The payoff

If I think about how some project or effort of mine affects the world, it’s hard to imagine the effects that I would never know about. A tree falls in the woods; if no one hears it, does it make a sound? Does it make a sound a microphone would pick up? Yes, of course. Does it make a sound that affects someone? No, of course not. The answer depends on what we mean when we ask the question. If I do something creative, and no one that I know of benefits from it, does it matter?

Why? Because anyone who has ever done anything worth a damn, knows that they probably weren’t the main beneficiaries of their efforts. Our work may have lit up the world, but we still remain down in the mud, somehow.

~ Cierra Martin from,


For some reason, I liked the overall shape of that little article. But I don’t like the imagery of “we still remain down in the mud.” I feel like the thankless creative work that I do, doesn’t leave me “down in the mud.” A better metaphor—the way I think of it—is that I’m “still in the workshop.” I’m in the workshop. I’m being creative. My work has affects (I presume), but the fact that I don’t see those affects doesn’t make them any less real.