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  The Ishmael Community: Questions and Answers

The Question (ID Number 735)...

    I am 19 years old musician, and I know I can write and act and create music, but all the roads I can take require at least 5 years to get the ball rolling. I would be content to do just that under any other global conditions. But, my ultimate fear is by the time I can make a difference having gone through the normal procedures; it would be for naught as the nuclear weapons would already be on their way.

    ...and the response:

    I certainly understand the impatience you express in your letter, but I'm afraid I have no remedy for it. There is no shortcut to success as a writer, actor, or musician. No matter how much talent you have, you have to go through the same steps as everyone else. Impatient as I was to bring my ideas to the public, it took me twelve years of work to find a way to do it. If by interning you meaning working for nothing (or very, very little) while you learn, publishers are open to such things (especially small publishers). But even that doesn't mean you're not going to have to go through those dreaded "5 years." I worked in publishing for twelve years before I really understood what it was all about (and I certainly was far from knowing it all). We all face the same problem: we can only do the best we can with what we have.

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