Monday, February 29, 2016

The Oscars & Other Bullshit

So, I've never really cared about the Oscars or the Grammies or any other award show at all. And don't take this as some kind of poser, counter-culture, hipster bullshit.

I just didn't really care. It was just something I never got into as I grew up. However, in recent years, my disinterest has turned to disdain the more I learn about not just the Oscars, but awards in general.

Leonardo DiCaprio finally winning got me thinking about the whole thing. Actually, I remember wondering, just a few days ago, before I even realized that the Oscars were this soon or that he had even been nominated, how much it got to him that he hadn't won one yet. I mean, he had basically become a joke. There even exists a game where you pull a floating Oscar constantly out of reach of Leonardo, who is chasing it down the red carpet.

Now, for all I know, maybe it doesn't bother him, but either way, this blends nicely into the point I want to make.

Fuck the Oscars.

For that matter, fuck all the big time award ceremonies. Fuck the New York Times Bestseller list. (Who intentionally snub indie authors.) And the Grammies. Just, you know, a lot of them.

This may seem harsh, and it probably is. I try hard not to get too worked up about things anymore, I've got books to write. But what I'm really raging against here is this idea that a group of rich old people who are ridiculously disconnected from the world at large should have the final say on which movies, books, games or songs are the best.

I mean, when I put it that way, a lot of people will roll their eyes and say "That's not how it is." And yet...consider all the shit that got snubbed because it was ignored by someone who didn't even fucking watch it.

But again, in a broader view, I've come to think that award ceremonies are really just so much pomp and circumstance (and bullshit.) I get the idea of an award. It's meant to recognize excellence in some capacity. And that's cool, for the most part. I'm not one of those people who thinks that 'everyone's a winner!' and no one should have to fail. Because that's not how life works, nor should it, nor should we make anyone believe that that's how it works.

But so often it just seems like these awards get twisted and turned into a high school level popularity contest and/or a power trip. I get that at the end of the day determining something's value is really just people's opinions, but there are some metrics against we can at least partially judge against.

This could probably be better worded and more coherent, but I'm really tired right now and I'm trying to adhere to this schedule of posting something new every Monday and this is what was on my mind.

Ultimately, my point it this: stop fucking worrying about awards. Here's a few criteria you should measure your projects against:

-Did you have fun creating it?
-Are you proud of it?
-Do other people enjoy it?
-What kind of return are you seeing? Can you pay your bills off of it?

There's more, I'm sure, but this is what I think of when I create my work, and I imagine I always will. Especially that last one. Being able to pay my bills from writing books, even though I'm not really making much more than if I had a minimum wage full time job, puts me over the fucking moon with happiness. I mean, seriously, not having to put up with that hell alone is worth the battle.

As a small aside here, I don't, in any capacity, look down on people who work 'regular' jobs. Any jobs, really. I don't really look down on people. What I meant was, I can't fucking stand working jobs that require me to go to a place most days out of the week that I hate and deal with the general public and I'm extremely lucky that I no longer have to.

So yeah...something to think about? (Probably not.)

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