There are people out there who are just brilliant. Their brains are amazing. Their art is gasp-inducing.
But they can’t seem to achieve their goals.
These are the people who know twenty-two languages, have maybe five masters degrees, and shrug it off like it’s no big deal.
They can quote Derrida and Angela Davis in the same breath and make the connections between the two.
According to writer/blogger Jessica Wildfire, some people are ‘too good for their own good.’
She calls this the Cold Mountain Effect.
Someone can know too much. They can be too talented. They’ll turn any project into an epic journey through the Himalayas. They don’t get tired of working. They don’t want to see the end. They’re not even perfectionists. They just love their work too much.
This stems from the story of the writer of Cold Mountain.
It made history in 1997 with a 61-week run on the New York Times best-seller list, moving 3 million copies.
Based on its success, Charles Frazier got an $8 million deal for his second book, with nothing more than a 1-page proposal. Cold Mountain swept the award scene that year, and went on to become a hit film that earned seven Academy Award nominations.
Sometimes it takes an intervention.
You probably don’t know that Frazier spent almost a decade working on Cold Mountain. According to lore, he couldn’t stop.
One of his friends finally snuck an unfinished copy of the manuscript to a literary agent, who signed Frazier on the spot. That’s the only reason anyone knows anything about Charles Frazier. It’s hard to imagine how long he would’ve kept revising it.
It’s not perfectionism that keeps them going, she argues, but the fear of their own success. Or it can just be the joy that they get from creating and doing and not wanting that joy to stop.
We don't have enough space to put the rest of the notes here, but you can check them out on carriejonesbooks.blog also so many apologies but Shaun gets a bit naughty in the podcast and Carrie gets a lot frustrated.
The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song? It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.