical works (which he considered to be his “real writing”). After he “killed” Holmes, people begged him to bring Holmes back, and he refused – until people started flashing money. Doyle revived Holmes and continued to write Sherlock stories, but they made him miserable.
The foundation of my long lecture is this: if writing pleases you, and if that story’s been in your head for 5 years and it still won’t leave you alone, write it! Even if it sits in a drawer for years before it sees the sun again, if it benefits you to write it, it’s worth it.
Hope this helps! Please, keep writing.