Priming the Pump . . . or, an attempt to see beyond my Monday piles of laundry.

Sometimes the well runs a little dry when it comes to ideas, and I find that's usually when I haven't been working much.  Because when I'm working, there always seems to be no shortage of ideas that I can't get to because I'm too busy . . . well, working.

Wouldn't it be wonderful to have a continual fountain of ideas --
a library of sketchbooks to mine for gold, for instance, or a gigantic rolodex with an index card containing every great idea we've ever thought of but didn't take time to write down and therefore forgot?

Oh . . .
you DO have those things?


I'd like to come up with a way to record those fleeting ideas that wouldn't result in piles of paper scraps bearing unintelligible scribbles in a shorthand so abbreviated that even I have absolutely no idea what it was originally intended to represent.

I think it's helpful to do a little something creative every day.  Because even when I'm not actively working on a project, if I flip the "creative switch" for a second or two I notice it's like throwing a little oil on the gears, keeping them ready to move should I provide them the opportunity.

While I maintain that the Minneapolis Star Tribune's horoscope writer is perhaps even less in touch with the forces of the universe than the average person, I felt that she hit it right on the head the day she penned this:

Great advice for me, and even if you're not a Gemini, 
probably good advice for you, too.

And when I can't bring myself to actually DO something creative, it seems to be equally effective for me to look at other people's creative efforts.

The more art I absorb, 
of any kind,
the more my mind
seems willing to produce.

Which makes sense, because it's not fair to expect to get great ideas out 

when you don't put anything great in.

Charles Horton Cooley said,

"The mind is not a hermit's cell, 
but a place of hospitality and intercourse."

And yes, there is plenty of coming and going in my head . . . 

I guess I just need to up my hospitality a little

in hopes that my ideas will be tempted to 
sit down, relax awhile and maybe talk to each other. 


Amelia and Justin said...

I'll tell you, even though I am exhausted, I still find that I want to be creating something. I am planning on starting my Christmas ornaments soon, so hopefully that will help :)

Karen S said...

So true -- a closed mind is an empty mind.

Allie said...

What a great post- I seem to go in spurts, I get 100 ideas on one day then nothing for the longest time! I'm going to try being creative EVERY day, and not just punch the clock trying to finish up projects. I think I'm turning off my own creativity by saying to myself 'just wait, finish this first'.

Pam said...

"...wouldn't it be wonderful to have a continual fountain of ideas..." I remember my daughter felt like that, but it didn't sound half as polite when she said it, leading up to her Masters of Creative Writing that you were so thoughtful to praise. Thanks Susan, from all of us.
May The Muse be easily courted and wooed-and may it feel free to drop in, bountifully creative, unannounced at any time. I think many a time during that mighty effort my daughter felt stood up!!x

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