Thursday, March 18, 2010

Be Creative!

Do you have other outlets, besides writing, where you express your creativity? Do you knit, play music, sing, do arts and crafts, paint, sculpt, draw, dance, act, or do interior design? If so, make sure you're not ignoring those "other" parts of your creativity.

I slept for three hours last night and woke up with lyrics in my head. Uncharacteristically, I got up (normally I'd replay the words over in my mind until I memorized them and go back to sleep) and for the next three hours worked on a new song. This, too, is uncharacteristic for me. Normally, I write songs in less than an hour - often in less than half an hour. This one, however, I'm taking my time with. It's emerging as I chip away at it like a sculpture. And, you know what I've discovered? It would be the perfect theme song for my YA novel. The tentative titles are either, "Love Never Dies" or "Bitter True." (BTW, this pic is one of my faves taken of me a few years ago by the talented Steven Langdon.)

Remember that song I told you I'd perform before summer? This may be it. Or it may be another. Point is, keep those creative juices flowing. One art form feeds another.

Reading is also a creative passion.

I've also been reading again, which I haven't in a while. Like most writers, I've been a voracious reader most of my life. However, over the past year and a half I've written nearly five full novels, so I've spent much less time reading. Lucky for me, I won the book, "hush, hush" by Becca Fitzpatrick on the ever-lovely Kimberly Franklin's blog. (She also sent me chocolate, by the way. Seems those subliminal messages really do work!) I'm picky about what I read. If I'm not completely drawn in by the first few pages, I move on to the next book. (I'd be a vicious agent!) This book is magic. It's fantastic, beautiful, mysterious, fun, dark, and sexy. I'm completely hooked. I'm in awe of her seamless writing and the constant hum of tension she maintains on every page. This is probably as close to a book review as you'll see on my blog, but I may invite Becca over when I'm done reading and see if she'll grace me with an interview. She's raised the bar for me as I embark on the fourth draft of my novel, and I couldn't be happier or more inspired.

So, what other creative outlets are you utilizing as you move forward on your writing and life journeys? Are there talents you're leaving by the wayside as you focus on your writing? If so, would taking time out to reacquaint yourself with those talents feed your writing?

I'm asking you this because I have most definitely taken a break from my music as I've embarked on my writing. In fact, this is the first song I've written in nearly a year. That is a very long time for me to go between songs. I realize this is a detriment to the health of my soul. Being creative and fully self-expressed is the way we humans manifest our souls in this world.

So today, get out there and dance - manifest your soul - BE CREATIVE!

52 comments:

Sybir St. John said...

Can't wait to hear the song! I paint and sculpt - I can get lost for hours in either, just like I can with writing. You definitely have to remember to honor all aspects of your creative self, it keeps the stories flowing!

Kaela said...

Thanks for the encouragement! I'm impressed that you can write songs. I can sometimes come up with lyrics but never the whole song. Perhaps the fact that I can't play the guitar is part of it ;)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Stacia, I'll play it for you in person soon! I'd love to see your paintings and sculptures, too. Any pics?

Debra L. Schubert said...

Kaela, I started playing guitar at 17 and immediately began writing songs. I play by ear, can't read music at all.

Lyric writing is fantastic, though. That's a great creative outlet. I LOVE writing lyrics!

Jody Hedlund said...

Beautiful reminder, Debra. It's easy to get so focused on our writing that we neglect the other aspects of our creativity. Thank you.

Kelly said...

What a great pic of you!
I would love to hear your new song one day!

Julie said...

As often happens, you and I are on the same page, BFF. I've been delving into some other creative pursuits and have found it to be rejuvenating.

Love Ya!

Debra L. Schubert said...

Jody, You're welcome - it's so easy to get encased in our writing. There's nothing wrong with that, but it's important to stop and smell the other beautiful roses as well.

Debra L. Schubert said...

Kelly, Why, thank you, my dear! I will be vlogging a song in the next month or so. I'll be sure to let you know. ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Julie, It's so nice to see your beautiful face on my blog! I'm glad you're diving into other creative endeavors. Let's plan a time to talk SOON!!! ;-))

Kimberly Franklin said...

You really sing?? I can't wait to hear your song! And I'm so happy you are loving Hush, Hush. Becca's writing is beautiful. I aspire to write as good as her.

Glynis said...

