Sunday, April 28, 2013

Not Every Moment Is A Teachable Moment

A lot of the time when something crappy happens to creative types (writers, painters, underwater basket weavers...) people will try to turn it into a positive by saying, "At least you can use this in your art."

While it's well meant and I always just smile and shrug or something, the truth is, sometimes a crappy thing is just a crappy thing. Not everything is useful for art. In fact, a lot of the time it just drains you. I'm sure there are people out there who need to suffer for their art, but I'm not one of them. 

So that's all this blog is. No moral, no big realization about life. Life's like that - sometimes you don't get a conclusion. Or a purpose. Sometimes things just are what they are.


  1. Yeah, I don't know if I buy that either. I've had my fair share of crappy experiences (like the rest of the world), and so far, they haven't turned up in anything I've written. I guess I can get how writing it out could be cathartic, but why would I want to relive it over and over again?

  2. Agreed.
    I tried to write about a crappy moment once. It didn't turn out so well.

  3. I hate it when people think that just because something bad happened to you, you should write about it. Doh, why don't you write about some crappy part of your life and let me know how you like it? Oh, you don't write? So SHADDAP about it!

    Seriously, I couldn't agree more.

  4. I think people say that just to put a positive spin on a negative situation. The problem with putting a spin on something is that you're by definition manufacturing silver lining as opposed to pointing out inherent good. There isn't always inherent good. The only thing that keeps me going through bad situations (other than "don't sweat the small stuff" when it really isn't a bad situation) is that everything happens for a reason. We can't prove that, but that's what faith is.


  5. My roommate in college was a theater major, so an oft-used phrase in our room was "Use It." As in, use it in you art. It doesn't really work that way though, does it? At least, not directly. I can channel frustration, anger, resentment while I write, but I'm not into dissecting crappy experiences in my fiction. Plus, my life and my characters' lives are drastically different, so it wouldn't serve the story.

    1. Yeah, I think in the end most people work better from an equilibrium sort of state rather from a "sound and fury" sort of state.