I’m not sure where creativity comes from. And honestly, I can’t define it either. I can’t draw you a picture or show you a photograph. But even so, I’ve discovered recently that creativity actually exists as a concrete, substanitive thing. A thing with proportions and weight and mass. I know this because for a while I had it, and I felt it — and then I ran out.
And this isn’t the first time.
It makes me think of that cliche — “the well of creativity.” And cliche’s are rooted in some truth which is why I’m pretty sure I’m not completely insane when I say I have a Well of Creativity inside myself. This is a really cool thing. Until I discovered one thing.
It ain’t deep.
For the past six weeks, I’ve been working on revisions for my second book, Audition and Subtraction. I dove head first into the story and worked it over and over. By the end, I was running on fumes. Thankfully, the revisions went to my editor last Tuesday.
And this is the first thing I’ve written since. It’s been 9 days. Today is the first day I’ve even WANTED to think about writing. (And it’s only a short blog!) The first time this happened to me, I panicked. Had I lost it completely? Would I ever write again? But I’ve come to know myself and my Well. Yes, it bottoms out and when it does, the idea of writing is painful. So I’ve learned to wait and give the well time to refill.
Because it does.
I’m sitting here thinking about all of this, because the first twinges are beginning again and I know that in a few more days or maybe another week or two, I’ll be itching to start again. In the meantime, I’ve been renewing and refilling. Which is code for “Doing Absolutely Nothing.”
And that’s the best thing I can do right now.
How about you? Do you have a Well–do you know how it works? How best can you draw upon it? Slow and steady, a little each day? Or a frenzied outpouring of creativity for a certain amount of time followed by a refill? I thought I was a slow and steady but I’m not. I’m more in the frenzied camp.
Which is why you haven’t heard from me in a while. But the Well is filling again– I hope yours is, too.