Creative Juicer

July 6th, 2010

I wish I could pull all the stuff off my mood boards, throw it in a juicer and come up with some fresh ideas. But it doesn’t work that way. I have the walls in my office covered with photos and quotes and ads that should be inspiring, but when you’re a writer and you find that your job has become more about Excel spreadsheets, job interviews and the dreaded bottom line, it’s more of a burr than a spur. I find myself cramming writing an editorial or cover copy in between holding sales meetings. And since we’re prochoice and liberal, we attract nuts like a pecan pie, so occasionally I have to write polite fuck-off letters when I really want to stab someone with my gel pen.  So it’s hard for my spark to survive in the office, as cool and terrific as it is, as cool and terrific as my coworkers are. And when I get home from work, I don’t want to think or make a collage or start an essay. I know lots of poets did their work while holding down mundane jobs in mainline businesses, so why can’t I suck it up and do the same?  It’s the age-old dilemma of being forced into a niche that’s so narrow it squeezes the life out of your work. It’s the sadness of not being allowed to try something new because that’s not the way it’s done. It’s the frustration of being hemmed in by rules instead of being handed a hall pass. Does anyone out there have the same experience of being tugged between right and left brain every day?

3 Responses to “Creative Juicer”

  1. Oh, Yes! My secret longing is to fling off all the work for pay and endeavor only for the joy of expression. For some reason, my muse doesn’t like being sidelined, so when I must tend the garden of work and hear the muse whispering, niggling around the edges of my heart, I ask her to wait. But she is an impatient vixen and so, flies to others who are ready to receive. Would she come if I dedicated my time to her imminent arrival? It is my dream, my hope and my goal.

  2. I think the reason we have blogs, home studios, and weekends is because no job is ever going to be all about free expression and pure creativity.

    That’s not to say we shouldn’t enjoy our work and care about it, but we should recognize it for what it is: work is a means to an end, a way to support ourselves. If we like money, we have to cater to the market (and the spreadsheets, and the economy, and the bottomline). If we want to feed our Muses, express ourselves all day, try out new ideas regularly, take bigger risks, and possibly live like hobos, well, that’s an option too. : ) I think complete creative freedom and making money seldom go hand in hand.

  3. nikki says:

    so true, V-Grrrl…it’s striking a balance. And I’ve taken on too many extra work projects that I didn’t need to! Blogging on two sites is going mean scraping the creative barrel to come up with different ideas!

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