Friday, October 29, 2010

Art and Angst - BFFs

Ever been riddled with angst? Feeling the chill in your bones, wondering if you've got the goods.

I'm writing a new novel at the moment, and I'm looking for the magic. Hoping, when I peer into my bag of literary goodies, I will find it - that truth, that shine, that brilliance. Wondering if it was ever in there in the first place.

But the task is to write, and so write I do. Clacking away, muttering to self and computer, wondering - always wondering - if any of this is of any merit.

I'm comforted by the fact that this deep down doubt is universal in the world of art and artists. Let me introduce you to someone who has poured out this artist's angst in a way I simply adore.
Tanya Davis is a Canadian, from Newfoundland (which accounts for her accent - she has a true "Newfie" accent I love [no, I don't sound like that when I speak - I sound exactly like Queen Elizabeth]). Her wonderful accent is the reason I posted the words to the song below. She is a poet, singer, songwriter, and more. I included her website at the bottom of this post in case you want to find out more about this wonderful artist.
I love how she expresses the questions all artists feel, deep in their bones.I wondered what would be the worth of my words in the world
if i write them and then recite them are they worth being heard
just because i like them does that mean i should mic them
and see what might unfurl

i think of the significance of my opinions here
is it significant to be giving them does anybody care
just because i'm into this does that mean i should live like it
and really do i dare

art, art i want you
art you make it pretty hard not to
and my heart is trying hard here to follow you
but i can't always tell if i ought to

so i pondered the point of my art in this life
if i make it will someone take it and think it's genuine
will they be glad that i did 'cause they got something good out of it
will they leave me and be any more inspired

i question the outcome of the outpouring of myself
if i tell everyone my stories will this keep me healthy and well
will it give me purpose, to this world some sort of service
is it worth it, how can i tell

art, art...

Here are my thoughts about self-doubt: better not to dwell on it. Better to write, and keep writing for purposes that are bigger than me, for reasons I don't need to understand.
I bid you good writing


Nikole Hahn said...

Art or is putting your heart out for anyone to cherish or stomp on. Someone will always disagree. Someone will love it. Someone will hate it. Ultimately, you do it for the one who loves it. There are some messages God pushes across the table to the one He means to hear it. We won't know if our words made a difference until that someday when we fall at Jesus' feet.

Megan Sayer said...

Bonnie this post left me completely lost in thought and much, much research...but probably not for the obvious reasons.

Newfoundland. Wow!!!!! I youtubed the accent, and am about to do some reasearch into the history and people - so excited (yeah okay, I'm a nerd).

2 things:
Do you have any Newfoundland-set literature you could recommend? I'd love to have a Newfoundland experience, (like I had a Greenland experience with Peter Hoeg's Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow - spectacular armchair travel).

And do you REALLY speak EXACTLY like Queen Elizabeth? Oxbridge education? Or are you lying and really want to go "oat of the hoase" with all the other Canadians..?

Sorry. I really am. My curiosity has won over my sense of social decorum today : )

Megan Sayer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bonnie Grove said...

Nikole: It really is about being able to put ourselves out there - and there is fear in that. It seems so easy for some people to tear a book apart. I'm trying to learn that if I don't like a book, chances are I'm not part of the target audience, and to be gentle with the work, and the author. It's me working on the whole "do unto others" thing. :)

Megan: Glad you enjoyed the video. There is all kinds of east coast Canadian lit out there - you could start with a wonderful anthology of Canadian short stories. It seems to me that many of Canada's best short story writers live in Newfoundland.

Uh... about the queen - No, I don't sound like her when I talk. I was just being cheeky.
But truthfully, I've never met a Canadian who talks the way Americans think we talk. Aboot, and oat, and all that.
Then again, when I was in California at a writer's conference, every twenty minutes a lovely American would squeeze my arm and say, "I love your accent." To which I would reply, "I don't have an accent." and everyone would giggle.

Megan Sayer said...

Thanks Bonnie, I'll check some out.

And sorry to disillusion you, but my description of the Canadian accent comes purely from watching years of "You Can't Do That On Television" reruns. Are you going to tell me that that was all a bad American conspiracy? Or a plot designed by aliens? Kevin Kubucheski was so hot!

And hey, accents are so subjective. Every year or so I meet someone who asks me which part of England I'm from, or when I left New Zealand. I'm Tasmanian! I live 40km from where I grew up...what's with that? I don't think I have an accent either : )