Friday, January 14, 2011

My Perspective on Creativity

I started getting more interested in creative nonfiction after a writing group a couple of months ago. A group member shared a story about her life and it touched me. One of the other members started talking about a recent conference he'd attended and mentioned creative nonfiction. I'd always wondered what you'd call my writings about my boys and my life. Creative nonfiction.

Isn't that a great way to describe one's life? I'd never thought about it, but it makes sense. When I tell a story about my boys, my quirky sense of humor kicks in. The way I talk about the escapades is completely different than what I was thinking and feeling at the time. Okay, most of the time anyway. But I think you get my point. Each of us has a point of view. It's not right or wrong, it just IS. My writings are simply MY perspective on life.

I've been reading memoirs lately. It's so amazing how these people put themselves out there. I read one about a poet's struggle with alcoholism; a former football player who went out for a fishing trip with three friends and was the only one who survived when the boat capsized; a man who was sentenced to prison at a leper colony not too long ago (I had no idea such things still existed in the United States). All of these people, from different walks of life, told their stories. Is that courage, or what?

The creative soul is fragile. Each time you put your work out there, no matter what your niche is, it takes courage. You know someone won't understand your quirky sense of humor, or your cynical perspective, or (fill in the blank). But does it really matter if some people don't get you? Don't like you? Probably not. Does it still feel "wrong"? Maybe. Do you stop creating? No more than you can stop breathing. I tried. (to stop creating, not breathing) I was miserable. I'm happy when I create. I'm at peace with myself.

For the first time, I put my occupation as a writer on a form at the doctor's office. Now, that may not seem like a big deal to some people, but for those of you who've struggled with who or what you are, it is a HUGE deal. Go, me!

Until next time, blessings.

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