Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead. -- Gene Fowler

Monday, January 3, 2011

Carpe Annum!

Seth Godin wrote recently in his blog about the perils of waiting until everything's perfect to take risks and put yourself out there. I've written about this kind of thing myself. Waiting for the Muse doesn't work very well. It does work, but very slowly for many of us. You'll get better results if you go to your Muse and ask her to come round for a cup of tea or the like. Take her out for a walk. Do something different. And observe. Be there, in the moment, during whatever activity you choose. Notice things. Write them down if you like. Sketch them. Or just hold them in your memory until you get back to your creative space to commit them to your chosen form.

Your creative space doesn't have to be perfect either. As long as you have a space where you have room to comfortably work without distraction, you have what you need. Sure, we'd all like an extravagant art studio with all the finest supplies, or a spacious corner office with a glorious view and the most expensive furniture money can buy. But that doesn't make creativity happen. In fact, you might even feel stifled in such an environment. "I spent all this time and money to prepare this space... how can I justify that? I'll have to create a masterpiece/write the best-selling novel of the decade in a place like this!" Carve out a nice space where you can, even if it's mobile or temporary. And then call in the Muse for a little chat.

The most important thing is to seize the moment. The time is now. If you wait until you 'feel inspired', you'll probably be waiting a very long time. And in the meantime, others who've chosen to go ahead and create anyway will be ahead of you, building characters, discovering techniques, making mistakes that they'll learn from.

Don't wait. It's a brand new year, just waiting for you to reach out and grab it.

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