A couple of years later after being introduced to poetry in primary school a creative writing competition landed at my feet!
I thought ‘why not’…
The theme for the competition was: road safety!
I don’t remember much about what I wrote except one line…
‘You don’t want to be like superman flying into the hedges’
That’s all I remember but…
I don’t believe in competition, or awards as a writer and an artist.
You see, I did place 4th in that competition but… if you are going to write… you need to do it solely for yourself and for no one else and to get your work out there to as many people and places as possible!
Awards and winning is not going to bring you joy. Now, being a part of the process and telling the truth with your words is going to bring you something much more than a trophy would, or even money, or a quick shag after a gig, or a huge round of applause!
When I was performing in New York I met a local rapper. I said to him: I didn’t see you up there performing tonight. He said to me: I was scoping out the competition. I told him I didn’t believe in competition and that it was all about encouragement! He laughed and told me he was a genius. I laughed and then in the end up we agreed to disagree, as he opened the door of my taxi he waved down for me.
What a gentleman!
I hope he’s spitting in the booth like a demon!
You see, I don’t believe in geniuses either.
If you think about it, everyone is a fucking genius at something!
Even making a cup of coffee is fucking genius.
I think if you stick with an idea long enough you will get the results. And for me… that’s the makeup of a genius.
So, don’t give the fuck up if you believe in your art!
And, don’t be bitter or jealous of someone or anyone else…
Remember: it is about encouragement!
Encourage everyone to tell their truth… laugh and cry with them all as you go through this wondrous process!
Your truth is your truth and your truth will not be for everyone!
I was told recently by a BAFTA winning writer: I absolutely love your stuff, but when you start talking about wanking and blowjobs it ruins your art.
But, that is my truth!
Sex and fucking roses…
Now, you must find yours!
You will deal with rejection. You will deal with criticism. You will deal with ridicule… and a hell of a lot more…
And I ask you, are you up for the adversity?
I know sometimes I felt I wasn’t. But as I matured as an artist, now I take it with a pinch of salt and I fucking love it!
I’m leaving you with a poem called: A lazy weekend poem on acceptance.
I hope it sparks something in you and that’s all you could ask for in your art. Either make them laugh and wet their knickers, or it sparks something in them and if you can combine the two of them together… that’s just fucking sublime!
Go for it!
No matter the cost!
You will lose lovers; you may even lose friends and family members. But how far are you willing to go in order to make it work in your favour and thank the gods who blessed you with this gift, or even gifts?
That’s, all, up, too, you…
As you sit alone in that one room until… those coffees and cigarettes kill you, as you go out a trier or even become a success.
Either way, if you are writing you are already a writer.
That’s what that BAFTA winning writer’s wife told him one day when he was struggling to get published.
If you are doing it…
Then, you, are, it!!!!
Never forget that.
But, go for the publication.
Even perform if you can.
Never stop until… your heart stops!
That will be the one and only killer of your work.
Unless, it is you doing nothing with it.
Don’t let that be the case!
As I said earlier; encouragement! Now, I encourage you to go and find the magazines, the newspapers, the radio stations, the film festivals and even the open mics to share your work through them.
Even if you have no one else’s belief…
Always have your own!
And maybe now… you’ll have me and the belief in this magazine and the people behind it making it all come true.
A lazy weekend poem on acceptance
I wasn’t afraid
Of the physical stuff
Being punched in the face
With small sized bag gloves
Or being choked into submission
Or a skateboard
Going in between my legs
And catching my balls
Or the possibility of spraining
Or even breaking a bone
I was more scared
Of being creative
If you didn’t execute it
You would receive rejection
Or even ridicule
Do not fear a possible death
The aim of acceptance
Is even tougher
Paul Butterfield Jnr