Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Other People's Words

"I have a friend who’s an Italian filmmaker of great artistic sensibility. After years of struggling to get his films made, he sent an anguished letter to his hero, the brilliant (and perhaps half-insane) German filmmaker Werner Herzog. My friend complained about how difficult it is these days to be an independent filmmaker, how hard it is to find government arts grants, how the audiences have all been ruined by Hollywood and how the world has lost its taste … etc. Herzog wrote back a personal letter to my friend that essentially ran along these lines: “Quit your complaining. It’s not the world’s fault that you wanted to be an artist. It’s not the world’s job to enjoy the films you make, and it’s certainly not the world’s obligation to pay for your dreams. Nobody wants to hear it. Steal a camera if you have to, but stop whining and get back to work.” I repeat those words back to myself whenever I start to feel resentful, entitled, competitive or unappreciated with regard to my writing: “It’s not the world’s fault that you want to be an artist…now get back to work.” Always, at the end of the day, the important thing is only and always that: Get back to work. This is a path for the courageous and the faithful. You must find another reason to work, other than the desire for success or recognition. It must come from another place." - Elizabeth Gilbert


onefootonshore said...

Exactly what I needed to read today... as I was catching up on blogs rather than getting down to those poems...
Thanks, as always, for the timely inspiration!
Now: I'm Getting To Work!

Julita said...

Brilliant post! Thank you! As an aspiring artist I needed this reminder. It's a good kick in the pants!

Spiritartartist said...

"Vitality shows in not only the ability to persist but the ability to start over." ~ F. Scott Fitzgerald

Look at a stone cutter hammering away at his rock, perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it.  Yet at the hundred-and-first blow it will split in two, and I know it was not the last blow that did it, but all that had gone before."  ~ Jacob A. Riis

P.S. Mo looks like my cat, Tommy. They could be twins. I hope yours doesn't turn out to be a biter like Tom though.

In The Heyday said...

I have had a long time away from reading blogs and today I was happily going through all your gorgeous pics of Mo.
I was recently in Austin and am gutted that I forgot you were there!
Anyway, just wanted to say thanks for this quote - I needed that. Am about to print it and stick it on the fridge.