“Fuck what you know. Fuck what you believe. I am the architect of my destiny.”
-James “Buddy” Neilsen.
With language like that in the epigraph, I think that it’s fair to say that this post won’t ever be making an appearance on the freshly pressed page. But then, my language is abrasive at the best of times, so I guess I’ll have to live without the vindication of being a pressed writer for a little while yet. Nevertheless, let’s kick this off and get down to why I’ve chosen to feature the lyrics of a post-hardcore band in my epigraph, and what it has to do with a page dedicated to the trials and tribulations of my writing career.
Well, the simple answer as to why I chose Neilsen’s lyrics is this: I like them. And I like hardcore music, so I thought that I would feature them just as I have before with artists like Adrian Fitiplades and Max Bemis. But the more in depth answer, the one that actually makes this whole post worthwhile is that right now those three little phrases resonate with me more than anyone could ever truly understand. In fact, the lyrics of the entire album the epigraph was chosen from resonate with me to such an extent that I spent the better part of two hours today deciding between the lines I chose to use and the following:
When you look in the mirror
Are you proud of what you see?
When you look in the mirror
Are you the person you thought you’d be?
The truth is that I’m not quite the person that I thought I’d be right now. I thought that a few things in my personal life would have panned out a little differently than how they have. I’ve been a little emotionally fragile lately, and thankfully I’ve had something constructive to focus my time on…But on a writing front, I’m more than I ever thought possible. That’s right; with less than two weeks to go until I head to New York, I’m so fucking confident in myself and what I have created that I can’t wait to pitch my heart out. Right now when I look in the mirror, I’m damned proud of what I see. I’m a writer with passion and a goal. And regardless of whether I secure a contract in the USA, I know that I’m taking positive steps in the right direction for my career.
Just as Neilsen growls in the song Canine, I am the architect of my destiny. Every single time I sit down and put pen to page I am constructing the blueprints of not just a tale of fiction, but of my life and how I want it to be. When I submit those blueprints to an editor for revision they are given the opportunity to improve and come one step closer to being completed. And when I pitch my story to agents in a foreign city I’ll have the opportunity to see those blueprints come to life. All I need is for one person to say yes and the foundation of my story and my vision will come to life.
But if I’m feeling so confident, and so enthused, why did I chose lyrics that are so explicit? Well, because that’s just who I am. When I’m confident I feel indestructible. And in true Chris Nicholas fashion I have constructed a novel and a pitch that defies what is considered the norm within the publishing industry. When I start my pitch I don’t want to be perceived as just another aspiring author; I want to be seen as a force to be reckoned with. I want to be seen as a man capable of rising above the slush pile with a story to tell and the fire in his stomach to do it. So fuck what you know about publishing. And fuck what you believe is acceptable within the industry. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.
Two weeks. That’s how long I have to wait until I can pitch myself against the best in the industry and see how I compare. And for all of my bravado I am fully aware that I could walk away from the whole experience with nothing. But even if I do, just by making it this far I have achieved something incredible.