Six months ago, I published a prose piece, Leave Go on this blog (read the original at the end of this post). It marked a change of tone in my article writing, leaning more towards the poetic in style. Risky? Maybe. Yet the feedback suggested it touched people. Recently I felt stuck, uninspired. It occurred to me to take a gentle stroll through my past writing and I’m so glad I did.
A note on creativity: in case you think ‘creative output’ means art or poetry or prose. It doesn’t. Every time you bring something into form that didn’t previously exist, you create:
a meal, an Instagram post, a photo, an outfit you put together, a sketch, a song you sing, a spreadsheet you populate, a piece of code you write, a hairstyle you create, a picture you frame, a sand castle you build, a fire you lay, a flower bed you dig over, If it doesn’t ‘feel creative’ that is just the thought you’ve overlaid on to the act.
What might you re-visit?
Behind the scenes of this creative process
Here are 18, whimsical and practical, things I discovered on reviewing LEAVE GO:-
- The experience of reading the piece I wrote was a pleasant surprise. If you feel stuck or discouraged, remind yourself of past creative output. If it isn’t still in form (a cake, flower arrangement or beach art), perhaps look at photos, notes, sketches, or plans you made about the creation.
- It seemed incredible that the same ‘I’ created this piece of work because this ‘I’ wasn’t ‘feeling’ particularly creative. A great reminder of how unreliable, illusory and changeable any concept of I, me, my capacity, talents, creativity etc actually is. I.e. best disregarded as often as you can.
- Reading this piece took me straight back to the feeling I was in when I created it (and that was revitalising).
- Something created, captured and shared, is re-animated, every time someone looks at it, listens to it, watches it, shares it (and that includes you the creator of it). Why not relish what you spent time creating in the past.
- A fresh idea occurred to perform the poem (spoken word poetry) and record it (something I am just beginning to explore) and make a little video. INSPIRATION comes from contemplating the wonder and mystery of creation (ours, others’ and the natural world)
CREATIVE ACTION & LEARNING
- Acting on that inspiration led to action which was absorbing and enjoyable (my mood lifted without me actively trying to shift it) LEAVING OUR RUMINATING ALONE AS BEST WE CAN
- I found out some new functions on a free video app called SPLICE for smartphones (LEARNING)
- I had FUN!
- Out of that activity came a fresh new creation. First a written poem, now a performance piece. NOTICING CREATIVITY
- The possibility for many different creative spin offs to create other version of this work suddenly seems endlessly possible and fun. IF IT’S DIFFERENT, IT’S A NEW CREATION
- The joy of paying close attention to different aspects: each word, line length, layout of the poem, font. Then thinking about the performance: speed of delivery, loudness, variation of tone and speed, pitch, adding music or not, what kind? Images that could be filmed to go with the work. NOTICING THE TAP IS ON
SHARING (HELPING/TOUCHING OTHERS)
- By publishing it on Vimeo and Facebook, it gets the creation out of the ‘safe’ space of your studio, notebook or tablet and sets it free. CREATIONS ARE HAPPENING BY THEIR MILLIONS EVERY DAY, UNLIMITED SPACE AVAILABLE
- It changes form as soon as others hear/read/see/taste it and so it gets newly created each time it is heard CREATION IS DYNAMIC AND RE-CREATED AT EVERY MOMENT
- It has attracted fresh interest even though it was previously shared as a poem to many of the same audience. Note to self: Don’t be afraid to RE-PUBLISH/RE-POST, it gives more people the opportunity to connect with what you have created. LOOK CLOSELY, IT’S NOT THE SAME FOR THOSE WHO EXPERIENCE IT
- Heartfelt responses point you towards and encourage you to continue creating what helps people. This feedback gives you helpful pointers. FEEDBACK IS A GIFT
- Helpful guides can appear. A film-maker and fellow writer have offered really helpful feedback and tips on how to improve and how to spread the work more widely. GUIDANCE AND SUPPORT COME FROM UNEXPECTED PLACES
- Specific feedback, in this case on hearing the work rather than just reading it, encourages me to further explore e.g. spoken word performance. FEEDBACK IS A CHANCE TO LEARN
I’d love to hear what landed for you in this post and topics you’d like to explore further. Please add your comments.
And here is the creation: LEAVE GO © Juliet Fay 2018 written, performed and recorded by Juliet Fay with photo by Juliet Fay
For there, just out of sight, is a space where we don’t need to hold things so tightly.
Where there is nowhere to fall but into grace.
Where stories of self and others flutter like Autumn leaves, falling, falling to gently decompose as winter turns to Spring and emerge, transformed.
New shoots from the cold hard earth.
And in this ebb and flow of birth and death, of joy and sorrow, we hear another drum beat.
The deep longing expressing itself in sighs and belly laughs.
The longing to turn away from poring over the flotsam and jetsam on the shores of our awareness.
To wade out beyond our depth and dive into the ocean, down, down to the unexplored territory far below the pull of neap and spring tides.
And as we fall into that deep rest, life rises up, greets us and washes us back upon the shore.
To once again sigh and laugh
Rise and fall
Leave go and let this making and unmaking of Life unfold.
© Juliet Fay 2017© Juliet Fay 2017
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