Whatever your “thing” is, it’s probably also somebody else’s thing.
If you’re feeling a little down, like there’s no reason to continue doing anything at this point, I would
like to offer up some options for how to proceed:
Abandon your craft. You suck at it anyway. Or maybe you don’t suck, but somebody else could be
doing it just as well or better, and that “someone else” will likely be more attractive, make less
mistakes, and have a more engaging personality. They will be a better fit for the “energy” of the
“collective,” and they will breeze through obstacles that once brought you to your knees. Set down
your paintbrush, remove your character heels. They look unnatural on you. Walk barefoot into the
Puget Sound and sit on the bottom with the broken chunks of asphalt that aren’t hurting anyone,
wasting time, or embarrassing themselves. It is a wonderful place to be, completely separate from
the opportunity to suck as hard as you were sucking previously.
Mercilessly continue doing whatever you want. Create funny trash and then frame the funny trash as
if it were hanging in the Louvre. When someone else inevitably creates funnier trash than your
original funny trash, make your funny trash trashier. When someone makes their funny trash even
trashier than yours, unfollow them on Instagram so you won’t lose your mind and concentrate on
something else, like learning how to dissociate. Eliminate preciousness from your creative process
(and amass street cred) by becoming a postmodern saint of mess and mediocrity. Become startlingly
unessential, dangerously mid, and completely and utterly shameless in your irony.
Resign yourself to bitter adjacency. Smoke so much marijuana that you are too gassed up and giggly
to comprehend the enormous burden of trying to love something that’s hard to love. Mourn your
half-loss by embracing numbness. Reflect on your insufficiencies and let them drive you somewhere
you deserve to be. Get a job at the coffee stand next to where you actually want to be working and
see if you can learn to transcend the astral plane and get in on the action next door that way.
Become anything that anyone wants you to be – a go-fer, a gremlin, a gnat. If all else fails, you can
always say psych and denounce your previous “thing,” so that your lack of progress comes across as
voluntary instead of pathetic.
If after considering these options, you are still convinced that your “thing” is going to work out as
originally intended – You may need to seek professional help for one of the following conditions:
● Confusion (general)
● Delusions of truth, love, or beauty
● Devotion (obsessive)
● Denial (general)
● Artistry (terminal)
Keep in mind that all of the above conditions are treatable, remissable, and of no means for
concern.* With these surefire coping strategies, you are sure to evolve past the suffocating grasp of
living with a passion – Good luck abandoning your craft!
*with the exception of Artistry, which is violently transmissible, horribly painful, and inescapably terminal.
Monty Rozema (they/them) is a queer multidisciplinary artist born and raised on Duwamish Territory (Seattle, Washington). They enjoy reading novels and comics, working with youth, and spending time in the public library. Their writing has been published by bestcolleges.com, great weather for MEDIA, F3LL Magazine, Hash Journal, Mag 20/20, and many more. In 2021, their short story “Apple” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize.