Fun Fact: I make fun of myself a lot.
I mean, more than your average person does.
Sometimes I’ll just use it as a “clever” way to deflect compliments, other times as a shoddy way to make a cheap joke and I’ll even include it in sentences where I’m explaining how I insult myself a lot, how meta!
Seriously though, low-self esteem issues sucks.
And it doesn’t help that being a slacker means I have to deal with a lot of contradictions in my life. I put a lot of my time, effort and days into this site. I write, edit and promote everything to do with this site and I hardly get any help for any of it. Which is fine given that I don’t ask for any help and I sure as hell don’t expect a team of kind strangers to mysteriously appear out of nowhere to do so.
Still, being a slacker under state-capitalism is hard. And trying to do my best to make my patrons happy and make sure they feel like they’re getting their moneys worth is often on the forefront of my mind. Am I doing well enough? Do they like what I’m doing?
…Though maybe I should ask them instead of just wondering.
And of course, it’s not just the patrons I have. It’s my general audience too! Am I living up to the title of this site? Am I helping people in their day to day lives during their shitty jobs? Have I ever helped someone slack off at their jobs so they could take better care of themselves? Have I ever influenced someone to quit their job?
…Seriously have I? ‘Cause if I have, I wanna know!
I try my best, but in the end my Patreon page says it all, I’m a “hardworking slacker”.
People ask me how I can be a self-described slacker if I have so many projects in the work.
How can I be a slacker if I have 10 different writing projects for my Anarchist Township blog, a bunch of other essay ideas, some short story ideas, some flash fiction ideas, a book proposal and I’m writing for C4SS at least four times a month if not more? And that doesn’t count all of the other organizing, logistics, pet sitting and whatever else!
It’s tough to rectify the term slacker with all of this, I know, I get it.
Thankfully, I don’t owe any of y’all shit.
No, but seriously, my definition of “slacking” doesn’t mean I don’t engage passionately in things that interest me. Even the hardened of slackers gave their all for things they like. Look at The Big Lebowski and how The Dude would try to make sure what mattered to him really mattered to him. I mean…the rug really did tie the place together…
But that’s all besides the point relative to the title, I suppose. Maybe I’m not a very good slacker, but then my retort to this has historically been, “well okay, then I’m slacking on being a slacker!” Eloquent, I know.
Let’s address the title of this article though: Why do I keep writing, hounding myself day after day, saving articles and videos online for future articles, doing entire chapter by chapter reviews of big books and for less than $50 a month?
Well…cause I love it?
I mean, I’m doing this so I can get paid, sure. But I also write because I genuinely enjoy it. You know what would be worse than writing all of these articles in a month just to get (basically) a dollar a day?
Not writing anything at all.
Yeah, that’d be worse. A lot worse. You know why? Because I fucking love writing. And it doesn’t really matter to me if others are listening or they aren’t. I first and foremost write for myself. If other people like my stuff then it’s gratifying and helps me keep going. But I’m an individualist at the end of the day. Y’alls patronage and viewership and readership means the goddamn world to me, it really does. But at its core it isn’t what keeps me going day after day.
In the end I do this for myself. And I don’t do it to save the world, I don’t do it to save the rain forests (sorry, Captain Planet, I don’t do it for my local community and I sure as hell don’t do it for the money even if it’s much appreciated.
All of those things help, but at the core I’m writing so I don’t fucking shoot myself in a dark alleyway sometime come tomorrow. I write so I can actually express myself as authentically as possible. I write so I can feel myself and my presence in the world. In some sense I do want to impose the force of my will onto the word, but I want to do it through my words and not through my actions. I’d rather not do this physically (especially to other people) so my next best chance of asserting my uniqueness is to assert it through symbology of the written word.
So it’s not “work”.
Work would never involve myself in such a deep and passionate way. If I never worked another day in my goddamn life I’d be beaming with delight. But if I could never write in my life after this post, well you know where to find me.
But would I keep writing even when no one gave a shit?
Yeah, I would.
What’s important to me what my “higher purpose” so to speak is myself and satisfying myself. Like I said, I’m not expecting to save the world with my writings. I hope I can help others and give them the best of what I have to offer to do so. But if it doesn’t benefit anyone but myself, how can I say that I wouldn’t keep doing this?
And fortunately I do have a life besides writing.
As much as I love writing, I also play bass, I engage in dialogue with friends about interesting subjects, I have people whom I love dearly who I spend time with, I have Youtube channels and Netflix shows I watch for fun. I have family members who I talk about things with and spend special occasions with.
In the end, someone somewhere does care.
And that person is me.
Thanks for writing, Jennifer.
If you care about my writings you can always make a donation to my Patreon!
At this point I’m more than half-way to starting a monthly podcast for Abolish Work!
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