Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Creativity: reading, thinking, and occasionally sunflowers are components of the process
This post is a definite example of that. I post every Wednesday pretty reliably (unless life interferes with unreasonable demands I must give in to). But I don't often come to the page with an idea ready to zoom from my finger tips.
Today I started by diddle daddling around reading my old posts, posts that landed in my mailbox, posts I came across on Twitter, and posts I know my friends have written recently.
Somewhere along my diddling about, I dropped in on a blog or two by other writers (Jane Friedman for one, on ironically "What should authors blog about?" Seemed rather apropos.)
Reading makes me ask questions. It also makes me stop and think, and thinking leads me to wandering and wondering, which can on occasion produce a thought worth writing about.
Of course, this approach does have its downfalls. I may be planning to write a post and I get curious about sunflowers and then think about My Antonia by Willa Cather. In the book was a long description of the sunflowers which often stretched far into the distance on hills and along road sides in that part of Nebraska. Thinking about this image, will remind me of a neighbor I had in Oregon who grew sunflowers along one side of her house. From across the street and several houses down, I could see those enormous orange/yellow bobbing heads. They stood in a long narrow line along the garage wall like tall garish soldiers.
We finally moved them to higher ground while rain ran down our necks, and the pooling water spilled over our low boot tops. Either they never quite recovered or the seeds were only distant cousins to the spritely blooms my neighbor had grown. We had a rather sickly crop of lean seeds to harvest.
That's the thing about creativity, it's like an unexpected rainy season when you're trying to grow sunflowers: one thing leads to another and you just have to go with the flow.
What flows have you had to ride along that guided you to a writing moment?