Monday, February 23, 2015
Who dares to ride against me?
Who will challenge my title as the greatest writer on the Internet?
You? Will you risk the ignominious defeat discovered by the millions before you, with your precious, heartfelt, exacting prose left demolished and staked in the desert to be devoured by carrion birds and insects. Are you up for that, because it is coming.
Your novel may have been called the best of the decade by Time Magazine. You may hold an Oscar, a National Book Award, a Pulitzer, a Newbery, a Hugo, or a Booker Prize. You could even be a Nobel laureate who sells a million copies of everything you write. Major motion pictures may be made from every word you whisper. It is possible that every morning you set down to write at Mark Twain's old writing desk, in a seven million dollar beach home you bought from your voluptuous writing proceeds, while a personal assistant runs all your annoying errands.
Indeed, you may even have more than 25 regular readers.
But look around you. Success is nothing. The barest glance at history can tell you that it is for monsters and killers, scoundrels and compromisers, lottery winners and diseases. None of that success will avail you here on my ground. There is no judge you can trick, no outside arbiter, no rules to be better at, no advantage to exact. Popularity cannot save you. These are the unforgiving plains. There is nothing but wind and desolation and beauty and war cries. This is a place where even stone has been beaten and worn to sand. This is my land.
You cannot win here. Look into my eyes, my wild eyes. Look into the eyes of the greatest writer on the Internet. Look at my face. This is the face of success.
And it means nothing.
There is only the truth, and maybe a little love.