That elusive lump of gold we call creativity


Before I started this blog I drew up a plan of how I saw it forming and what I wanted to write about. After around one week I threw that out. But one of the first things on that plan was the aim to try and post once a week. Little did I appreciate at the time just how tricky coming up with one solitary new idea each week would be.

This past week has been and gone and I have been completely stumped. That has been the theme for all my writing this last week. Stumped. I’ll take you back to Friday a week ago. After a thrilling and exhilarating critique session a month ago I had big plans for several particularly dull chapters. I’ve slowly been working through them and while I wasn’t thrilled it was an improvement. Then at the hairdressers as I was handed a coffee I had one of those rare eureka moments. I had not only a plan, but a vision. There would be a weekend to get out of the way before I could actually write this scene but I made copious notes and held on to the vision.

When I finally got to it, it was okay, I think the word I’m looking for is ‘meh’. I could see this vision, this lump of gold, this nugget or kernal. It was sitting just outside a window that was slightly ajar. If I stretched I could get my hand through the crack but the wrench in my shoulder was eye wateringly painful and the thought crossed my mind that if I did get my hand through the gap in the window, the wind would slam it on to my hand chopping my fingers off. This is not the first time that nugget of creative genius has been just beyond an open window, sometimes it is around a corner and I can’t even see it but at least that window is ajar. Sometimes the window is a solid wall of marble. It is insanely frustrating.

This brings me to my sister, Soozle Alana Princess Banana. A very talented, wise and creative person. Early on in this new writing journey she gave me some incredible gems on creativity, and the creative process. These are the gems I turn to when the window is too hard or too scary to try and reach through.

‘You need to write every day. I really believe in the importance of this discipline in any creative practice, it can’t be underestimated, the gold is often in making yourself do it when you least want to.’

She also compared that nagging voice that reminds you washing needs folding, dishes need to be done, meals need to be cooked and food brought in to the house to cook with, as that of a naughty toddler.

‘Ignore that voice. The more you pay her attention, the more she’ll lead you astray. She’s like a naughty child that shouldn’t be indulged!.

So, now jobs are done, dry-cleaning has been collected, food is in the fridge for dinner and the dog has been wormed I am looking at the window and I see it is ajar.  I can see a glimmer from that nugget just around the corner suggesting it could be within my reach soon and I realise the wind has dropped away so the window won’t be slammed against my hand. If I just stretch a little further I may finally reach it.

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