An Open Letter To Julien Solomita (and anyone else feeling creatively frustrated)

Dear Julien,

To get the fangirling out of the way, I would like to first tell you that I’ve been religiously watching your vlogs and listen to your and Jenna’s podcast for the better part of my undergraduate career. You’ve saved my sanity when I was stressing over exams and projects, and when I needed to drown out the quiet at my office jobs. I’ve seen your passion evolve with your technique, I watched you hit the 1 million subscriber count, and I quietly cheered you on from behind my computer screen with every accomplishment you made.

Over the past few years, I’ve started to notice that you and I have quite a bit in common – which is probably a strange thing to hear from a complete stranger, but hear me out. Other than the fact that we’re roughly the same age, went through college at the same time, and live on the same end of California, I relate so much to your creativity and thirst for wanting to dig deeper to discover what else you’re capable of. This common ground became even more clear when I watched your latest video (multiple times).

A cool thing I realized recently was that I have been posting on this blog for about as long as you’ve been posting videos on YouTube. One of my favorite things that you mentioned in your latest video was the amount of growth that took place since you uploaded your first vlog. Occasionally, as self-absorbent as this may sound, I also like to go back and read some of my first blog posts not only to see what I was going through at that particular moment in time, but also to see how much I’ve grown through what I learned coming out of those experiences.

When I first started this blog, I was excited to see what would come of it, having an outlet to document my thoughts as they came and to be able to do the very thing I just mentioned – looking back and seeing how far I’ve come. I wanted so badly to make it a point to post somewhat regularly. I started – and quietly ended – a revolving door of tried and failed series. Whenever something happened in the world of pop culture, I *needed* to blog about it and put my thoughts out on the internet. I took suggestions from my close circle when I came up empty on blog post ideas. I made sure to post something at least once a week, even if I had to force myself to write something half-assed. But after awhile, I reached a point that every creative reaches – I became exhausted and uninspired.

I realized that it’s okay to take a break from this blog every now and again (especially since I was still in school during the height of all of this). I realized that the problem with trying to post so often is that you begin to become creatively frustrated, and nothing you try to post feels right because it doesn’t align with your integrity. My drafts folder became flooded with half-written blog posts that I felt fire for at one point, but decided not to finish because of this reason or that. I look through those drafts and realized that none of the stuff I tried talking about in those posts really mattered to me. And through all of this, I ultimately found my niche and my voice, and I can confidently say that I’ve reached a point in my blogging semi-career that I’m very comfortable in. I may still have a modest number of subscribers, and sometimes go weeks without posting anything, but through this creative journey, I reached a point where I realized that I only want to post for myself and for the sole purpose of enlivening my voice and originality.

Please believe me when I say that none of this is at all a jab at you and your creativity. As a matter of fact, I find your growth in your ingenuity so incredibly inspiring, and I admire you and your work ethic – undoubtedly strengthened by following and putting yourself on a posting schedule. I mentioned being inspired by you and your accomplishments early in this post. While I am thoroughly impressed with every milestone you reach, award you win, and film festival you’re featured in, the bigger accomplishments, in my opinion, lie in your growth as a creative. I just want to let you know, from one creator/artist/whatever-you-want-to-call-us to another (though our audiences are vastly different both in size and overall demographic), that it’s okay to hit these slumps every now and again. All of us in the Dink Fam are proud of you and your accomplishments, but we also care about you and your sanity. Truthfully, hitting these bumps in creativity and inspiration only means that you’re growing in the right direction, and that a breakthrough is in the horizon.

Thank you so much for your honesty in your latest vlog, and for putting into words so accurately and eloquently what I wasn’t able to (being “inspired but uninspired at the same time” is my new favorite phrase). Thank you for making videos and sharing your creativity with the universe. Thank you for inspiring creativity and positivity in your viewers, myself included.

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