Matthew Specktor on talent

“My mother was a failure, if that’s how you care to view it. Even when she’d manage to commit a significant amount of her time to a practice over the years—modeling, acting, painting, fiction, writing, screenwriting, ballet, and now, classical piano—she’d shown a tendency to walk away before any real reckoning of her talent could take place. That didn’t make her untalented; it simply meant she was afraid to be judged. Many people feel this way, and there is a sense in which the only meaningful metric for “success” is not recognition, or publication, or congratulation; it is perseverance. Talent is merely an invitation to work.”

— Matthew Specktor