Friday, October 10, 2008

Creativity, Where Are You?

Lately I feel as though I've lost my creative side. Is it smothered? Is it dead? Did I grow out of it? Or is of that I'm just tired? It is affecting my work, ministry and even my 'play'..

When I was a kid, I used to play role playing games a lot. Massive amounts of imagination were required. The more colorful and detailed the better. Even today I still run an occasional game with my old buddies, but lately, just haven't felt the spark.

I play guitar. That should be a creative outlet, but again, I feel like I'm just playing the same songs over and over, and yet I'm not improving or growing. I have no new influences to challenge me or share with.

I've been working at KITV 17 years (thereabouts), the last 10 or so in graphics. The same projects come up year after year. The technology improves, but not finding much creative excitement there lately.

Video editing for my church used to be a huge satisfaction. I loved creating testimonies and baptism videos for our church. Not so much anymore. Now I think mostly of the massive amount of work and time needed to pull off a project and I feel overwhelmed by it. It wasn't like that before.

I think this is why some fields, especially repetitive ones, have sabbaticals. An extended period of time to pull out, refocus, retrain, reequip, and recharge. The picture in my head is of an empty water gun. With every pull of the trigger it has strong streams of water flowing from a full reservoir, but eventually it begins to spatter and sputter and eventually only a moist mist comes out, yet many kids keep pulling the trigger. Sometimes you need to take the time and run back to the faucet and refill the tank to have an effective tool again.

I don't know where my faucet is, or how to refill my tank, but definitely feel like I'm running on empty. Hopefully, this upcoming vacation will be the beginning of a recharge, but how full can the tank get in only a week? It's like throwing a cellphone on the charger for 5 minutes before heading back out the door. Almost insignificant.

Don't know what the answer is. 

I signed up for a fun group challenge in November called National Novel Writing Month. The challenge is to write a 175 page (50,000 word) novel I'm 30 days. It is unashamedly an exercise in throughput, not quality. That may be so, but several NaNoWriMo novels have been published and 1 was even on the a New York Times Best Seller! Mine won't be I'm sure, but perhaps is will stir up some latent creativity and give me the boost I need. I have no idea if I can write that much, but we'll see.

Peace, Love and Creativity,


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Clay said...

Sounds like blogging is your thing. I'm not sure how much you blog but this sounds like a great outlet to me.

Sandy Fewell said...

I'm looking forward to reading your novel! I've always wanted to try to write a book----but to write it in a month??? Wow, that sounds like a challenge. But that is your wonderful gift, Rich----use it!

Eutychus said...

Could hitting age 42 have something to do with it? The whole "midlife" thing? I am noticing that a bit with my life - less idealism, more pragmatism, for example.

Bolo said...

Interesting, Rich very interesting...