For the Criminally Inane

For the Criminally Inane

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Great Suffering Makes Great Fiction

I have to say the last few days have been some of the hardest in my life.  I won't go into the dreadful details of my boring life, because we all suffer and because trials are meant to be shared, not compared.  As I was prostrate, crying huge sobs this week, feeling regret, pain, stupidity, guilt, I came to a realization.  I realized that suffering made me a better writer.  Not only have I earned greater depths of understanding, compassion and skepticism, I learned another great truth: Everybody loves to read about somebody else doing something stupid.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Sucess=passion, persistence, talent and...

When I was in college, I majored in theater.  I know, shocking isn't it?  Now that you've recovered, I have to tell you about something I learned while at a theater competition in California. I went to a workshop titled something like, "Do you have what it takes?" to see if I could make it big in theater.    The lady who taught the class lectured then gave us an oral questionnaire of things we needed to make it big.  She should know, she had a bit part in the Young and the Restless.  I dunno.  To me that didn't sound like wild success. But who was I to argue with someone actually making a living in my chosen field?  I found her lecture interesting and worth my time as I came away with several precious nuggets of wisdom. First, I decided I didn't want to do professional theater.  I didn't have the passion or persistence and my talent was only so-so.  Second, you need passion, persistence and talent to be successful in any profession.  Third, there is one other element needed to be successful.  After she presented, she asked questions in order of importance for us to evaluate ourselves. The first she asked, "Are you lucky?"  Not, Are you talented or good looking (phew!)  The second?  "Are you lucky?"  Perhaps it was the repetition or the fact that this particular question was first two on the list of ten, but it got me thinking.  Am I lucky?  Do I really need luck to succeed?  Now that I'm older and have heard more success stories of my peers, I really do think that there is a ton of work, sacrifice and preparation that comes before your big break.  But so many stars (no Hollywood pun intended) have to be aligned, so many things orchestrated beyond our control, that could only attributed to luck.