Blue Collar People: MAKE ART, SHOW ME!

Read an article I really liked on Salon about writers and how it’d be helpful if they admitted that they come from money, so when aspiring writers are asking, “How did you get so successful?” and the truth is the writer comes from a trust fund and hasn’t ever had to work for a living or raise kids, and the writer says, “HARD WORK!” which is true, but also the writer might be more helpful if they said, “I’m supported by a trust fund and I don’t have any kids to raise and HARD WORK!”

The article is by Anne Baur, it’s called,

“Sponsored” by my husband: Why it’s a problem that writers never talk about where their money comes from”

read it here

and after you read it, this is what I have to say about it …

I like what this woman has to say. She calls out privileged people and admits she is privileged too. And she didn’t have it easy, she had a difficult road, like we all do. I admire that kind of self honesty. She’s saying in this essay that it’s easier to be creative when you’re allowed the time and space and funding (love too) to do it.

Really, rich or poor, I hope everybody who wants to make art, can find ten minutes everyday to do it. That’s the real issue, you’re only alive for so long and no matter what your economics, there are always things fighting to eat up your time.

I love my broke friends though, the ones raising two kids, the ones working two jobs, that are writing, that are STILL making art, despite all the trouble it creates for them. For their families too. I admire them most. The ones on the bus going back home, writing in a notebook, the ones typing on their cellphones on the long train ride back to the sleeping kids. the ones driving their cars down the road and trying desperately to remember an idea they have at mile marker 107, an idea that they’re terrified they’ll lose before the rest stop, when they can jot it down for later. They’re the ones I aspire to be like. The ones that work for a living and still come back to their typewriter/keyboard/notebook or their paints or guitars or whatever. I love these ones that didn’t get golden tickets. The mutts of the common world. Coolest of all the pups, these mutts.

The lucky ones, the ones that came from old money and got to go to fancy schools without a problem, I don’t mind them. I don’t get pissed at people who have something I don’t have. I don’t think that solves anything. It certainly doesn’t help a person be a better artist. Maybe what I think though, is that someone who has never had to work a manual labor job and go without a few meals, maybe that kind of person is missing a few beats about what I desire to read/see/hear in art. But that’s not to say that a person who comes from money should be ignored either, talent is talent. You can’t choose where you come from. I don’t hold it against anyone.

My dad has worked his whole life, a mechanic and a volunteer fire fighter, my mom has worked her whole life too, a while in a factory, a while in retail, always on her feet. They always found time for the arts. And I’m not talking like the arts have to be this fancy inaccessible thing, I mean, fill your home with music and film and crafts for your kids, and take them to the library as much as you can. If you don’t come from old money or scam money or any kind of money, if you’re blue collar and working for a living, GOOD, that’s good, MAKE SOMETHING.

show it to me. I want to see.


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