In Case No One Told You, It’s Okay to Be Weird.
Benjamin Sledge

I’ve just been watching “Anne with an ‘E’”, based on “Anne of Green Gables” on Netflix, and she is seriously imaginative and weird in a time when people were very conventional. It made me cry, because I remember this feeling of being different and rejected, both at home and school — partly for being mixed-race, but mainly I think because I was dreamy and said strange things. Stephen King is right — for years I think people saw my writing as self-indulgence or delusion and made patronising comments about it, but the moment I got published everything changed. Suddenly all the things that made me seem weird are signs that I’m creative. When asked for advice recently at a reading the only thing I could think of to say was, “Don’t give up. If you love writing — or any or creative pursuit — don’t give up, no matter what anyone tells you.” And that includes your own mind, because often those internal voices are actually external voices that we’ve internalised.

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