Hey guys, a bunch of arcane shit happened on my server over the holidays and I just got done putting out all the fires. Sorry I missed an update on Saturday. I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me.
Except no, fuck that. I’m not sorry. I’m not your dancing monkey. I started this website three years ago because I knew a lot of myths I was really excited about, and I wanted to yell them into the internet. It was fun. It was a fun, dumb thing I was doing on a free blogger site. People started paying attention, including some very influential people, and suddenly I was earning ad revenue and selling t-shirts and owning my own server space. I developed a “web presence.” I even got a book deal through this site, and that has been a phenomenal opportunity. I had a really great time writing that book, and I’ve been humbled and elated by the response to it, especially recently.
The problem, though, is this fucking update schedule. The whole time I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve been reading other people’s blogs and webcomics. I’ve watched creator after talented creator stop making art and start making product, because that’s what the internet demands. I’m not writing anymore, I’m “creating content.” I can’t think of a more efficient way to kill passion.
Many of you have probably noticed that I’ve been kinda reaching recently. Every week, when Saturday looms up, I no longer think “hey, I get to come up with a myth!” I think, “Aww fuck. I’ve gotta read another fucking myth.” That’s shitty. Nobody wins in that situation. I feel like a hack, and you guys get to read hack writing. So I’m making a change.
See, I noticed something when I wrote about my experience at the shop-along. People were excited. It started a discussion. And it was fun to write. Really fun. So fun, in fact, that I want to do more of that stuff.
This site will still update on Saturdays, but it won’t be myths for a while. Instead, I’ll tell you stories from my life. I’ve had a lot of shit happen to me, (like the aforementioned shop along, as well as this and this), and I think you’ll find it amusing. Think of it as another kind of mythology. I’ll still post myths when I come across one I’m really passionate about, so please continue to send me your recommendations. One of my favorite things about having this site is that you all have taken it upon yourselves to educate me, both mythologically and critically. All I ask is that you bear with me while I try something new.
I believe it’s customary to violently reject all change to much-loved websites, but I hope you forgive me if I decide to break with tradition and tell you I couldn’t possibly be more excited. I really enjoy your words and it’s good to know that producing them will stay enjoyable too.
You’re awesome and your blog’s awesome.
Btw I feel where you’re coming from. I enjoy writing stories, too, and recently took up a creative writing major. Suddenly, I’ve got deadlines for class. Writing becomes a chore, rather than an insane psychological retraction into my imagined happy place.
In the below link demi-god John Cleese talks about being creative, referencing recent (for, like 1970, but still true) psych research. I think what he says about creative/play modes and “get shit done” modes is pretty darn relevant
Yeah, I get it. I’ve been focusing on a trilogy so web posting is mostly going by the wayside.
People loved what you did because your passion showed. If you replace that with a sense of obligation….yeah, man. Don’t do that. You tell a good story, and it caught enough eyes that it turned into something cool, something that might get you paid. And that’s awesome! But yeah, obligations. That turns this awesome thing, where you pour your passion out to us and we love it and you get some money maybe, because holy crap you deserve to, into a grind. Good on you for standing up for your own joy. Tell stories. They don’t have to be about gods banging an assortment of household objects. ‘s all good.
I support this 100%. Keep your passion alive, by any means necessary.
I think I’ll enjoy reading your writing, even when you write about washing dishes in a Sunday afternoon.
Still waiting for another chapter of The Silmarillion, though. And may I suggest The Children of Hurin? The main character’s life makes Niobe’s life looks like a holiday in comparison.
I look forward to seeing what comes next. And regardless of what direction you take from here, I will always treasure KNIIIIIFE ARRRRRMMMMSSSS!
You’re doing the right thing. When you’re old and ragged, you’ll be reminiscing on the fun/ crazy shit that went down in life, not how much money you made. Embrace your inner epicurean!
Aww. Oh well, all good things and so on.
At this time, might I suggest Long, Broad, and Sharpsight? Lots more where that came from, mind you, but that one almost writes itself.
As everyone here, I write to send my support and best wishes.
No one demands a myth a week and we’ll be glad to read what you’ll write whenever you upload it.
I just started reading this blog a couple months ago, and I ended up taking a one month break from basically the whole rest of the internet because I was spending all my internetting time reading your myths and laughing myself silly. I love mythology (I grew up reading a lot of Greek and Norse stuff, and I majored in Japanese lit so I know theirs pretty well, too) and there’s really something inventive and special about the way you tell them. I also totally get that burnout sucks, and no one wants that. I loved your shopping adventure, and would be jazzed to read more stuff like that, and I’d also be super jazzed to see you writing myths that you’re excited about.
Sorry this is super long, but you might be interested in Japanese setsuwa- they can be hard to find, but they’re old Japanese (mostly) Buddhist stories about women turning into snakes and seducing/eating priests and demons and crazy stuff like that. The Demon at Agi Bridge and Other Japanese Tales by Haruo Shirane has a decent amount of those and other crazy Japanese stories that you haven’t covered here, and it’s on google books, if that helps.
Hey I love your myths but you are definitely not the first person that I follow that ended up with a lot more demand for “regular updates”. As much as I love weekly, I would love to see stuff you’ve had time to write out and think through. Your work is fantastic and I can’t wait to read more of your personal experiences as well as the retellings!
I support you, dude. Do whatever you need to do to keep on being awesome.
Honestly? As long as nothing bad happens to you, I’ll be happy. You’re too awesome for any bad karma though, and I’m excited to hear more personal stories from you.
Makes perfect sense to me.
Suggestion: Guest posts on myths?
(Folklore & Mythology major here. happy to contribute)
Your writing style and sense of humor are what got me addicted to this site. Mythology is nifty and all, but I’m pretty sure you could write about baking muffins and I’d still be entertained.
As for regular updates, I really don’t want you to suffer on your readership’s behalf. You owe us nothing. Sure, I would LOVE for you to keep posting quality content every single week for all eternity, but I’m not going to throw a tantrum when you stop.
In the meantime, I’ll be quite happy to read whatever it is you feel like writing.
No no, you make yourself happy, and the writing will come and be awesome, no matter what you’re writing about. I love the myths, but I love the life stuff, too. You are a hell of a writer, and it would be terrible if it wasn’t fun for you, too.
Hey, good for you, man. It’s great to see you doing what you love first. This website will always be one of my favorites!
Hooray for self-awareness!
Do whatever you need to be happy, Ovid. You’ve most certainly earned it. 🙂
I’m actually more excited about this than I was about your myths. Your writing and your passion is the magic, not the subject.
I shall check the site more often now that I know what you are up to.