I used to find it laughable.
The pretentious “from the desk of” prelap that used to dot the sales letters of old school copywriters or people of self-anointed authority.
The writer’s equivalent of a red corvette.
An overcompensatory, “look at me, I’m big sh*t” battlecry, that in perfect obedience to the law of parallelism, nearly always preceded a flaming piece of word-turd.
That was then.
This is now.
I’ve since reversed my position.
Even gone as far as to add it as the temporary header on EVERYTHING I write.
Because it should mean something.
Pride and ownership aren’t hallmarks of the overcompensating dickhead.
But of the writer willing to step up and say…
“Hells yeah, I wrote that”
What does it take to earn your own stamp of approval?
For some it’s meticulous spelling and grammar.
For others, it’s a quota of perfectly-timed 1980’s hip-hop reference:
For me, it’s a combination of:
- Proverbial Blood
- Proverbial Sweat.
- Proverbial Tears.
it’s gotta hurt…
At least a bit.
Push a boundary, pinch a nerve, and give me a moment of pause before hitting “send”.
So what does it mean to be “From the Desk of Ry Schwartz”…
Never be boring.
Never be benign.
Never waste an opportunity to catalyze change in the reader — to be a word-weaving midwife to the transformational leap or insight waiting for them.
But most importantly…
Never act like I have unlimited opportunities to do it.
Every time I write something, i confront my own mortality.
I treat it with the same sacredness I would a death note or a message in the bottle.
Try it. Seriously.
For even the most stoic caricature of 1950’s Americana…
Faced with death is where we have EVERYTHING to say – it’s a fearless and free state, void of consequence – void of the fear of the facebook troll who’s still in bed, dreaming his shitty, trolly dreams.
Hemingway once said that all you gotta do is cut yourself.
The bleeding part? That’s easy. It doesn’t need your interference.
It relies on anatomical and gravitational principals to fill the page.
Sure, I’ll miss the mark. I’ll err.
But I won’t fail to bleed.
Sometimes I’ll bleed in Type 0 negative, and connect with all readers with universal truths.
Other times, I’ll whip out the casket of AB negative and connect with 1 in a million on a hyper-niche idea or topic.
But I’ll show up. I’ll bloodlet.
And I’ll earn myself that stamp of approval I once so loathed.