Never Meet Your Heroes. : ThyBlackMan

Wednesday, July 17, 2019


Never Meet Your Heroes.

July 10, 2019 by  
Filed under News, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThyBlackMan.com) We have times where we’d just love to meet our inspirations, our influences, our heroes. It’s a great goal to have on paper but sometimes those heroes will disappoint you. Actually, most of the time they will disappoint you.

See, some people have an idea of how that person is outside of a setting where they became familiar with their work. The thing is, their work is a reflection of their creativity, skill, talent, and work ethic. It’s not a reflection of them entirely. In some cases, it will be and in others—let’s just say you’ll be putting yourself on a crash course with disappointment.

My Run In With A Hero

I’ve been bouncing between starting two fiction series and there are a number of writers I consider my inspirations. I had the opportunity to run into one when I found out they would be at an event. I was heading over to talk with them when I noticed how they handled the few people who stopped by to talk with them.

On one hand, it could’ve been a long day for them with traveling, hotel stuff, and setting up their booth. Putting in that much effort for a little turn out is bound to make anyone agitated. On the other hand, these were folks who stopped by to talk with you about your work and they seemed really enthusiastic about it from what I observed.

When I finally got to chat with them for a few minutes, it was about the creation and writing process. As it turned out, it wasn’t a bad talk at all but it could’ve easily gone that way if I had walked up to talk earlier or wanted to ask about what they write. Luckily, I was familiar with their work.

Regardless of my talk with them, how dismissive they were of people stopping by bothered me. It was like seeing one person and experiencing another. It’s something that we all run into and something that we sometimes do ourselves depending on who we’re with and the setting: at work, at play, in public, in private—often we navigate settings differently.

How To Avoid That Disappointment

I will say, it didn’t diminish my appreciation of them as a writer or my love of their series. In this century, it’s necessary to separate the person from their work even if the person puts themselves in their work.

There’s a saying that comedians are some of the meanest, depressing people you’ll ever meet when they’re off stage. You might be wondering where this saying came from. Comedians themselves. The best indication of how your hero is outside of their field is to see what others say about them. Not only that but keep an open mind when searching.

Don’t get in your feelings like “How can they say that about this person! They’re a good person who looks out for people.” These people run in close proximity to your hero if not in the exact same circles. They would know your hero better than you. I’d also say weigh the opinions of people who have met them outside of their work as well but aren’t peers or contemporaries.

Also, not all heroes are going to be people who rub you the wrong way at the minimum and horrible folks at worst. Some heroes are just as genuine as you believe and as they present themselves. However, sometimes it’s best to go in cautiously and not with idea that you’re going to graced with a life altering experience in meeting them.

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.


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