fame

hard to find

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Much like good help, some well-known people are hard to find. Others—Bob Goff for example—have made themselves easy to reach (he put his cell phone number in the back of his book, for laughing out loud).

I’ve often considered which lifestyle is more appealing. 

There is something idyllic about living in a remote cabin far from society, only submitting your work through a complex chain of untraceable contacts, including a speckled northeastern carrier pigeon. But I imagine such a life could get lonely. And I hear carrier pigeons make foul company. 

Then again, being surrounded by a posse of watchful guards and raving fans all the time sounds overwhelming. I’ve heard, and believe, that some of the most famous people in the world are also the most lonely. 

After all, just because your famous doesn’t mean you have many close friends. Actually, I think fame often becomes a barrier to true friendship. Are they really your friends or do they just want to get something out of you? 

So, which is better for a creative? I think there is room for a bit of both.

It’s important to make time for the people who appreciate the creative work you make, even if you’ll never meet them in person. This could be a short email, a phonemail, or even a reply on social media. It shows people that you care that they care. 

Personally, I’ve reached out to a few successful creatives (artists and authors) and when I get a response, man, it really made my day.

But, even more important, there is a necessary time to get away from the crowd, to turn off all those notifications. Your work may belong to your fans, but you do not.  Besides that, your family should get special attention from you that no one else does.

It’s also important to maintain a few close friendships. This could, and even should be people who have no specific interest in your own creative pursuits. Such people help round you out and can be a support for you when other areas in life are a struggle.

No matter how well known you are or how successful your work is, we all need to be part of a community. We also need a place where we can find peace, quiet, and safety—an escape from masses. 

As Dorothy realized, there really is no place like home, even if that home happens to be in a bird sanctuary high in the Rocky Mountains.

fame

When I was a young lad I wanted to be famous. Heck, I pretty much assumed I would be. It only made sense, after all: it’s what everything seemed to be telling me I should want. And why shouldn’t I be? I’m just an amazing person after all and everyone loves me. Riiiight.

But I don’t want it no more. It works out well, since I am decidedly not famous by any stretch of the imagination. 

The more I think upon it, the less I want fame. After all, I like to go out in public and not get hounded by people I’ve never met before. I like not having my private life invaded by the media. Why, it’s safe to say I enjoy the luxuries of non-fame more every day.

However, as a writer, I do want to be well-read and well-received. I’d like my work to be known by as many people as possible, even if they never know who I am personally. I think it’s an achievable goal, to be well-read but only known by a few. 

While this doesn’t work for every artist, there are many creatives out there who are highly successful but only familiar to those with a particular knowledge of their industry, such as fashion designers, architects, chefs, and game designers. 

In my own, inexperienced opinion, I think those who are both successful in their artistic career and famous bear a heavier burden than the rest. In truth, I do not envy them.

Personally, I don’t get starstruck (not even thunderstruck), or at least haven’t yet. Sure, there are people I’d love to meet, people I admire for their opinions, character or work. Honestly, I will treat someone a little different if I know they are known by many, but I think that’s more out of a respect for their position in society than me fawning over them.

 

As someone who works in the entertainment industry and in LA, it’s no surprise I’ve met a few folks of notoriety. Come to think of it, I’ve had some very unusual experiences:

I made Bill Murray leave an In N Out. Alright, so it wasn’t me in particular, he just realized our group was onto him and decided to head elsewhere with his family. Can’t say I blame him.

I’ve played freeze tag with Andy Serkis (the guy who portrayed Gollum, King Kong, and a bunch of other well known mocapped movie creatures)

Stan Lee almost stole my jacket (accidentally of course).

Kim Kardashian had to wait in line behind me as I sampled yogurt at a Pinkberry. Hmm … that’s probably the most millennial thing I’ve ever said.

I totally ignored Morgan Freeman as he stood in front of me, tapping on my desk. This is the man who played God (multiple times), for crying out loud! No, I’m not indifferent, just oblivious. Sheesh, all I had to do was look up!

Samuel L. Jackson made me work late on a Call of Duty game.

Terry Crews and I had a brief, awkward exchange as we were both heading toward the bathroom at the same time. Naturally, I let him go first and just waited outside, I mean, have you seen what a specimen of a human being he is?

 

So yes, I think fame can be fun, as long as it’s someone else’s!

 

Creatively yours,

A. P. Lambert

 

Hey Creatives, what are your thoughts on fame and have you had any interesting encounters with a famous person? Let us know in the comments below.