If I Can Make It There…

A few days ago, Bill Wasik, op-ed contributor to The New York Times, wrote a thought-provoking piece about the Internet’s role in creative pursuit and ambition. Today, when living in New York City is basically a financial joke, many ambitious young artists and writers are finding new ways to market and promote themselves.

enoughalienationWho better to try a hand at innovation than those with creativity and energy?

(Pictured: In case you didn’t feel alienated already, by fergusonphotography)

Wasik writes, “In their scope, both the Internet and New York are profoundly humbling: young people accustomed to feeling special about their gifts are inevitably jarred, upon arrival, to discover just how many others are trying to do precisely the same, with equal or greater success.”

New York City is home to the gatekeepers, people who scout and promote talent for a living. These professionals include publishers, music industry executives, and directors. However, so many people have big dreams, and so few get noticed by the gatekeepers. Making it is mostly a matter of luck.

Now, everyone has a Firstnamelastname.com, an Etsy store, a MySpace music page, or a Twitter. Who needs a gatekeeper when you’re resourceful and connected? Millions of young people are resourceful, talented, and connected.

The Internet is a tease. We think we are speaking to an audience of many, but really we don’t know who’s listening. The real problem with the web is that you probably won’t ever know if you’ve profoundly touched someone with a song on MySpace or a poem in an online literary magazine.

Of course, the same problem exists with more traditional forms of media (an author can’t watch her readers, and a musician can’t see who’s listening to his album), but the Internet perpetuates anonymity and distance.

Don’t be discouraged. Just love what you do and believe that it matters.

2 thoughts on “If I Can Make It There…”

  1. Hey Laryssa I really liked this article. I think with the job market how it is right now what your saying kind of transcends even beyond just the music, art and creativity scenes. It is sorta like that with any job now. You get out of college thinking maybe that will impress someone when really you are just one in a million looking fighting for the same spot.
    PS i was thinking about buying a firstnamelastname domain but now I think i might have to be a little more creative with it then that.

  2. I agree completely with this. And it just isn’t about New York (Even though people in NYC have a hard time believing that). It is about the entire world and how it works. Should someone aim at fame and fortune? Or is the creative process enough of a reason to do something? It is the undying question.

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