Wednesday, July 1, 2009


You know I think this would be a great read for all of us..We all have days where we doubt our talent and seek approval...but hey we don't really need it...IGNORE EVERYBODY.

Here is an interview with the author Hugh MacLeod - Enjoy...

TIME: Where did the idea for this book come from?
MacLeod: It's advice I wish I had when I was in my early 20s that I learned the hard way after many years. I had just finished college and I had a creative bug, but I had no way to make a living doing it. It's addressed to anyone in that position — what do you do if you're working in a cube in some big office building and you want to write a novel?

You chose a provocative title. Why should people "ignore everybody"?
Because nobody else can tell you whether your idea is worthwhile. People can give you advice, but at the end of the day, it's your decision. The more original an idea, the less helpful the advice is going to be.

There seem to be two paradoxical messages in your book. On the one hand, you've written a can-do guide to success as an artist. Yet you repeatedly warn how competitive and frustrating the creative marketplace can be.
I wanted to say, "This is going to be tough, but that's O.K." I don't know a single successful artist who has an easy time of it, because it's so bloody hard. But at the same time, they have the satisfaction of doing something remarkable. I'm not trying to scare these kids off, it's just all about talent, discipline and stamina. They're all really hard to have.

Let's go over more of your advice. You say it's important to "sing in your own voice" and not be discouraged by your weaknesses. For instance, Bob Dylan's not known for being a great singer.
No, he's not, but he has a way of circumventing his limitations. All artists have limitations, and the best way to circumvent them is to not worry about them too much. If you try to do everything, you're going to imitate somebody else.

You also say the best way to get approval is to not need it.
If you have confidence in your work, you send out a different vibe than if you don't. If you're someone who's supremely gifted in what you do, like John Coltrane, you don't need approval. That confidence in yourself has to be built up organically.

Some people naturally have a "pissed-off gene," you say, which makes them generally dissatisfied with their lives. Do creative people need that gene to be successful?
All the people I know who are successful and talented have it. There's a certain kind of itch to them that makes them willing to work 16-hour days.

Because they're pissed off?
Not necessarily angry, but restless, itchy. I'm suggesting that [gene] is a good thing, because that's what gets us out of bed in the morning...

So there you have it - take all that restless energy, get creating whatever you choose ,and take it to the world...


  1. Oh I sooooo needed to read this post today...have to try and get a hold of that bops There's a giveaway for a couple of my anatomical plates that you, or somebody you know, might like...head over to http://aussie-handmade-giveaway.comok!

  2. Hmm, I think I'd be a lot better off if I wasn't seeking approval all the time, thanks for the read.

  3. There are always people that will love what you do and others that will hate it - same with everything in life that's why it is so important to find out what you like yourself - probably an ongoing thing for most of us. Thought provoking post.

    Have nominated you for a blog award but no pressure to blog about it - just put you down as a nice new blog I have discovered. Lou.

  4. I needed this. Sometimes we need to just do what we love, regardless of what other people think.

  5. I think I have that gene! I'm glad it has a good use. And I think I have passed it on to my children as well! This looks like a good read.


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