Thursday, February 11, 2016
Yesterday I started a new book. At this point, it's not a new thing. In fact, it's quite a familiar thing -- pulling up a blank page with the intention of filling it with words that will become a new book. I've actually been doing it for a long, long time. The photo below is a peek of a "book" I made when I was 7 or 8 years old about a rabbit who gives a valentine to a lion. Why a rabbit and a lion, you ask? Well, because those were two animals I knew how to draw, of course. These days, I don't draw pictures to go with the words, which takes a lot of pressure off, let me tell you, and I usually type my story on a computer. But it isn't any less fun, starting a new book. I usually think something along the lines of - "Okay, here I go. Let's do this!" After I opened a new document, I typed my name in the upper left hand corner, followed by my phone number and email address, although it's probably not necessary since my agent certainly knows how to reach me. But it's habit, and I think, in a way, I like doing it. It says, this is mine. This is my story that I'm going to create from a blank page. From nothing. I'm doing this - ME!!! This is the thing that slays me about art, of any kind - at first, there is nothing. And then the artist does their thing, and voila - a thing exists where nothing was before. Whatever you do, whether it's drawing or painting or writing or web design or photography or cooking or sewing or crocheting or sculpting or video making or songwriting or (insert your thing here), I hope you take a moment every once in a while to marvel in the fact that you are a creator. And even if you dance or act or sing or play an instrument or perform in some way that doesn't necessarily leave something tangible behind, you are creating. And here's the thing about creating -- you are living such an interesting life by doing so. It's true, right? When I am creating, I am not worried about politics in that moment. I'm not worried about health issues. I'm not worried about money. I am creating, and my focus is there. I have a vision, and I am in a special place that exists only in my mind. I am so thankful for the ability to create. I hope you are too. And if, like me, you question your talent or abilities every now and then, or every five minutes some days, remember that there are so many worse things we could be doing than doing our best to create something good in the world. Whatever the outcome, we are creating. And that is so completely awesome.