I came across this excellent article on 5 creativity myths, and found myself nodding my head almost continually while I read it. If you’d like to do so before you read the rest of my blog post, go ahead, I’ll wait . . . 🙂
First off, myth number one, creativity comes from the right brain. I have to admit, I’ve been sceptical of this one, but now I know for sure it isn’t true.
Myth number two is the common wisdom that brainstorming is good. I have never, and I can’t stress this strongly enough, NEVER liked brainstorming. It was a very popular method for writers to use in helping them plot when I first started writing seriously, but before I was published. I stayed far away :), all the time wondering if I was just too much of a control freak to participate. It may still be true that I’m a control freak, but at least I know brainstorming isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. 🙂
Myth number three is a personal bugbear. Pressure breeds creativity. No. No. No. It does not. Well, for me, anyway. I like to have a schedule that I have to stick to, but the one time I was in a pressure situation where I had to produce work under a really tight deadline, was the worst time I’ve ever had as a writer. When there is a ticking clock, I have the sense that every word needs to be perfect, or I’m wasting time, and of course, every word is never going to be perfect, so I end up frozen, like Bambi in the headlights. Ugh!
Myth number four is another one I’ve always taken exception to. That only a certain group of people are creative. Absolute and utter rubbish. I see creativity all around me. My sister is a scientist, but she also creates the most amazing quilts and bags. Really breathtaking stuff I wouldn’t even think to try my hand at. One of my best friends, also a scientist, is a genuine artist with icing. She has made the most amazing cakes you can imagine. For one of my birthdays she made me a cake that looked like a Chanel handbag, and some people actually thought it WAS a handbag it looked so realistic. Other friends are gardening whizzes or home decorators. Everyone is creative in different ways. My daughter plays the piano so well it sometimes floors me. Talent is all around, and no one has the market on it.
Myth five is something I agree with, but hadn’t thought about much until I read the article. That creativity is all about Eureka moments. I think because I’m a writer of longish novels, I’ve always seen creativity as a process that starts with a small spark of inspiration but which needs a long time to develop into the creative project it eventually becomes. Eureka moments are fun, but they are only the start of things, for the most part.
Which myths did you think were true, and what are your thoughts on creativity?