I'm not exactly sure what prompted me to pick this book up, but I'm sure glad that I did. I really wasn't expecting that much from it.....I'm not sureI'm not exactly sure what prompted me to pick this book up, but I'm sure glad that I did. I really wasn't expecting that much from it.....I'm not sure that I expected anything from it, but in the end it had a whole bunch of good stuff to give.
“Recognizing that people's reactions don't belong to you is the only sane way to create. If people enjoy what you've created, terrific. If people ignore what you've created, too bad. If people misunderstand what you've created, don't sweat it. And what if people absolutely hate what you've created? What if people attack you with savage vitriol, and insult your intelligence, and malign your motives, and drag your good name through the mud? Just smile sweetly and suggest - as politely as you possibly can - that they go make their own fucking art. Then stubbornly continue making yours.”
May I have a hallelujah?!?! That passage is what pushed this book from a four star to a five for me because it's spot on. It took me a long while to get that people's reaction to my art did not belong to me and figuring that part out was immensely important to my sanity, such that it is. I draw the public's faces for a living. People can be quite sensitive about their face, so when they find (or would find) what I did for them particularly objectionable they would take it quite personally. Many times my intelligence, talent and general personhood would be insulted....to my face, not through a computer. I cannot say I handled it well every time I was attacked. I cannot say that I handled well most of the time, but I got much better at it once I figured out they were a bunch of mean spirited morons and would say in my head (so as not to be fired or punched) 'Go make your own fucking art!' and....'have a great day!!' Then I would stubbornly continue to draw the faces....so there.
Another thing that I thought was particularly helpful to budding artists out there was a part where Elizabeth was talking about fancy art degrees. If you're parents are not part of the one percent, do not go into crushing debt getting a fancy art degree from a fancy pants school. Because having a degree in the arts, whether we are talking visual or in writing, does not get you a solid good paying job right out of school. Going into debt for a law degree or a medical one...or anything like that will get you a job right out of school that will help you pay off the crazy debt. Many professors in these art schools got where they are because the sat down and drew, painted, wrote A LOT... on their own to master it. There are many ways to educate yourself in this stuff....auditing classes for one. No one ever turned away a great work of art just because the artist did not have a degree. Never has that happened.
“What’s your favorite flavor of shit sandwich?” What Manson means is that every single pursuit—no matter how wonderful and exciting and glamorous it may initially seem—comes with its own brand of shit sandwich, its own lousy side effects. As Manson writes with profound wisdom: “Everything sucks, some of the time.” You just have to decide what sort of suckage you’re willing to deal with. So the question is not so much “What are you passionate about?” The question is “What are you passionate enough about that you can endure the most disagreeable aspects of the work?” Manson explains it this way: “If you want to be a professional artist, but you aren’t willing to see your work rejected hundreds, if not thousands, of times, then you’re done before you start. If you want to be a hotshot court lawyer, but can’t stand the eighty-hour workweeks, then I’ve got bad news for you.” Because if you love and want something enough—whatever it is—then you don’t really mind eating the shit sandwich that comes with it.”
Isn't that the truth? Whatever you do...especially for your paying job, there is going to be suckage and the key is to find what kind work has the suckage that sucks the least. But it will sometimes suck.
“None of it was ever easy, but that wasn't the point. I had never asked writing to be easy; I had only asked writing to be interesting. And it was always interesting to me.”
I did not coin that term, I did hear it from somewhere, but I don’t remember who said it. Sorry person who said it. Anyway....I am a satisfied single.
I did not coin that term, I did hear it from somewhere, but I don’t remember who said it. Sorry person who said it. Anyway.....what this means to me is that I’m fine with being on my own. It’s easy. Would I like to meet ‘the love of my life’ or ‘the man of my dreams’ my 'soul mate' if you will? Sure, I’d be alright with that, in fact it would be great. But I'm not holding my breath.
Am I willing to spend hours and hours poring over profiles, reading messages from guys that put little to no effort into writing them? Nope. I have better things to do. But if I stumble upon my prince charming by chance? Cool.
“The world is available to us, but that may be the problem.” Truth. It’s exhausting.
In Modern Romance, Aziz explorers and compares how people once found one another to how we painstakingly do today and he does a damn fine job of it. And he’s really funny too.
“People who own iPhones are twice as likely to sext as people who use Androids.” Huh…who knew?
“The most popular time to sext is Tuesday between 10:00 A.M. and noon. Yes, we looked this up twice. Strange!” Again……huh.
“We have two selves: a real-world self and a phone self, and the nonsense our phone selves do can make our real-world selves look like idiots. Our real-world selves and our phone selves go hand in hand. Act like a dummy with your phone self and send some thoughtless message full of spelling errors, and the real-world self will pay the price. The person on the other end sees no difference between your two selves. They never think, Oh, I’m sure he’s much more intelligent and thoughtful in person. This is just his “lazy phone persona.”
I have the best example of this from some guy who was trying to ‘git wit me’. Seriously. Trying to impress me and this is what he put forth…..never mind that he never, not once, asked me a question about myself. There was a bunch of attempts before this but this is where I was trying to get him to have a conversation….ask something…anything.
“Guy: Just dont wanna be a pest. Juzy tell me to go away. Hsha
Me: You’re a nice enough guy [name redacted], I’m just confused on why you’re interested in me. I have no idea if we have anything in common….what do you think we might have in common? What are your interests….your views?
Guy: Juzt looking for someone to someone to hang with. Nothing huge. Conversaytion share interest. Love the fsct ur artsy. U seem passionste bout what u do. And easy to look at. Im harmless. I dint bite
I said something, then he sent this gem.
Guy: I work afternoons during thr week. Love to do an art walk in lakrwood or something. Then walk the state park thete. Just a thoygjt”
WHAT THE HELL? Needless to say I did not go out with this guy who ‘dint’ bite and have a ‘conversaytion’ with him…..I wasn’t sure I’d understand him. Look, I suck at spelling, but I know for a fact that devices today help a person out with that problem. In fact you would have to try pretty hard to screw up that bad. AND I hate, hate, hate, the ‘ur’ and ‘u’…..people, you’re phone will helpfully put the word ‘you’ up on the top there for you if typing three letters is too much work for you!
Huff…..huff….huff…. why even try at all sir if that is the best you can do? I’m 99.9% sure this guy will never read this review. At least I hope so.
I’ll end this with one last quote:
“Marriage was an economic institution in which you were given a partnership for life in terms of children and social status and succession and companionship. But now we want our partner to still give us all these things, but in addition I want you to be my best friend and my trusted confidant and my passionate lover to boot, and we live twice as long. So we come to one person, and we basically are asking them to give us what once an entire village used to provide: Give me belonging, give me identity, give me continuity, but give me transcendence and mystery and awe all in one. Give me comfort, give me edge. Give me novelty, give me familiarity. Give me predictability, give me surprise. And we think it’s a given, and toys and lingerie are going to save us with that. Ideally, though, we’re lucky, and we find our soul mate and enjoy that life-changing mother lode of happiness. But a soul mate is a very hard thing to find.”
That’s a lot to ask. I was pleasantly surprised by how good this book was. Enjoy.