The Company We Keep

The Company We Keep

During my sophomore year in high school, I became a bit obsessed with the Romantic poets — particularly Samuel Taylor Coleridge (because of Rush’s “Xanadu” and Iron Maiden’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”). When I found out more than a few of the Romantic writers hung out together, I thought that was the coolest thing. I imagined what it must have been like and dreamed that one day, I would be part of something bigger than me like that.

The Funny Thing About Movements

The Romantics, the Transcendentalists, the Beats: all movements…in hindsight!

At the time, it was just a group of people with similar interests and goals pushing one another to get better. As a fan of comic books, similar groups exist within the medium; in fact, some of the people I hung out with when I wrote independent comic books have gone on to greater things. I say that not to boast that I was in good company, but because it hit me one day: these movements weren’t movements at the time.

You Might Be a Part of Something Right Now

It’s not like Jonathan Franzen, Jeffrey Eugenides, David Foster Wallace, and Mary Karr got together, settled on a secret handshake, and decided they would simply become a thing. They were just four friends who wrote books.

If you write, paint, play music, juggle, whatever — even if it’s a group of people online you support and who support you — that’s a group with potential.

So many times we daydream about being part of the groups and movements we look up to, not recognizing that we might already be in the midst of something bigger than we ever imagined at this very moment!

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