The Right to Write
Everybody has something to say, and everybody has a right to be heard. The traditional model of submitting your writing to agents and editors is slowly crumbling, and that’s a good thing. You don’t need permission to be heard. You don’t need somebody else’s stamp of approval to say what you need to stay. Just say it. There’s too much bullshit related to the craft of writing. Sure, it matters how you weave a paragraph together, but it’s also possible to put writing technique on a pedestal, and ignore the more important question of what’s actually being said. Good writing happens organically when you’ve got something important to say. So, just say it. Don’t wait until you have permission, because you may never get it from someone else – give it to yourself right now.
There’s a massive imbalance of supply and demand with film, writing, music and art. We have so many artists creating valuable works but they’re not being heard, because only a handful of people control the distribution of these art forms. And those who control the distribution are heavily invested in this idea that not everybody should be allowed to do it. You want to be a filmmaker? Good luck – not everybody has the talent for that. There’s a special genius involved in holding the camera and telling people what their character wants; it takes a lifetime. You want to write? Forget about it; writers are a special breed of tortured artists, living in poverty and casting their magical literary spells from their lofty garrets. You want to act? Sorry, you don’t look like a model, and even if you did, getting cast is like winning the lottery. Never mind that we’re making the same movie again and again, with the same actors, again and again. There’s just so much bullshit, it’s hard to know where to begin.
Writing is gradually becoming democratized by blogging and self-publishing, and I believe that film will eventually move in the same direction, with more amateur filmmakers creating better products than Hollywood. Films reflect the state of consciousness of the filmmaker, and unfortunately, so many contemporary films reflect a state of awareness that is obsessed with fear, ego, violence, and pain. We desperately need new voices to be heard, but they probably won’t be heard through the traditional channels. So, make your voice heard: start a blog, self-publish a book, direct your own film. Don’t wait for permission. Just give it to yourself. Your voice should be heard.
Carl McCoy, copyright 2017