Friday, October 1, 2010

breaking my commitment

Over the last several months, I've tried to be really good at keeping my commitment to write every Writing Friday, the day that writer friends come to spend the day writing and talking about writing. I didn' thave Writing Friday last week because I was in San Diego speaking at a conference and selling my memoir.

Unfortunately  for my schedule, I took off all four days of the trip rather than doing some work projects while I was there. I had a great mini-vacation but I came back to a slam load of editing work in my paid profession. I worked as hard as I could this week, but rush projects kept coming in and I kept saying yes and this morning I found myself really conflicted. Did I write at Writing Friday or did I move three other paid projects along so I wouldn't have to work all weekend and have a hellatious next week to boot?

I opted to reduce the stress by working today. But I also had to wonder about a secondary motivation. Sometimes I am reluctant to sit down to Writing Friday if I don't quite know where the story is going although almost always something appears if I get to it. And that wasn't the problem today as I know what comes next in the book.

However, I don't know what comes after that. My two parallel stories are about to merge and I am currently clueless as to the rest of the plot. Maybe I didn't want to sit deep in not knowing all this next week. As it is now, I still have that already thought-up chapter to work on next Friday. Ah, the games we play with ourselves.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

My creativity change list

Since last month's writing group meeting when I started thinking about changing my apartment to support more of my creative endeavors, I've been making a list of possible changes to consider. I decided to share them here. I'd love to hear what ideas you come up with for yourself.

1. Get some decent lighting for my dining room table so I have an additional creative work surface in the evenings.
2. Use the lower right two shelvs of my living room bookcase (hidden by the sofa from viw) for creative supplies.
3. Keep my card table cleared off and have a small project always set up to work on.
4. Find cupboard space for the old bath mats I use for my ancient cat.
5. Move the extra copies of my memoir to the basement and out of the office.
6. Make much better use of my office storage space.
7. Follow Tamara's idea about narrowing my interests and the related craft supplies.
8. Consolidate my pastel chalks into the beautiful box I got for Christmas last year.
9. Assemble the drawing horse I got for Christmas last year.
10. Get rid of most all of the miscellaneous craft stuff (that which is not related to my priority interests).
11. Keep only the best quality craft supplies.
12. Measure the dozen old poster frames in the basement and get paper cut to go in them or collage on what's in there already.
13. Go thru the upper closet in the office and rethink what goes in there.
14. Get rid of all my old collage images (they are too familiar and stale OR go through the images and reduce by 75%, keeping only the best and resolve to use them immediately.
15. Ask my friend Mary if I can raid her collage files.
16. Seriously reduce my collection of recycled gift wrap.
17. Make all creative supplies accessible.
18. Create an inventory of creative supplies so I don't buy duplicates on a whim.
19. Do a big give-away of craft stuff I don't need.
20. Clean up the cords in the office.
21. Reduce table top clutter by giving away half my doodads.
22. Get rid of someday clutter in the office drawers.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Artist's Date

 Julia Cameron encourages writers and other creatives to do regular artist's dates, where you fill the well of creativity. My current trip to San Diego has been one huge artist's date.

The landscape is so different from home. The sky is deeply blue, the sun clear, the breeze warm. Out my hotel room window are huge (4  story) palm trees, one just unfurling a new frond right out my window. It's amazing to be at the height of the tops of these magnificent trees.
The air feels different, a bit of the desert, a bit of the ocean. I can see why people want to live here although I would find the climate monotonous, as I am used to and in love with having four seasons.

Friday I had a chance to go to Coronado Island and visit the Del Coronado, a hotel built in 1897. It's apparently the largest wooden structure in America and while it's more ornate than my taste, it was amazing to visit. We also got a chance to go to the beach for an hour. Then we went to Balboa Park, a beautiful hill top of grounds and palm trees and Spanish architecture.

We spent an hour at the San Diego Art Museum. I had wanted to see the Toulouse Lautrec exhibit and there were several new images there that I had never seen before even in reproduction. Even more wonderful was the permanent collection of 19th and 20th century work. American impressionists and post-impressionists as well as Europeans. There was also work by Robert Henri. I have a book of his ideas on art, which I'm fond of, but had never seen his work. I loved it and got some ideas for my own painting.

My well feels wonderfully filled.