The song is meant to be connected to your other work, if it came at you from a different angle.

I make cards and card toppers to sell in a craft shop.
I often find the mundane cutting out time, is the time I think of ideas for books.

Have fun :)

Sybir St. John said...

Hmm, I will have to see where that digital portfolio is hiding ;)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Kim, Here's my myspace link. I'll also send it to you on Twitter: http://www.myspace.com/karmachain

And, again, thanks so much for the book and the chocolates! What a perfect combination. ;-)

Tere Kirkland said...

You're so right! I sing in the winter with the symphony chorus when our events slow down at work--I'm a photographer for a museum, so it's fun to be "exposed" ;) to so many types of art every day. Yesterday I scanned documents signed by the pirate Jean Lafitte.

Lately I've also been reading a lot and making jewelry. I'm pretty happy with most of that, except that I'm supposed to sell it at the farmer market, but I just want to keep it!

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I'm a little over halfway through Hush, Hush right now, and I'm loving it. Thanks for the "creative" motivation. :-)

Summer said...

I couldn't agree more. I've been really antsy since having my wrist surgery last year, as it's made me incapable of drawing, painting, playing the violin or piano. All I can do is write, and I'm teetering on the edge of burn-out.

Look forward to seeing/hearing whatever song you decide to play for us. :-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Glynis, I thought about making my own line of greeting cards years ago, but never got motivated enough to do it. I bet it's fun - good for you!

Debra L. Schubert said...

Tere, Wow, you are one creative girl. Love it! And, I'm a total jewelry freak. There's no way I could make something I loved and then sell it. I feel your pain!

Debra L. Schubert said...

Shannon, Isn't it awesome to be in the middle of a great book? And, how cool that we're both reading hush, hush! Also, you're more than welcome for the motivation - it's my pleasure. ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Summer, So sorry about your surgery. It's amazing how something like that can slow you down. I hope you'll be back to pursuing all of your creative passions again soon. ;-)

Stephanie Thornton said...

I love reading and writing as my main outlets of creativity. However, I took up painting last year. I'm not very good, but I love it!

Karen Walker said...

Debra, you have a lovely voice - I bopped over to the link you left on your last post. I sing as well. We perform at retirement communities and it fills my soul with joy. I also folkdance--the cultural dances from countries around the world. You are so right that it is important to feed all aspects of our creativity. Would love to hear you sing in person some day.
Karen

Debra L. Schubert said...

Stephanie, Painting! How brave and wonderful. I've always dreamed of doing that. My maternal grandmother started oil painting at the age of 40, and produced many gorgeous paintings. I will definitely give that a try one of these days. ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Karen, You are so sweet. It is such a mitzvah (roughly translated, means "good deed") that you sing for the elderly. What a gift you're giving them and yourself. And, folk dancing from different cultures is also something I'd love to do! I've always loved dancing and choreography. Man, I better get moving - there's so much to do and so little time!

Jemi Fraser said...

I like most of the arts. I love to sing, but have never done it in public. Well, unless you count the classroom :) Being a teacher, I get to dabble in all the arts all the time. I enjoy drawing and doodling and creating patterns. I can play some piano, but can't get my fingers to work on the guitar. My son's tried to teach me, but it doesn't work. So sad - I love the guitar.

CKHB said...

Hmm. Must go dance now.

Ruthanne Reid said...

One art form feeds another.

That deserves to be a poster - it's so incredibly TRUE. We have to feed the well in ourselves from which the creativity flows... or it can and does go dry.

I want to hear this new song. :)

Carolin Seidenkranz said...

Absolutely love that picture of you, it's gorgeous! =)

Coincidentally, I'm currently also reading Hush Hush. Loving it so far and can't wait to finish it.

As for other creative outlets aside from writing... I love to cook and bake and try out new recipes. I've always wanted to be able to play the guitar or the piano, but so far that didn't work out! Maybe at some point in the future it will. =) I've always enjoyed singing, but haven't really found the right group to do it with, so that's a little on ice. I really like to knit though! I made some kick ass fingerless gloves in winter that came in really handy while typing. :-P

Kelly H-Y said...

Wow, you write songs too!? And sing them ... and play the guitar ... you are one talented lady! :-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Jemi, Being a teacher is such a commendable job - and the fact you get to be creative is definitely a bonus!

