I always find it ironic that just when an artist begins to achieve some success, that it is just at that precise moment that his or her personal life always seems to implode. The husband, the wife, the ex suddenly become really needy. Just when the artists’ creativity begins to flow freely a huge personal crisis looms large and starts to try and fill that creative space. These needy people don’t want us showing up at the easel, the audition, the rehearsal, band practise or the page, because it makes us happy.
“The Artist’s Way” author Julia Cameron calls people like this crazy-makers because they keep our creative lives chaotic and unbalanced. Other people would call them narcissists. Instead of supporting the artist, they instead want the artist to support them. Cries for attention are so frequent that there is the impression that there is no room for anything else.
Crazy-makers and narcissists are two-year-olds in adult bodies.
I have been targeted by crazy-makers more than once over the past four decades of my career, all with varying degrees of craziness and chaos. The common thing about crazy-makers is that they think everything is always all about them. It’s always about their schedule, their requirements and their happiness. They want our full attention and will they will literally do anything to get it, even to the point of letting their own health and well-being decline so we will have to drop everything to take care of them.
Trust me, I’ve seen it all.
I have never not been an artist and I have never taken a hiatus from my work. Another trait of a crazy-maker is that they think that they can control and change someone. They don’t want us to be happy. They don’t want us to give our attention to anything and anyone else. Some of my crazy-makers believed that they could make me give up on my art.
The really crazy thing about crazy-makers is that they will tell everyone who will listen that they are supporting us in our careers. They will take credit for every good thing that happens to us. They will fake support us in public but give us a run for our money in private.
Why do artists pick crazy-makers?
I’m still trying to figure that one out myself.
They bring nothing of value to our lives.