Friday, November 8, 2013

soup 11.8

I have been thinking this week about the seasons and how necessary they all are. These months are so much calmer- so predictable and steady, and I am feeling more creative energy and finding more space to work and making some good progress on the book.

Again this year I considered NaNoWriMo, but November begins with a birthday and ends with Thanksgiving, and isn't a month that I can devote solely to a project. However completing the first draft of the novel I am writing by the end of this year does seem achievable. The only goal I have now is to finish my shitty first draft by the end of this year.

Shitty first drafts are liberating. They free you to try ridiculous things, to experiment, play, paint it out and start again, in red this time. It is so much fun.

Painting has made me pretty familiar with the creative process. So much of it is not rational or conscious. I am very aware that right now I am just laying in the broad strokes. Roundish, lopsy figures, taking a pallet knife to block in the undertones, sketching in what may be a barn, or may become a plate of oysters, but something is telling me that something needs to be there.

The creative process- so illogical and unexpected and magical. It feels good to be in it again.
"Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life, and it is the main obstacle between you and a shitty first draft. I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough, hitting each stepping-stone just right, you won't have to die. The truth is that you will die anyway and that a lot of people who aren't even looking at their feet are going to do a whole lot better than you, and have a lot more fun while they're doing it." -Anne Lamott

Two good links this week:

I'm a Feminist Because I Love Jesus So Much: Interview with Sarah Bessey at Christianity Today

The 'Stubborn Gladness' of Elizabeth Gilbert's Favorite Poet-- this is so lovely!
 Gilbert takes this middle way, and I think it’s a far better way: he says the world is terrible andwonderful, and your obligation is to joy. That’s why the poem is called “A Brief for the Defense”—it’s defending joy. A real, mature, sincere joy—not a cheaply earned, ignorant joy. 


Jeannine Atkins said...

I came over here after happily reading your Thoreau poem, I see below, at your friend's blog. Thank you for the link to Elizabeth Gilbert's essay on Jack Gilbert and wonder. I've been enjoying her novel which delves into that theme. Good luck with yours! (I can't do NaNoMo either, but like to know others are plowing or flying along!)

Corinne Cunningham said...

I'm beginning to love shitty first drafts :) I really wish nanowrimo was in a different month! November just feels so full already... good luck with your end of the year goal :)

charrette said...

Hello, Friend. I just spent the loveliest hour diving into your words, and remembering how much I miss reading them. Hoping all's well in your neck of the woods. Sounds like it very much is. I'd love to hear more about your novel.