Grrr. Grrr, I say! Has this ever happened to you? You formulate an idea, you start to work on it. Everything seems to be falling in place. This is going to work. Then, the idea you had appears on the platform you aimed to present it on. Today, that happened to me.
So there I was, hunting a shower loofa minding my own business. The magazine rack was hanging about at the end of the aisle, being its usual obnoxious self. Nerdy old me decided to look and if there were any new history mags. A masked man was staring back at me. Please don’t have a righteous mustache, I thought. I lifted the sweet-smelling, slick periodical revealing that splendiferous mustache. The article teaser next to it sends me into the five stages of grief, starting with anger. Damn, double damn.
It is not the first time. I’ve had ideas and seen them materialize into the creative separate from me. It happens to all creative types, I assume. It’s why we push to create and put our work out there. I guarantee you every vanguard idea had someone working on the same thing. They just didn’t get it out fast enough. It’s why you see four volcano disaster movies come out in the same year.
It tells me a few things, work faster. I know researching history is a process to be rushed, and archives in other states aren’t going to rush you materials. But damn, double damn. I’m getting a feel for what the mag and its editor(s) are looking for. Finally, keep writing, someday you get where you are headed. You just need to keep moving forward.
What do I do with all the material and research? I don’t know, but for now, it is onto the next. What is the appropriate reaction to seeing someone else beat you to the punch?