Am I a sellout?

That’s a question we all ask ourselves at some point isn’t it?

At least when we start trying to make some money from our art.

And it can be a huge creative roadblock if we let it stand in our way.

So how do you answer this question?

Well it all depends on your values as a creative.

Once you come to the conclusion that you want to do this for a living you may have to come to terms with playing the game just a little. It’s one of those sacrifices that comes with being a pro.

One of my favorite quotes on the subject comes from Jay-Z on his song “The Bounce” off The Blueprint 2

“For those that think Hov fingers bling bling’n
Either haven’t heard the album or they don’t know English
They only know what the single is, and single that out
To be the meaning of what he is about
And bein I’m about my business, not minglin much
Runnin my mouth, that shit kept lingerin
But no dummy, that’s the shit I’m sprinklin’
The album width to keep the registers ringin’
In real life, I’m much more distinguished
I’m like a bloke from London, England”

Genius does a great breakdown on these lyrics and Hov’s thoughts on the matter.

Years later, one of his own artists, and a personal favorite of mine J. Cole breaks it down for us at Harvard University

Things stop being as black and white as they were before, sacrificing a bit now could have great benefits later.

This isn’t a problem exclusive to music either. All artists seeking success come to a point where they have to decide “Am I a sellout?”

Its up to you to answer that.

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5 ways to beat writer’s block

What does one do with writers block?

Write about writers block!

If you’re frustrated or stuck in your writing endeavors I’m here to help

Here are a few tips that I think will help you out.

1.Write!

I know it sounds like a smart ass answer but seriously, just wing it !

I’m doing it now, all great artists wing it at some point.

The best advice I ever got was to write something every day, just sit down and write for a few minutes. Without worrying about punctuation or spelling or grammar. Whether you write 5 words or 5 pages the important thing is that you’re writing.

2. Consume

Listen to your favorite music,  read your favorite poetry, watch your favorite movie, all of these things can help get the creative juices flowing.

Bonus points if you go out and give new music, literature and movies a chance! Try going out of your comfort zone, after all if you never consume art you can’t produce any. Everything comes from somewhere! 

3.Exercise

I always find that going for a good walk helps me relax and free my mind a bit, a workout may be beneficial to your creative process. 

Aerobic exercises (fancy word for cardiovascular) like jogging swimming and walking are shown to help relieve stress and many artist swear by them.

Maybe little fresh air could help you get out of that writing rut.

4. Look back on your work

I personally keep all of my old notebooks and read through them from time to time.

Find some of your pre-writing block work and read through it. 

Sometimes re-visiting the past experiences and emotions can help you remember why you do this in the first place, and maybe you’ll see something that needs to be further explored. Maybe you just want to top your past self and re write some things!

5.Take a break

Another cliche, but seriously, if all else fails, take a break! 

Live life, spend some time with people you care about, have new experiences, fall in love, fall on your face, pick yourself up again. You can’t write about the world if you’re never in it!

Hope that helps, like and subscribe, share with a friend

And thanks for reading!