There’s something fake about perfect.
“The absence of flaw in beauty is itself a flaw. “
— Havelock Ellis
Just by the fact that you breathe and bleed, you are weak. You have entered the human world, and by that very birth you have flaws.
Here’s the good news weakling, you’re not alone 😉. You’re surrounded by 8 billion flawed individuals to share your imperfection with. What’s possibly the best way to reach out this audience?
Share in your weakness.
You are unique in your you-ness, but you are not unique in your flaws or suffering. However, the nature of your flaws can be as individual as your own DNA. You’re unique way in dealing with them may also be different than others.
Strangely enough, as flawed as we are as a species and individuals, we are interested in reading about others’ shortcomings.
We may have different reasons for this interest. Some may like to read about someone overcoming an obstacle. Others take some sort of joy in the downturns of their fellow man.
And some are just interested in knowing everything about people interesting; even their dirty laundry. That’s why tabloid journalism is still going strong.
Take Advantage Of Your Weakness
We’ve established that weakness is a common human trait. We’ve also noticed that people find themselves attracted to tales of weakness like a magnet.
Well, Sherlock, what are you waiting for? It sounds like you have some things to write about.
Think about all the things you generally suck at. Do you have some kind of phobia? Have you failed at something recently? Did you piss somebody off the past year?
Well Mr. / Miss Screw Up, we have a position for you. A Writing position!
Some may call this therapy.
I call it content.
Since you screwed up once, I’m sure you’ll screw up again as well. I can see it in your eyes.
Break out your pen and your keyboard, you got some work to do. Let’s look at your weaknesses and screw ups. Let’s examine what went wrong.
Maybe it can generate some laughs.
Maybe it can be a learning experience.
Maybe it can be a form of shared grief.
Whatever way you use it, make it work for you.
Since we’re human and these flaws and weaknesses keep coming, you have endless content. Your screw ups and weaknesses are content gold!
The Beauty In Imperfection
As crazy as it sounds, there’s a certain beauty in imperfection. Something perfect has a way of losing its humanity. Something without flaw has a way of losing its realness.
There’s something fake about perfect.
Almost utopian. There is no utopia, so true perfection has plastic quality to it.
There’s actually a Japanese art form / philosophy that strives for imperfection.
Wabi-sabi:this Japanese term means “a way of living that focuses on finding beauty within the imperfections of life and accepting peacefully the natural cycle of growth and decay.”
Jack White, a great musician, once showed off his favorite song. The song was an old record with a single man singing. The man sang out of key and there no musical accompaniment behind him.
Just a man singing out of key while he himself clapped along. This was Jack White’s favorite song. It was so imperfect, there was just something perfect, raw, and real about it.
This is your key.
This is your method.
This is your way.
This is a world of computers that can tune singing voices until they’re spectacular. This is a world of filters that can make pictures flawless. This is a world of editing that can make films perfect.
But it’s fake. Imperfection, weakness, and failure are real.
These tools will truly make you a better writer. These are the tools that are forgotten in a perfect, plastic world.
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