For a very long time, I tried to treat my art, my writing, all my talents as the focus of a career. I had a good path for it: there are commercial industries to support such a road. But the more I tried, the more miserable I became and the less money I made. Part of that was out of my control… but the parts that were under my control I flubbed also, because to treat your art as a career you have to make good business choices, whether or not they’re good artistic choices. And I refused to make those sacrifices.

But when I started treating my art as a vocation—and much like the monks, seeking money only as a byproduct of that vocation, as a way to support myself and my own instead of draining their resources supporting me—I started making comfortable money. I became happier. I no longer had to compromise.

Is this a way to make a living? I don’t know. But that’s not my goal anymore. And that’s how it had to be, because if the art is a calling putting any other goal before making the art will sour it.

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