If you want a life with less pain, do what works. There are plenty of avenues to make yourself useful. Having success in art is incredibly rare. You need talent, you probably need to be attractive, you’ve got to work hard, you’ve got to get lucky. You need to have courage, you need to have patience. Delusion will sustain you through the worst of it – but, at some point in time – you will need to come to realize that your truest need is to connect. This desire came from trauma – to be like the illusion, because the truth hurts. Neglect, abuse – and you’re throwing yourself into a place where people WANT to doubt you. In spite of obvious talent, they pick on the parts of you that are failing. That is human nature – weak harming weak. The healthy will abandon you. Your search is not healthy. Be good – your goodness is the grounding you need in recovery. Because at some point in time – after all you’ve sacrificed, you need to just be appreciative of what you have left. A simple life. Reading books, talking to people. Having a job where you’re helpful. If you’re reaching for the stars you will still need to be content with the fact that you’re human and undoubtably earthbound. If your game is built entirely on conceit the inevitable fall will be unsustainable. Your looks will fade. Your next record will bomb. You must come to see that accolades of individual achievement are impossible without community. You are facing overwhelming odds – don’t expect sympathy when you’re trying to excel. The work is the statement at the end of your life. Be OK with it ending up in the landfill. Critics are trash looking to cash in. At least you make things.