Phenomenal. Thank you so much for saying all of this. Having been a “homeless” writer in the United States, China, and Germany; having spent many years shut out of opportunities for a social life or sometimes even food; and having occasionally had to break away to sit on the riverfront or hang out on a bench just to have a free and “private” space of my own in order to process, write, or cry… I so feel this. I can’t say that my poverty was induced by my desire to become a writer; I came of age in an already-horrible economy, so that certainly gave my bank account a beating right at the starting line. But my creative ambitions do play a role in how my circumstances have evolved, and how much money I still do not have. (At the same time, I’ve learned from experience that my health suffers if I don’t heed my calling and try to box myself into a more “conventional” job. So the financial precariousness feels like the most reasonable tradeoff, oddly enough.)
I’ve already begun writing about my experiences with poverty openly, matter-of-factly, because I feel like doing so is absolutely essential, and because I trust that many people in this era both can relate and are prepared to begin to care. However, I also know the fear of sounding “whiny” and of having my skills dismissed or my opportunities revoked on account of it. It’s a difficult line to walk.
You articulated all of this excellently. I wish you continued inspiration, continued success and fulfillment in your career — and a continued, stable housing situation, with no shortage of food, friends, and all the other foundations of a full and happy life.