My fellow writer Serdar is busy working on Unmortal, his next novel, but has just announced the work to follow. He’ll be writing “Charisma,” a story that started as a practice book cover with a Geisha and a dog. Our crowd latched onto the intriguing cover, and in time he evolved an actual story – of a woman and her pet in a world where coolness is power.
Serdar went through several iterations to make the story his – as he notes, “This, whatever it is I have here, I’m the only one who can write it as far as I know.” Those are good words for any creative to live by – create the thing that only you can create.
Living by those words is the problem, as we face many challenges to do otherwise.
We want to make money and figure there’s no way “what I truly can do” will make money. We want to share but fear that what’s truly in our heart as an artist won’t reach others. We have many other fears – ridicule, misunderstanding, and more.
It can get to the point that we don’t even know what we want to create or make. It’s hard to know oneself at the best of times. It’s harder when you’re carrying the burden of fears and expectations.
I’ve come to think of the “what is the thing only I can make” is best answered by getting out there and doing it. I’m not saying you can snap your fingers and make your fears and questions vanish; I’m saying you might as well move forward anyway.
Write, draw, create, plot. Rewrite, redraw, replot.
You’re going to doubt yourself and your ideas. You’re going to question yourself and who you are. This doesn’t alienate you – it makes you like almost all of your fellow creatives.
But if you keep moving down the road, there’s a chance you’re going to meet yourself and figure out what’s the thing only you can do.
Your own super-cool Geisha with a dog is out there.