When I first started doing the TFTBN Tuesday Prompts at the beginning of May, it was hard to get to sleep on Monday nights. I was so FREAKING EXCITED! My mind would swirl with ideas about what to ask everyone. It could not be just any question. It had to be thought provoking. It had to help us all grow in our craft.
I would be giddy with the thought of being able to learn from so many different creative minds as well as learning about myself too. It would take courage and creativity, but we could all do it if we were examining our process together.
We would be BIGGER, stronger, faster…
but without all the bionics
and government funding and junk…
BUT WE WOULD STILL BE BETTER TOGETHER!
(Insert creative superhero theme music and words like “triumphant crescendo”…)
Tossing and turning, flipping and flopping, I sorted through the ideas in my mind.
(Toss) “What are we working on? What is our magnum opus? What is our small project? What is our life’s work?”
(Turn) “Where are we ‘staying’ stuck? How do we get in our own way? How do we trip ourselves up?”
(Flip) “Who are we ACTUALLY talking to? When we begin to create, who are we thinking about? Whose story are we trying to tell?”
(Flop) “When did we fall in love with what we do? What was that feeling? Can we recapture it at will to help us create?”
But wait… there’s more!
On Wednesday, I would create the TFTBN Wednesday Discussion so you would have the video “back story” on what I was thinking about when I created the prompt. It was more than just the prompt reworded. I was expounding on the intention behind it. It was, “You know the prompt. Now, here’s what I think it will help us to uncover.”
But wait… there’s STILL more!
And if all that was not enough, then I would get to do what I adore, TFTBN Thursday Post. On that day, I could be a “plain old writer” doing “plain old writer” type things. I could answer the questions I had posted to the group as a student of my craft not as a moderator to our creative process. It did not matter that I as a grown up I never got an invisible jet like Wonder Woman. I got to WRITE!! THAT was my super power.
(Cue the aforementioned theme music and accompanying crescendo of triumph…)
And that ain’t all!
Then you would reply with your blog posts, and your vlog videos, and your comments. You would read my work. I would read yours. Other people would read. In our own little virtual commune, we would support each other, critique each other, learn from each other, grow with each other, teach the world to sing in perfect harmony. EVERYONE from all over the world, all races, all religions, all cultures, and all creeds would “collaborate” with me and with each other.
It was great!
It was Amazing!
It was AWESOME!
Until… it wasn’t.
(Insert “The Lonely Man” theme from the Incredible Hulk TV show.)
My ideas to engage people started to dry up. It was like trying to ring the last bit of water out of a washcloth. I started having creative tantrums and some very uncreative ones too! Less and less people started to view and participate. What had felt like “marketing and promoting” started to feel like “begging and pleading”.
The joy I had in the beginning dried up like a raisin in the sun.
it melted like your favorite Popsicle
that time it fell off the stick onto the sidewalk
after you begged your Mom to get it for you
and she didn’t want to buy it
because you didn’t have dinner yet
but it was 90 degrees
so you whined and she caved
and she gave you the last dollar in her purse
(a purse as big as a garbage bag with only 1 dollar. smh.)
and you got the red, white, and blue pop
and it was gonna taste good
and the second you licked it
I mean REALLY licked it
it fell on the ground
except in this metaphor
you are like 6 years old
so you can’t say “damn!”
even though you feel “damn!”
in your poor little Popsicle-less soul!
And that is where I am on this Tuesday. Looking at my popsicle of inspiration on the ground melting. Trying not to throw a creative tantrum with the word “DAMMMMNNNN,” bellowing in my mind. I want to do this if it is engaging and stimulating and fun. If it’s not then it’s a chore and I have a butt load of those already.
Now here is the dilemma I experienced… who would I talk to about what I was feeling? The “Non-Creatives” don’t really get what happens in the mind during a creative process.
(To avoid copyright infrigments, close your eyes and imagine watching a video clip of Dr. Frankenstein as he screams, “Look! It’s moving. It’s alive. It’s alive… It’s alive, it’s moving, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, IT’S ALIVE!” Thank you for your participation.)
All of the “Creatives” I admired have at one time or another participated and I didn’t want to get in the icky space of making them feeling obligated to participate just because they had answered a question about how to engage people. And the WHOLE quandary just made first me tired in my mind, body, and spirit.
So… when to going gets tough… the tough GO FISHING!
Not literally, of course. The live bait and fish I can handle. The bugs, not so much. So I am taking this week off and I will see on Tuesday of next week if the creative juices are flowing or if the draught remains.
Now, stop looking at this and GO WRITE SOMETHING!
Ciao for now,
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