Michael, My Brother…

Mike isn’t actually my brother. Not by blood he isn’t. Nor by any type of gang affiliation.

Mike is a brother to. me, a man who also experiences what it’s like to be a human being. That’s how Mike is a brother to me. We both are living life, moment by moment, one day at a time.

Mike used to say, “our crazy matches”. He meant we were both the same kind of crazy. I used to believe this was an advantage, that our friendship was destined to be epic and amazing.

Here’s the thing, about my crazy. I’ve got a personality disorder. Depends on the day, what mood I’m in. I can wear different personalities. Not as cool as you might think it is.

The problem with this, and, if Mike also has some sort of personality disorder, is that we aren’t consistent in who we are as an individual. Yes, we have things in common, our course we do- if we hadn’t we probably never would’ve tried to be buddies involved in each others lives.

I wish Mike the best, I really do. I don’t hate Mike, this particular Mike- in fact I hope his wildest dreams come true.

But, Mike and I as writer friends, has never amounted to much. That’s no knock on Mike or myself. In my opinion, it just wasn’t a good fit, us as writers, being friends because we are writers.

It makes me sad. I know he wants to be a successful writer. I hope that he becomes that writer. But as it stands now, neither myself nor Mike will succeed, because simply put, we have little to no work to send out to publishers, in hopes of being published by a publishing house, Independent or mainstream.

You see, Mike refused to be a part of social media. Maybe he has a Facebook. If he does, he’s on there to be friends with co-workers and family members. He’s not on Facebook to connect with other writers and readers.

I tried many times explaining to Mike that without being on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, the odds of succeeding dwindle an extreme amount. On all these platforms, an author can promote, connect with other writers and readers- even know when publishers are accepting submissions to be considered for publication. How on God’s green Earth do you suppose Mike would find all of this, without social media? Odds are he won’t be in the loop at all.

Mike never mentioned any forward progress on publishing, outside of non-fiction essays he wrote and might on occasion still write for a local community editorial. As Mike told me, Mike isn’t a non-fiction writer. At least he’s not trying to become a success from his non-fiction, he wants to succeed as a fiction writer.

Again- without writing fiction stories, success will never have a chance to happen. Without writing fiction, the individual will never succeed as a fiction writer.

Like I said earlier, I hope Mike succeeds. I hope the writing bug bites him and refuses to let go. Meaning, I hope Mike starts writing fiction daily. I hope he sends out manuscripts to agents and publishers. I hope that for his own sake, because I know he gives a damn about it.

The thing that happens with Mike, every time, is that Mike becomes Michael the Father. He’s a father to his son and his daughter. Which, I’ve always respected. From what I can tell about Mike, he cares most about being a father to his children. He cares most about being actively involved in their lives so as to teach and guide them, help them to succeed. To avoid pitfalls he fell into, so as they can avoid the unnecessary pain through his wisdom of experience. I think that’s grand. I really do. I respect Mike for this, and admire his unfailing efforts to continue to be a role model to his children.

However, I’ve never wanted to be a father, not since I was a child who couldn’t fathom the responsibilities of being a parent. So while I respect Mike the Father, this personality that ends up being who Mike is in the current tense, is not a friend to me. This isn’t to say Mike the Father is a foe- he’s just unimportant to me and who I am. I cannot relate to Mike the Father, as I am not a father myself. Quite frankly, I don’t give a fuck about Mike the Father. I could care less about his children- because, they sure as hell aren’t my responsibility.

In fact, all I can say is, “good luck Mike, not my problem”.

When I believed Mike and I share the common goal of succeeding as a writer, becoming a full-time writer, a professional writer, we had the most important thing in common.

Now I realize that’s truly on the back-burner for Mike. He’s too busy to be a professional writer. Even with the little free time he’s granted, Mike is unwilling to utilize his free time to write fiction, or non-fiction. I get the feeling Mike would rather watch tv, or just mentally zone out for a bit. Which is fine, there’s no judgment from me regarding what Mike chooses to do in his free time.

But it’s obvious Mike isn’t too focused on becoming a professional author. Maybe he will be ten, fifteen years from now, but it’ll be too late for our fellowship at that point.

The timing is off. I’ve got all the time in the world to write, and often most days I do write more than a few paragraphs.

My advice to myself is keep writing.

Because Mike sure ain’t writing. Have fun being a parent Mike. Seems like the payoff hasn’t arrived yet. Oh well. You choose to make that your everything, and again- best of luck buddy. That’s more than I can chew, being a parent. Never will I be a father to a child, son or daughter. I’m too busy writing, because what I want most in this life is to be an author who finally breaks on through to the other-side. I want the most to have readers who are fans, an actual readership of my work.

So, without further ado, I now go to work on fiction. Which means I’m about to write some fiction that only I can write.

Booyeah, to Mike and everyone else reading this.

Keep writing, Philip. Keep writing.

Philip Webb

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