Monday, January 28, 2013


Drop whatever you're doing and listen up!

If you labor in any capacity in the creative arts, you owe it to yourself to watch this video. It's the one and only Neil Gaiman delivering the most inspiring commencement speech ever at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia last May.

In his first ever commencement address, the original and ridiculously talented author of the Sandman graphic novels, "Coraline," "Mirror Mask," "Stardust," "Neverwhere," and oh, so many other fabulous works explains it all for you: how to get and keep a job in the arts, how to keep your attitude fresh and your spirit adventurous, how to say 'no,' and why. Not to mention revealing the best piece of advice he never took.

Gaiman's sensible outlook and droll humor delight throughout, even as his strategies often surprise. Best of all, he shares the best possible Mantra for a life in the creative arts: "Make good art." Come what may, despite all obstacles, the solution to any challenges life throws in your path—"Make good art."

Seriously, the most inspirational 20 minutes you will ever spend. Watch it now!

(PS: Not that anyone asked me, but here's the one thing I would add to Gaiman's glorious litany of good advice, something I wish I'd done more often myself: don't wait around until someone gives you the slightest encouragement before you make your art. It might never happen. Do it because you have to. Do it right now.)

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