Art First

By Mark Antony Rossi

I’ve been tasked twice this year with material from writers who had to overcome painful circumstances. These situations put to test my philosophy of being a tougher editor than person. There needs to be a dramatic difference lest you permit well meaning scribes to emote feelings more than immerse yourself in creative figments and fragments.
 It’s not an easy task to inform a traumatized writer that writing must put art first. It sounds clinical. It sounds cold. And while I am a proponent as writing as Therapy there must be a firm understanding that such therapeutic practices are not meant to produce work for the public.
 Art is first. Anything less is a disservice to the audience. It’s actually disrespectful to Art. Writers can use pain and grief to propel their creative engines if they are in the condition to filter the material or allow another with a clearer set of eyes.
 Even the so-called confessional genre relies on as much dispassion as doggone gravel. Because this is what Art demands a human snapshot frozen in moments. Real enough to relate. But not so real as to survive scrutiny. We live in a complicated age where claims of victimization are merely vehicles for safe communication.
 Let us lend some clarity with well crafted writing born to bring people closer together or perhaps closer to their real identity. Artists have the ability to unlock the places too many bolt shut for fear of ridicule. Art is an audible signpost attempting to reach the blind and the blemished. Both crowds who have no business being in the dark if they only open their damned eyes.
 Be their light.
About the Author: Mark Antony Rossi is a poet, playwright and author of the bioethics volume “Dark Tech” now available from Amazon. His most recent plays have been produced in Liverpool and New York.

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