Transitions, Ink

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Sunday Scribblings #35: Nemesis

This week Sunday Scribblings prompts us to write about Nemesis. So here goes.

Envy. Remember Amadeus? Salieri was so keenly aware of Mozart's genius that he (Salieri) let it consume him. Why can't I be so gifted, obsessed Salieri. How can this vulgar brute produce music of such divine inspiration? As depicted in the film, Salieri's envy of Mozart took both of them down in the end (not sure how true to the facts that rendition is, but nevermind). The thing of it is, you can't envy someone without admiring their talents or whatever it is they have that you want for yourself. But you can admire someone without envying them. So where does the envy come from? It has to come from wanting what they have but somehow thinking that you are incapable of having it too and that without it, you are in some way inferior. So envy is pernicious, the downfall, ruin, undoing of Salieri because Salieri allowed his own gifts to be diminished in the face of Mozart's.

I experience this sometimes when I read gifted authors. Rather than just enjoying their work, I let their talent diminish my own, as if unless I can write like them, I have no right to write at all. That can really put the stopper on flow, and we all know how important flow is to creativity. There is a lot of creative space in the universe. Enough that it's not necessary to begrudge others their gifts and talents.

I don't want envy to be my nemesis, but I do fear it. I am not a visual artist, so I can't draw envy, but if I could, it would really, really ugly. And green, of course.

8 comments:

Becca said...

I'm well acquainted with the green monster, as it pertains to other authors and musicians whom I most admire. And you're correct when you say it comes from a sense of inferiority - the feeling that I'm just never going to be that good, no matter how hard I try!

Thanks for reminding me that the uninverse has room for lots of talent and gifts of all sizes!

GoGo said...

I've had the envy bug. It creeps in when you least expect it like bed Bugs in hotels.

Thanks for the reminder to not let it seccumb us, I'd rather let go then let myself become inferior to it.

As for writing, you have nothing to worry about!

Rethabile said...

"I let their talent diminish my own, as if unless I can write like them, I have no right to write at all."
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Welcome to the club. I had to fight with my guts and my conviction to overcome this. I may not write those I admire (I don't really want to), but I write, like me.

Rethabile said...

I had to come back to greet you formally, after discovering where you come from and where you'll be going in a few weeks. So, greetings. And have fun down there.

paris parfait said...

I think each of us has our own writing style and while we can admire others' writing, we must also embrace our own. After all, if everyone wrote the same kind of things in the same style, reading would become boring. Stay true to yourself and your own style and don't worry about others.

FatCharlatan said...

My Envy Monster is a bitch. I'm constantly putting her in her place, which ain't easy.

Repeater said...

I can't even tell you how many times I have envied you, miss ti. I kind of like the feeling though. It spurs me on.

TI said...

I'm glad to hear that I am not the only one...!