Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The Struggle

Never compromise a dream. Do what you must. The fears, beasts, and mountains before you are part of the plan. Stepping stones to a promised land. To a time and place that is so much closer than even you expect. So don't let your eyes deceive you, for even as you read these words, your ship swiftly approaches…    -Mike Dooley
Lemp Mansion Event
Ever force yourself to keep going to stave off the very real prospect of being homeless without shelter? For the first day the stress was horrible and I even considered taking on incredibly low-paying gigs for a very disreputable business. But I have my own writing business going and it's growing. I find what I do for money to be personally edifying as well because it requires learning a lot of new things every day. This includes learning new things at a rapid pace and learning how to be a better writer while reading all kinds of literature.

Lemp Mansion Blues

When I came back to Indiana I decided to stay with a friend who wasn't all mentally there. I gave him money, bought him cigarettes, fast-food, endured his smoking, and was constantly distracted by the trashy shows he watched on TV. I was becoming dependent and my life was becoming stagnate. I was losing my imagination and had to be around someone who had no ambition. I started to lose my own ambition in favor of being entertained by things that distract me from achieving any kind of goals. Luckily I was building my business because when him and I got into a fight I had to leave.

Speakeasy Bar
Old Fashioned Speakeasy Coolers
I came to the realization that no matter where I am, when I am beholden to someone I have to spend a lot of time maintaining a servile and subservient attitude towards that person. This is because I believe that they are doing me favors. They are doing me favors. But this is no way to live life.

When I left his house I didn't know what to do. I called a homeless shelter because I knew the price of hotels would deplete my funds almost immediately. I didn't qualify to stay there (my license was from a different county). So I stayed in a hostel for a few days. Then I took a Megabus to St. Louis and stayed in a hostel there. It was tough because it costs a lot more to stay in a hostel and generate all my own income on the go.

I then found an apartment in St. Louis that I rented day-to-day that was right next to the Lemp Brewery right across from the Lemp mansion. The Lemp Brewery was shut down after prohibition stuck.

The apartment I stayed at was part of a larger mansion that had a speakeasy under it. After attending a jazz event at the Lemp mansion (where the Lemp family stayed, a few of them killing themselves) I got to go down into the speakeasy. A guy at the Lemp mansion begged me to let him come to the speakeasy. I was skeptical of its existence. It DID exist, and it was pretty cool.
Speakeasy Lounge

Hollowed Out Speakeasy TV
Now I'm back in Indiana living day-to-day and trying to convert my income generation from non-fiction writing to fiction writing. When people give advice such as "use the services of a professional editor" all I can do is laugh to myself and wish I could afford that. I need to find a stable place to live before I pay for the services of an editor.

I have a daughter that lives here in Indiana and it's the hardest thing in the world to be away from her. Even when I'm here I can't do things like get her tickets to concerts up in Chicago or down in Indy. If I do manage to buy her anything it's her Mom who takes her. I want to do things I love and not just stuff to get by and earn a menial income. I know my expectation for fiction writing might be unrealistic but I've really got to try. I love telling stories. I love finding out what is going to happen to the characters in my head as they experience this or that situation.

The Sub-Basement of the Speakeasy
I started writing this post in July when I was in St. Louis. Now I'm back in Indiana and my prospects look fairly dim. The only thing to do is to struggle hard, create stuff, and keep going. The opportunity cost of working 10 hours a day for someone else to subsist in depression is not worth the cost.

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