Monday, August 12, 2013

Creative thoughts and wonderings

What is it about creative ventures that make people nervous and that makes people question your sanity? I get that creative ventures are usually poorly defined, or so it seems to anyone who’s not closely involved in it anyway, and that you’re taking a pretty big risk betting your “all” on creativity. Is it a case of most people not trusting their own creativity enough so that when they see someone else suddenly betting it “all” on a creative venture it just scares the holy bejeezus out of them?

I recall, not so fondly, declaring some time in my youth that I was going to publish a book someday. First question was, of course, “what kind of book?” I didn’t know and I didn’t care but apparently when you open your mouth even as a fledgling teen and say something like that you already have to have the plan and the roadmap and the recipe ready or people are not going to be backing you dreams. At that early stage you can hardly call it a plan; it’s really more of a dream.

And, that’s the key element to me. Dreaming. If you as a fledgling teen, or at any stage in your life, want to dream of and believe that you one day will have a book published why can’t you? Everybody knows that dreams change and maybe, just maybe, that sort of dream will at least motivate you to learn your grammar properly, and to read lots of books. Looks like we’re winning already but that’s just me.

Why is it that we feel such a need to bring “reality” in to it when we’re not really even qualified to determine what the reality is? Sure, it’s not easy to get a book published, it’s not easy to write a best seller, but it’s happened. It happened to JK Rowling, and it happened to her in a big way.

I had no intention of writing something as epic as Harry Potter, and with epic I mean popularity and sales, I kept my dream small and I just wanted to have a book published one day. It’s a bit like when I opened my mouth and said I wanted to study psychology, and was told that apparently one can’t make a decent living doing that. Fucking Dr Phil. Even if I could never become Dr Phil, I will never be bald enough or be able to grow a moustach like his, I would at least be able to cash in on what he’s done to make psychology more mainstream and acceptable.

There’s that whole keeping people, especially young people, safe and saving them from their own dreams that sometimes drives me potty. It leaves your head ringing with ‘Don’t do that!” for decades and stops your dream factory in mid production and leaves you with a mediocre, out of the box life at best. It makes you settle when you want to shine and it makes you chase things that you “should have” like marriage, a career and life in suburbia.

I decided years ago that I won the argument and that I did indeed publish that book I wanted to publish. I’d done it. Big tick in that box. The fact that it wasn’t the literary master piece I’d secretly hoped for is another story but it's hardly the point. I never said it was going to be. Besides, my book has been published all over the world, globally, internationally and in a sort of universal way. It’s all over the place. Like I said, it’s not the kind of book I imagined but somewhere, out there, beneath the sunny skies of wherever, a technician is consulting a service manual I authored and illustrated.

I’m just saying. Mum. Dad. Bro. I’m just saying.

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