Mean Time

There’s always a down season. Most sports have them, giving athletes an opportunity to practice and sharpen skills before it’s time to test them. Artists take breaks after each project to create new material or gather what they haven’t released yet. Taking a mental break helps as well, making room for things that matter, such as soul-searching, family, health, and finances. Some sum that up into one, much needed vacation where the water is louder than cellphone notifications and animals are more visible than smart cars. This is also a time that consist of just that…mean time, as in time when life appears spiteful towards your aspirations.  

Oppositions will come your way specifically out of malice, whether it’s something or someone. It comes in the form of comments to your Facebook posts or denied compensation for performing a full set in a local setting. People may down the quality of your work, comparing your style or sound to established artists, which can be complimentary, but too much of it can be harming, disregarding your individuality. Your place of employment can be a hindrance, requesting the majority of your time for the sake of the company, leaving no flexibility for creativity. That in itself leaves you with two choices: fight or flight. Neither one is bad in this case. The true concern is whether or not you want to apply your energy to one or the other. The choice is yours, my friend.  

Consider how you plan to combat this problem because not every opportunity comes free of resistance. I’ve been wanting to publish a book for nearly a decade and if there’s been anything holding me back, it’s definitely been of my own doing. I blame the market for not demanding my voice, not having enough money for production of books, and lacking time to edit each piece. Sounds like a personal problem, many of us would say in response to my situation. I agree. These are factors that I can control (opposed to the selling market). What if I couldn’t? What would be my next step? During those dry intervals of planning and pondering, we must continue to build because when the time comes, there will be a need for what we have to offer, whether it’s for someone or some people.  

- Calvin Pennywell Jr.