Often, when you look at history, at least through the lens that many of us have looked at history - high school and college courses - a lot of the color gets bled out of it. You're left with a time period that does not look as strange and irrational as the time you're actually living through.
The smart way to build a literary career is you create an identifiable product, then reliably produce that product so people know what they are going to get. That's the smart way to build a career, but not the fun way. Maybe you can think about being less successful and happier. That's an option, too.
I hear so many writers say - and these are writers that I trust completely - 'I just started hearing a voice', or, 'The characters came to life'. I am filled with loathing for my own characters when I hear that because they do nothing of the sort. Left to their own devices, they do nothing but drink coffee and complain about their lives.
If we see a sad rain, it doesn't mean the rain is sad, but it means we see it. That's an easily dismissible kind of projection. But what I'm struggling to say, is that we take that rain in through our own hearts and emotions and senses and skin, and all those filters have an impact.