Dear Artists: You Gotta be Patient.

It’s an irony to write this.

Right now, it’s almost midnight, and I’ve been working all day. But it’s alright – it doesn’t feel like work. I’m just thankful that Charles took me to the brewery for a while so I could sip on a beer and enjoy a change of pace.

But anyways, the reason this blog post can’t wait is because I’m … not patient.

can be patient. I’m patient with kids and animals. I’m patient with the extreme couponer in the checkout line. I’m patient with baking bread and gardening.

But for some reason, when it comes to my art or my life’s work… I’m all

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I’ve always been like this. When I was 9, I wanted my first book published when I was 12. I read a book written by a kid younger than me, and I was sure as hell that if I got crackin’, I could publish my first novel by age 12. Casual.

And when I started writing songs when I was 12, I was determined to become a published musician by sixteen.

I’ve always felt like I was running out of time. I have to leave a legacy! Accomplish my life’s work! Write two songs by the weekend! Write a four-generation epic novel by fall!

Everyone’s like, “Rebecca. Chill.”

“Good art takes time” they say.

I worried so much about getting everything done, that I forgot to relish the creative process.

If I write in my journal every day, scribble down some lyrics, and take time to create, than I’m doing the best I can. 

I had to get used to being patient with my own process. A song unfolds slow like a flower. A story winds long like a trail.

I had to get used to being patient with people and to respect their processes. I had to get used to not knowing the answers and not knowing the future.

 

I am a writer because I love the act of writing. I love spending hours playing guitar. What’s the rush?

Lately I’ve felt impatient. I want to be better – sight read advanced sheet music with ease, shred on a guitar solo, finish that song that’s been marinating since June. I want to publish more work, get another EP out, write five more songs. Go! Go! Go!

On one hand, it’s good to have a sense of urgency as an artist.

Feeling that fire under your ass can be the difference between making progress and flipping through Instagram while eating Cheerios.

The movers and shakers are an impatient bunch. That’s why they’re out there right now, organizing the next revolution.

But when it comes to beating yourself up because you didn’t get as far as you wanted?

Chill.

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Art by the lovely Hayden Ireland.