Romance and Reality

Maybe if I take a little nap then inspiration will strike...

Maybe if I take a little nap then inspiration will strike…

It is finally happening. I am finally reaching the point at which I no longer have enough other things to do to prevent me from actually getting around to some of those other goals on my list. Goals like writing. Goals like artwork. The goals that are difficult to quantify and easy to put off in favor of other tasks that are easier to complete.

Ever since the semester ended I have had a lot of big ambitions for things that I hope to get done this summer. I have this vision of doing a drawing every day. I have this vision of ending the summer with multiple scripts down on paper and ready to be heartily critiqued by my classmates. I have this vision of watching a lot of movies and reading a lot of books and maybe even relaxing a little bit in between.

So far, all I’ve succeeded in doing is napping.

To be fair, I’ve also given up caffeine (And also beer. And also Facebook) for ten days and napping is my coping mechanism. I also recognize that it is a form of procrastination.

Why should I be so reluctant to do things that I enjoy? I do enjoy writing. I do enjoy artwork. I do enjoy reading and watching movies. Yet I always put them at the end of my list. I suspect that it has something to do with the fact that creative pursuits like writing and artwork are much more romantic to think about doing than the reality of actually sitting down to to them.

In my mind, I never have writer’s block. I never stare blankly out the window waiting for inspiration to strike- NO! I sit down with a pen and a notebook and fill it cover-to-cover with the world’s most amazing prose, both sides of every page, in perfect penmanship, in a single sitting. In reality I stare at a computer screen until my butt falls asleep and I decide that it is time for a snack.

In my mind, I never get out of practice with my artwork. I set myself up at my drawing board and knock out a small masterpiece, worthy of framing and sale, all within a few hours and without making the slightest mess. In reality I stand at my drawing board trying to scratch out a drawing with a dull pencil while getting frustrated because I’ve gotten so out of practice while my fingertips turn black from accidentally smearing the paper and I finally give up in a fit of pique.

Sometimes I think that reality only exists in order to prevent us from producing work at our full potential. Other times, I think that this difficulty in overcoming reality is what makes creative pursuits like writing and artwork seem like magic. When a piece of artwork springs into existence it is the exception, not the rule. When words make it onto paper, and actually say something meaningful, it is the result of an unbelievable (and unseen) effort of will.

Perhaps creativity is so often dismissed as being a “useful” trait in modern working life because the effort to implement it is often unseen and has so little to do with the creativeness of the idea.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on May 29, 2014.

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