mercurialkiss said: Has anyone ever referred to you as a "tortured genius"? What's your stance on the term? Do you believe that one must have a mental illness in order to create truly deep and worthwhile music/writing/art? Just something I've been pondering myself lately
I don’t think so, but then again I’ve never cared to ask, nor would I pay any attention to it if they do. I think having any sort of affliction (be it mental or otherwise) and being able to be creative either through that, because of that, or in order to deal with that, is a great and positive thing.
Sadly, I think it is insinuated that you are thought of as less than if there is something about you that isn’t “normal” or doesn’t function in the “normal” way. This is a giant bummer and I call shenanigans on that. I don’t know if there is anything wrong with me now and I stopped caring to find out what it might have been years ago. I choose to define what I may or may not have as, “Idiosyncrasies.” This allows me to move on and simply exist.
I am no expert. But I can tell you this: It took me 20+ years to deal with my shit and it wasn’t until I let go and stopped trying to define things that things started getting really good. I may or may not be bipolar, have crippling panic attacks, and exhausting OCD. I may or may not be an alcoholic. I made a decision to turn my life around and set about it slowly, day after day, step by grueling step, over the course of several years. I don’t know when it changed or how it changed, but it did and it is of no concern to me how that happened or what it all means.
I apologize. I tend to veer all over the place when trying to be concise in a short amount of time. These are my rambling thoughts.
To get back on point, I believe that anyone can create. There is no prerequisite. If you happen to have something different about you, whatever that is, I say use it. Tom Waits had a great quote that I am about to butcher. He said something to the effect of, “My favorite singers and artists are the ones who took that thing about them that seemed like a liability and turned it into an asset.”
I was a shy kid with asthma and a stuttering problem form Mahtomedi, MN. Yet somehow I made that work for me.