Friday, May 27, 2016

On Inspiration

The funny thing about inspiration, I'm noticing, is that the more I write, the more inspired I am.

I'm easing into summer break (time off from teaching/the day job), so naturally my afternoon writing sprints have picked up. I'm not writing late at night (when I'm exhausted) anymore, and I no longer have to wait for weekends to get any real work done.

I think I've written somewhere around 20k words these last three weeks, and even though I've outlined and I'm keeping notes, I'm also giving myself permission to deviate as inspiration hits.

And it does hit. Every day I sit down to write with the intention of getting at least 1000 new words on the page. And because I'm totally immersed in this story, it doesn't seem so hard to pick up where I left off.

So it does kind of prove that theory that's floating around: if you sit down and start writing, inspiration is more likely to strike.

(It beats the hell out of piddling around waiting for those "lightning" moments to happen, that's for sure.)

I'm not pretending these words are golden--it's a first draft, after all, and there's plenty of work left to be done. But I like the idea that if we show up and do the work, the magic will happen.

That is all.


Friday, May 20, 2016

Ray Bradbury on Critics

“Those who don't build must burn.”

-Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451


The takeaway?

You build things, or you tear them down.
You make things, or you don't.
The one will never understand the other.

If you get to choose: Build.
It's so much better than burning. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Ray Bradbury on Creativity (Part 2)

“Stand at the top of a cliff and jump off and build your wings on the way down.”

-Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

The takeaway?

Don't wait until you're "ready."
There is no "ready."
Take the risk.
Learn to let go.
Learn as you go.
Trust your instincts.
Amaze yourself.


Friday, May 13, 2016

Ray Bradbury on Creativity (Part 1)

"Everyone must leave something behind when he dies. . . . Something your hand touched someway so your soul has somewhere to go when you die. . . . It doesn't matter what you do . . . so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that's like you after you take your hands away." 

–Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451


The takeaway?

Make things.
Make things that make the world a better place. 
Leave something for us. 
Something that matters.
A place where we can find you long after you're gone.


Friday, April 29, 2016

It's Never Too Late

I've seen this floating around the internet lately, and thought it was worth sharing here.

It's NEVER too late. . . .

At age 23, Tina Fey was working at a YMCA.
At age 23, Oprah was fired from her first reporting job.
At age 24, Stephen King was working as a janitor and living in a trailer.
At age 27, Vincent Van Gogh failed as a missionary and decided to go to art school.
At age 28, J.K. Rowling was a suicidal single parent living on welfare.
At age 28, Wayne Coyne (from The Flaming Lips) was a fry cook.
At age 30, Harrison Ford was a carpenter.
At age 30, Martha Stewart was a stockbroker.
At age 37, Ang Lee was a stay-at-home-dad working odd jobs.
Julia Child released her first cookbook at age 39, and got her own cooking show at age 51.
Vera Wang failed to make the Olympic figure skating team, didn’t get the Editor-in-Chief position at Vogue, and designed her first dress at age 40.
Stan Lee didn’t release his first big comic book until he was 40.
Alan Rickman gave up his graphic design career to pursue acting at age 42.
Samuel L. Jackson didn’t get his first movie role until he was 46.
Morgan Freeman landed his first movie role at age 52.
Kathryn Bigelow only reached international success when she made The Hurt Locker at age 57.
Grandma Moses didn’t begin her painting career until age 76.
Louise Bourgeois didn’t become a famous artist until she was 78.

Whatever your dream is, it is not too late to achieve it. You aren’t a failure because you haven’t found fame and fortune by the age of 21. Hell, it’s okay if you don’t even know what your dream is yet. Even if you’re flipping burgers, waiting tables or answering phones today, you never know where you’ll end up tomorrow.

Never tell yourself you’re too old to make it.
Never tell yourself you missed your chance.
Never tell yourself that you aren’t good enough. 

You can do it. Whatever it is. 


Be Brilliant!


Tuesday, April 26, 2016

We Are Cups

"We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled.
The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out."

-Ray Bradbury

Friday, April 22, 2016

On Prince

Confession: I'm not really a Prince fan--I know and like some of his work, but he was a bit before my "time." 

Still, as the world laments his death, I'm reminded how important it is that we create.

That we make things--give them life--and send them out into the world.

Because those things--art and music and words--they CAN make a difference.

And maybe we will never reach Prince-level fame or attention, but if we've created one thing that makes someone think, or feel, or see the world differently, then we have succeeded. 

Be Brilliant.