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Fight for your art. If you write, act, direct, paint, sculpt, design or build, you must champion your work. For there will always be critics – there will always be rejections, too frequent to count and too many to remember – in which doubt can consume you, while the temptation to surrender – the decision to give in by giving up – threatens to steal your soul. I know that feeling, as does every artist, from the architect whose purity of concept meets demands for crass additions and gross modifications to the photographer whose portfolio no gallery owner will sell or showcase, from the author whose manuscript – with its poetic prose and prophetic ending – no editor will publish to the singer whose songs no executive will record, from the student whose achievements no Ivy League college will review to the filmmaker whose movie no studio will approve or finance. In short, you must never sacrifice the integrity of your work – but you should almost never turn down the chance to work. You can be romantic and practical, too, because there is dignity in work. It pays the bills, and keeps the dream alive. Look no further than Orson Welles. A man of tremendous talent, and unmistakable size and stature – with his booming baritone and godly voice, in addition to his ever-present cloud of cigar smoke – he speaks to us across the veil of years. A raconteur since childhood, and a hustler by circumstance, he would never say no to work because he would never compromise his work. The work was – and remains – an indelible part of his work. Keep striving. Keep doing. Keep working.