the fine print: Mary Gauthier’s letter to a young songwriter

April 11, 2014

The music distribution platform called CD Baby has started a series of letters to young songwriters from established musicians. Mary Gauthier is the first to contribute. What I like about this letter is that while the advice does contain a few tips that are specific to music-making, it can also be read as a letter to a young or new maker of anything. I like this passage in particular:

You must learn how to reject acceptance and accept rejection. People’s opinions of you and your work are irrelevant. The search for love and applause has no place in the creative process. Here is what I know: thriving artists suffer from a feeling of inferiority, a feeling of reaching for something that keeps being just outside our grasp. We make contact with it, and then it turns to smoke. It cannot be held. So our work involves a constant striving.”

Click here to read the full letter.


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