How to Conquer Writer’s Block: Tip 69

iStock_000003629418XSmall-330DARE TO BE A DANDELION
I love reading comments by writers about their writing process. This morning I read a quote in the NYT by the novelist Rachel Kushner. “All those things I was interested in – motorcycles, art, revolution and radical politics – don’t seem to be connected, yet I thought they could become so, in the space of a novel.” And then she adds, indicating that risk is a part of her creative process, “…there had to be the real possibility that the novel could be a disaster.”

That is a remarkable view, that the terrible fear of failure we often harbor during the creative process is an important part, for her. And that combining disparate, seemingly unconnected elements, though scary, is what creativity and originality are all about.

This reminds me of another writer’s quote, by Neil Gaiman. He was speaking to publishers, but I think it applies to writers, too. Dandelions, he said, have thousands of seeds and they ” let them go where they like…(only) 100 of them will sprout…You just have to become a dandelion, be willing for things to fail, throw things out there, try things, and see what sticks.”

It takes courage to dare to fail, but that’s also the definition of creativity: daring to experiment.

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