creativity

Creative workshop addictions (and procrastination) can be useful

Do you sign up to a stack of online creative workshops when you know you don’t have time to do any of them? Just me? Oh.

It may have something to do with my personal craving for accountability – anything that might help me sit down and make something. However I think it has more to do with FOMO (which is, as I continually remind my husband, a Fear Of Missing Out). Last week I signed up for four new workshops. Four; in a week. How many have I started? Just one.

And that’s okay – they don’t have strict timelines. Some hosts send a little guilt inducing ‘hello? are you there?’ by email each week, but I’ve learnt to flag them all for later when … I end up deleting them.

This started out as a confession post really, to relieve some of the guilt, or maybe to get myself back in the swing of blogging about process. Yes, let’s go with that excuse.

Creative process is messy, unpredictable, a tad hit and miss. Just to be clear, I’m talking about my own creative process. What does it look like? A bit like this: I sign up to random creative things; I wander to and fro around the craft table hoping my backside will put itself in the chair long enough to create something; I turn on the TV the second after I decide I want to start writing a chapter in my supposed novel; I skim three magazines and start three new books all at once because I’m not sure which will give me the right boost for my own creative works; I let my coffee go cold while painstakingly prettying up the two feet surrounding it with anything Instagram-worthy; I write a blog post about procrastination (pretty much) instead of writing down that idea that just popped into my mind about a character for a future screenplay I may never write… and on and on it goes.

See? Messy. But all absurdly useful… because I enjoy these things. I enjoy this process, and when I do put my pen to paper, good things do happen.

I guess it takes time to learn what your style is, and at this stage of my life, I’d have to label it ‘rebellious’ (for the record, I’m a fully fledged adult; my angsty days are well behind me). It works for me. I’ve tried being all structured, starting workshops on time, reading the right books and following everyone else’s prompts and timelines, but there is always resistance. To the core. It’s part of my nature. And I’m okay with that.

If you’ve learnt nothing else from this insight into my messy mind, it’s that I’m quite content to continue on the path of colourful discovery with borderline eccentric tendencies. It stirs my soul and, despite the plethora of folks promoting otherwise, I’m keeping it messy.

(To the point where, hey – I’m not even going to re-read this post for edits. I’m hitting “Publish” right now.)