I was lucky - I picked up the guitar and started playing. I played piano when I was younger and never had any desire to play guitar. But from the moment I touched it, it was like magic. I started writing songs immediately.

And, good for you for singing. I know I'm biased, but in my book (no pun intended!) it's one of the most wonderful things anyone can do. ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

CKHB, Nothing beats dancing to cranked up rock and roll!

Debra L. Schubert said...

Ruthanne, I'm glad you like that saying. It's so very true. And, maybe you'll get to hear the song one of these days. I'm rusty on guitar right now, so I've got some practicing to do. I promised, though, so one of these days... ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

Caroline, It's crazy that you're also reading, "hush, hush." We've practically got a book club going here!

And cooking - how could I forget cooking! That's a great artistic venue for so many. I'm definitely not gifted in that area (to put it mildly!) but I greatly admire those who are. And fingerless gloves rock. I bought a pair a couple of years ago that I completely love.

Debra L. Schubert said...

Kelly, I've been writing and performing my own music for more years than I care to admit. I'm grateful for the ability - there really isn't anything else like it. ;-)

Kimberly Franklin said...

Love the songs! You really can sing, who knew? Apparently not me! : D

Thanks for the link!!!

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

I draw and paint and play the piano. I often find that the creative process is intertwined somehow.

Looking forward to hearing your song!

gael lynch said...

Debra, you are 'right on target' as usual!! I think cutting back too much in an area you love makes you feel like you're 'starving yourself' in order to write! Breaking away to putter in the yard, to fill my head with visuals when I'm out for a run, to sketch or dance or even sing for an hour or so...all set me free! I forget that! Thanks for the reminder!

Wait...5 NOVELS in one year? What? You're killing me, girl!! You're a ball of energy!

Debra L. Schubert said...

Kim, Thanks for listening - glad you liked the music. ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

CCD, Drawing, painting and piano - good for you - you're so creative!

Debra L. Schubert said...

Gael, "I think cutting back too much in an area you love makes you feel like you're 'starving yourself' in order to write!" Brilliant. I couldn't agree more. ;-)

WendyCinNYC said...

That IS a great picture of you. Sexy mama.

I read a ton, but that's about it in terms of creativity. I have no talent for visual arts, except appreciation. So I go to a lot of museums.

Debra L. Schubert said...

Wendy, Glad you like the pic. Going to museums is a passion that drapes you in the arts. I bet you've gotten ideas for writing when visiting. I love museums, too - don't go enough, though. Thanks for the reminder. ;-)

Midlife Jobhunter said...

I'm thinking five novels is pretty creative. Escape into song writing sounds so difficult to me. I knit, but I never thought that being creative. Rather rote. Wow. Now you have me thinking. Does gardening count?

Debra L. Schubert said...

MJ, Gardening absolutely counts! You're cultivating beauty in a peaceful setting. Highly creative. Another one of those gifts I wish I had!

Sharon Mayhew said...

Wow, you write songs too! Outstanding!

lotusgirl said...

This is so about me. I love being creative. In addition to writing, I sing, I paint, I do photography, I play the piano and trumpet, I knit. Each thing nourishes a different part of my psyche.

I've got hush, hush on my tbr list.

Debra L. Schubert said...

Sharon, Yup - I've been writing songs since I was a little kid, but seriously since I was 17. Hundreds I've written over the years - they're all my "babies." ;-)

Debra L. Schubert said...

LG, Good for you for expressing each artistic aspect of your soul. Your soul must be doing a constant happy dance. ;-)

I just finished "hush, hush" last night. Great read!

Kathryn Magendie said...

I read a lot - every night, and finish a book quickly - esp if it's good.

As for talents; I don't know if I have anything other than my writing. I can't sing; I can't draw. I did act in one play "Bat Boy the Musical" a couple years ago and had a blast, but it is quite a committment and not sure I'll do another one.

If I have another talent, I haven't discovered it yet. Writing seems to feed all the things I hunger for.

Debra L. Schubert said...

Kat, When you're as good of a writer as you are, you don't need any other creative outlets. ;-))

jmartinlibrary said...

I hear you on the reading thing. Having just finished a MS, I finally have time to recharge and read again! I miss that steady diet of good words. There just aren't enough hours in the day to catch up on all the good things out there. GREAT post--you are a kindred spirit, I suspect.

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