Manufacturing guy-at-large.

From my own archives: On Content

Added on by Spencer Wright.

What follows here is excerpted from a personal email I wrote earlier this year. It remains representative of how I feel about my own content creation - reckless enthusiasm and all :)

It appears slightly edited, for formatting and privacy. 

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The way I see it, there are really two types of content: curatorial and original.  

There are a *lot* of curatorial blogs. The best, e.g. Kottke, are *excellent.* The worst are just commonplacing, which is actually pretty cool. I suppose you could argue that curation in a digital age should occur in Evernote or a similar document storing platform, but at that point, who cares. It's fun to have an aesthetic perspective, and if all you do is reblog photos, what's wrong with that?

Original content is, to me, closer to the heart. I like this quote, from a recent post by Keenan Cummings:

But regardless of wherever that team and those designers might fall on the criticism-worthy spectrum, I’ve learned to not question the intentions and sincerity of anyone. It hurts my work. It makes me cynical, competitive, fickle, distracted. My heart is in the work that I do, and I do better to assume it’s the same for others.

But that's just from my perspective as a viewer - and I certainly don't mean to imply that you're any of those things.

As a creator it is - at least for me, in the point in my career - even more important that I defend shitty content. Shitty content is "a way to make your soul grow." And if you want to work in the idea economy - or, I mean *fuck,* any economy where you need half a brain to succeed - the best way to show employers/clients that you're worth their time is to: 1) be able to show them *something,* and 2) have been creating that something for long enough that you've gotten halfway decent at it.

viz., my blog.  My blog is silly - the things I write are *way* too long, and I'm too focused on creating a long argument that's based partly on something personal. I love writing this shit, but I'm still way green at it.  And if I want to work at a place like [REDACTED] - and don't I? - then I *need* to be doing it all. the. time. Or else someone else who is will get the job from under me.

With regard to the light drowning out the stars: I think it's not nearly as bad as that, you just need to believe in it. Spielberg

You shouldn’t dream your film, you should make it! If no one hires you, use the camera on your phone and post everything on YouTube. A young person has more opportunities to direct now than in my day. I’d have liked to begin making movies today.

But then again, consider who's talking. *Everything* is important to me right now, and remarkably little of it is getting looked at by anyone - let alone anyone of note. But I'm okay with that. Anonymity is good for me right now; it gives me the opportunity to make mistakes. Just give us all a year or two - once we've had a little more practice, we'll be showing *everyone.*