I scribbled this note the other day while in the middle of something else, and it's not comprehensive or anything, but it's been sitting here on my desk clarifying the shit out of a lot of my thoughts for a couple of days, so I wanted to say something about it.
I call my blog Herding the Dragon because a whole bunch of years ago, before grad school, it occurred to me that being creative and trying to live a creative life was like herding cats, but harder. I like dragons, so I sort of jokingly called it "like herding a dragon". And I kept it because dragons are big and toothy and sharp-edged and can burn you, so it seemed more and more appropriate as I started getting into what it really means to be be creative.
See, I've had this sneaking suspicion that it's not just whether you're creative or not. I think everyone is creative, or at least starts out that way. I think the difference between creative people and people who don't feel creative is the way they live their lives and the things that they keep track of inside them. And from there, there's stuff about how cultures handle creative types and all that.
So I have this vague cloud of things that I'm interested in. And there's things that I'm interested in because they're cool, other things I'm interested in because they're necessary, still others because they're good ideas, or useful, or idealistic. And I've been looking for a way to make them all make sense as one thing, a whole thing that is me and my interests.
Then, I had a flash of inspiration, and I doodled this thing, and it was like the act of drawing it connected some stuff in my head. All of the things I'm interested in are for the purpose of Herding the Dragon. Some are for smoothing the way. Some are for keeping things balanced and lined up. Some are for feeding. Some of the things are creativity itself, the expression of it and training of it. And there's still things I need to work into the list--on a bigger piece of paper than a 2" postit mini-note.
But it's a start, right?
Herding the Dragon.
How do you pull everything together? I'm sort of obsessed with making sense out of myself so I can feel like a holistic unit and not a collection of fractured bits. And right now, this is how I'm doing it. Do you mind map? Do you list? Share in the comments!
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