Ever since I was child I wanted to be a writer. It was an odd choice for me because I never enjoyed reading and received average marks in all of my English classes up until high school. I recall in middle school having an idea for a novel that was a play off The Neverending Story I probably had just watched. It would be set as a murder mystery in a western saloon which replayed as the young protagonist of the story read the scene trying to get clues. Let’s just say it didn’t get far but the passion for writing blossomed in that moment. Over the years I have seen ideas of mine being splashed on my television and movie screens too much fanfare. I get sad thinking of how I didn’t push harder on my dreams and someone else has taken the spot that could have been mind with hard work and determination. But in that I also wonder if I am so creative and special, how is it they had my same idea?
It is said most novels, well most things written are just a play off William Shakespeare. I couldn’t even count how many Macbeth or Romeo and Juliet plots are rehashed in film and print yearly. With that in mind, I began to wonder if anyone is really bringing anything fresh to the table, and I actually don’t think so. Truly, it’s all retelling of the same, with extra drama points that sometimes make sense but usually overwhelm the underlying plot just to stand out and appear nuance. As I read and watch other’s creative works, all I see are more adulterers, more murders, more sexual assaults, more unrequited love stories, more love conquers all stories, and more fairy-tales. I mean everyone is trying to be Stephen King, J.R.R. Tolkien, or James Patterson; others are trying to have the next Marvel hit or Star Wars on the screen. On the small screen please, fresh ideas are almost nowhere to be found, while the few that deliver on the strange or unexpected are seen as too much. Is it that the ideas aren’t new, or too new and uncomfortable?
I can say it’s probably both. Studios and publishers like what has a proven track record to make money. I understand it’s a business so cost/benefit analysis and the bottom line are important; but as a writer and someone who just wants to show my own vision, I am disappointed at all the similarities everywhere. It is getting a bit old but mostly it makes me worried if all the creativity has left the planet. I know how hard it is to think up a new story or a new blog post, but I love when inspiration hits and I feel I’ve challenged myself. The flip side is when I then either see something similar that came out before I had my idea, or I do nothing with mine and soon after, and even years later I see my idea on ABC or at Barnes and Noble. Are we all just swimming in the same pool?
I notice I am posing a lot of questions without answers so let me correct that. I do believe there are new ideas out there. I also believe the studios and publishers are only take risks when they feel they aren’t risks ( kind of defeats the purpose ). And yes I believe we all are swimming in the same creative ponds. I have yet to meet another creative soul that doesn’t have a story to tell of missed opportunities and ideas they had before they became known and popular by someone else. I guess I can somewhat liken the creative pool to the wisdom of the universe. I’ve shared in other posts my feels that all wisdom is old wisdom just repacked for the person you are sharing it with and the times (click here) (click here). Things the great philosophers shared centuries ago still can be applied today with some tweaking or none at all. Nothing really is new under the sun.
The idea kind of depresses me. I like to think I have a great mind to sit and write a book, flesh out the scene, characters, and story in a way that makes sense and is enjoyable. I like to think I am putting in great work on being in tune with the universe just the same, but… . In the end, I see my gift in being able to write in a manner that people can enjoy at all. It is such a gift to be able to write, create worlds, and have the patience it takes to put in that kind of work. It takes guts to be creative and allow judgement, whether its paintings, acting, writing, or cooking. As someone in the arts, we show our vulnerabilities, and that in and of itself should be commended.
As of this post, I’m not published yet but I have written several books, with more on the way, and I will be published soon. I get to write my blog in the meantime which brings me so much joy even with limited readers. I also have the Dharma, meditation, and tools to assist in hearing the wisdom of the universe, and understand its message. I know I must stop looking at others works and success, trying to shed a light on my own when my light is already bright and shining. As a seeker, I tend to ask questions that seem revealing, but I am noticing might be putting up road blocks to living the life I feel I am destined to have. The source of my creativity shouldn’t concern me. I have a gift and access to this wonderful creativity pool, and I have no intention of wasting it.
I have ideas. I have determination. I have wisdom. I am a WRITER.