Many artists discover after strenuous effort that the world is upside down. The best is often not at the top but at the bottom. Banality and self promotion rant in the marketplace of big art, but you can still hear singing in the backwaters, recitals in old-fangled auditoriums, instrumentalists playing in half-empty churches, or writers reading their work among friends. Too many of us have willfully abused our crafts in the effort to find promoters who will then abuse us in a concerted amplification of noise. Relief from this hyper-artistry can be found in small writers' forums or musical soirees among survivors who persist against their illusions of failure. What is salvageable from the edges and depths of our lives is often considerable.
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