Hope Is Never Redundant
Updated: Mar 17, 2020
I was asked to pitch article ideas on the topic of COVID-19 to a website I write for. My main pitch was: "12 Ways Artists Can Cope With The Global Pandemic". It was designed to focus on the effects of uncertainty and the physical lifestyle changes we're all dealing with in the wake of the spread of novel coronavirus.
The response I got back was that my topic "feels slightly overdone in the article publication world", and they needed something unique to offer their readers. A new topic was suggested in earnest, one that had nothing to do with challenges of uncertainty, mental health, or the scope of what the artistic community is dealing with globally.
I was conflicted about responding. This is a new job for me, and I felt instinctively like starting any kind of conflict at a time when togetherness, patience, and compassion are our top priorities, should be avoided. But I responded honestly. I was confused and deflated at being shut down and asked to pen a how-to resource that seemed to leave out the world's cries for heroes and hope. I respectfully passed on the pitch they sent me and noted that I will be brainstorming different ideas in the coming week to pass along.
Here's the thing. An online publication team has every right to ask me for something different. I don't want to target them with any additional frustration or miscommunication.
BUT, I feel called, right now, in light of this, to say... that if you or someone you know has a message of hope or kindness or creative inspiration, DO NOT HESITATE TO SHARE. If you have an idea for uplifting content, now is the time to act. Waste no time worrying about whether your hopeful message has already been said. The world is never finished receiving hopeful messages. Hope, quite simply, is never redundant.
If hope could be redundant, we wouldn't rewatch films we've already seen to get inspired.
If hope could be 'overdone', we wouldn't endlessly look to creative heroes, self help gurus, comedians, or historical figures for deeper insight into what we're feeling and why.
I think aiming to endlessly find a fresher, more unique take on hope is a worthy task. I think framing inspiring stories from new perspectives is essential. But I don't think a chance to spread an uplifting, empowering message should ever be ignored just because that message has been spread before. I will fundamentally support that message in every form, however redundant it might feel to someone else. Also, there are billions of people out there, and I don't think it makes sense to think they've all seen the same content from the same sources right when they needed it most. There's no cap on telling the world you believe in it, and no limit on encouraging humans to feel better. I am all too aware of the need for reminders of empathy and genuine optimism, no matter how many already exist, and I will work to uncover and write and share those reminders, regardless of whether their market appears saturated. My work on myself is never done, and our work as people who want the world to improve is never finished either, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.
Keep spreading hope, my friends.
*Disclaimer: I encourage mindfulness on any content being shared that might contain misinformation at a time when we need only the facts. If you're sharing uplifting news, please make sure it's real. But, please, do not be deterred from spreading your hopeful personal experiences and anecdotes.
***Update: in the time it took me to write this blog, I was able to pitch a new article that meets the requirements of something 'less redundant' as well as hopeful and inspiring. Stay tuned for the final product!
Also, I published my initial pitch as yesterday's blog: For Artists Coping With The Coronavirus. Feel free to share or comment. :)
Thank you, with truly my whole heart, for continuing to read and encouraging me to keep writing. It has been a humbling and healing journey, writing every day for the past 7 weeks.