Book Magic



My sister, Bean, the writer, gave me a copy of the book “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert for Christmas and today was the day that I decided to put it in my purse and bring it to work with me to read over lunch. This turns out to have been well timed: here I suddenly have a whole book to read on the elusive nature of creativity and inspiration to read on a day when I’m feeling especially uninspired.

 It’s a feeling that has been going on for a few days: the first symptom was a sense of apathy towards all my music. I would put in the earbuds but fail to cover with any of the songs on a meaningful emotional level. Over the weekend I sat down to work only to find myself easily distracted and uninterested in the projects that usually consume my attention. I even decided to test the “write drunk, edit sober” test, which I understand has actually been proven to have some truth to it ( as long as you don’t overdo it on the boozing) but did not seem to provide inspiration in any remarkable way for me, at least, not yet- maybe it needs a few more tries. Even my sleep has been less restful, in spite of the fact that I’ve been making an effort to get to bed earlier.

I suppose I had such an extremely strong surge of inspiration just after New Year’s that it may have burned off some of my resources, which simply need some fallow time to regenerate. In the meantime, though, inspiration has me caught in the Porter’s Dilemma. As Shakespeare put it: “It provokes and unprovokes: it provokes the desire, but takes away the performance.” 

So I’m waiting. And it’s nice to have a book for company, but also a little infuriating since every few pages I want to throw the book down and spring to my feet screaming “my idea’s getting away!!! Come back!!! I’ll write I promise!!” only to discover that I still don’t actually have the spark I’m looking for. And I’ve got a few lives in Candy Crush, so…

Perhaps this is all just a readjustment to the routine: the Curmudgeonly Lion is back from his travels and so my comfortable habits of eating noodles out of a saucepan and watching Family Guy and staying up until midnight or later are readjusting back to my normal habits of vegetables and Appropriate Bedtimes. Once I’m back in the swing of things I expect that I will find my inspiration will be there waiting for me. 

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 9, 2017.

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