You’re Halfway There

Today is Day 3 of 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut. You’ve been introduced to the concept of the Idea Pocket. You’ve collected some items to include in it.

Now it’s time to use it.

Today, you need a pen and notebook and your Idea Pocket. Sit down, open your notebook, and take a breath. Pick up your Idea Pocket and pull something out.

Don’t pick and choose. Pull out the first thing you touch.

What is it?

Today, I would like for you to journal about it. Write a poem, an essay, a freewrite that might turn out to be nothing (a note about that in a minute). Sketch, color, scribble.

It doesn’t matter what you do.

Just do something.

Do it for 10-15 minutes.

At a later point, you might decide to cook something based on what you take out of your Idea Pocket. You might want to get out some watercolors and paint. Or you might decide to go for longer than 15 minutes. For now, journal, whether that takes the form of sketching, coloring, scribbling, or writing.

Remember what I said about “even if it turns out to be nothing”?

The important thing here is that you do this as a practice. As a way of learning to get in touch with your creativity. THAT is the purpose. That is the “thing” it is “supposed to be.”

It is what it is. If it helps you in any way, so much the better.

After you’re finished, either put your item back in your Idea Pocket or (preferred) put something new in and discard the thing you just used. Unless it’s some kind of memento that you want to keep.

Tomorrow we’ll go a little deeper.

5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

Oops!

I made two mistakes.

First, on Tuesday, I did a book spotlight for a book that’s already been promoted and free. I can’t do that one again until 90 days have passed.

Second, today, I almost forgot to do a blog post. With the way today has gone, I thought about not doing one at all, but here I am.

I wanted to take this time to remind you about the challenge that’s starting Monday.  5 Days to Get Out of a Creative Rut.

I’ll post information here Sunday night and invite you to the Facebook group. If you want to participate and cheer each other on, that would be the place to do it in addition to posting on Facebook and Instagram.

With that in mind, I want to show you the challenge image again. 5 Days to Get Out of a Creative RUt

Spotlight on Create Your Own DIY Planner

The first draft of this book was written in a notebook while I was at various doctors’ appointments. At the time, I was keeping a Bullet Journal. I had several people ask me how to do it.

I repeated myself so often, I decided to write a book. It’s not very long, but it doesn’t have to be. Please be aware that in this book, I’m not talking specifically about the Bullet Journal Method. That is the intellectual property of Ryder Carroll. I am, however, talking about ways you can create your own DIY planner. Because of that, I have no doubt there are some similarities.

Because of it’s brevity, this book is only available on Kindle.

Price: $3.99

As with all books in the spotlight, it will be free starting Friday, November 9 and ending Tuesday, November 13.

Introducing Courses & Book Bundles

Thinking
Image used courtesy of The Public Speaking Project under a Creative Commons license.

I have been sitting on a couple ideas for quite a while and I think it’s beyond time to get going with them.

What is it?

Courses!

I have two in mind.

40 Days of Creativity Challenge
This one will start the day after Thanksgiving and go for 40 days. That will take us into January. If you look at the calendar, that’s going to be more than 40 days because we will skip Christmas and New Year’s Day. Anyone who enrolls will receive a Kindle copy of 80 Creativity Tips as part of the cost of the course. I’ll let you know more details very soon.

Journal Your Way to Creativity
This course will be more involved. The book, Journal Your Way to Creativity, is a 90-day self-guided journal to help people tap into their creativity. That’s three months. This would have weekly videos where I would talk about the prompts and some of the reasoning behind them. A Kindle copy of this will also be included in the cost. Once again, I’ll let you know more details very soon. This one would not start until sometime in January.

Book Bundles
Not exactly a course, but still a source of (possible) education/information. I will offer bundles of books, a box set, if you will, at a special price for a limited time. I will have these ready to go by the day after Thanksgiving.

This is all going with the plan to be more intentional in what I offer to you and why. It will come together in a cohesive program I call Living Your Creative Life.

Look for more details soon! Don’t want to miss anything? Consider signing up for my email list so you’ll be among the first to hear about new books, courses, and videos.

It’s NaNoWriMo Time!

NaNo-Shield-Logo-WebI’m a day late with this post. To be honest, I didn’t decide until late Wednesday night that I would be participating in NaNoWriMo this year.

I know a lot of you know what NaNoWriMo is, but there are probably a lot who don’t.

November is National Novel Writing Month. It was started in 1999. In 2005, they became a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization.

Here is a little bit about NaNoWriMo (or NaNo for short):

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) believes stories matter. The event began in 1999, and in 2005, National Novel Writing Month became a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. NaNoWriMo’s programs now include National Novel Writing Month in November, Camp NaNoWriMo, the Young Writers Program, Come Write In, and the “Now What?” Months.

Last year, NaNo had some pretty impressive numbers.

  • 402,142 participants, including 95,912 students and educators in the Young Writers Program, started the month as auto mechanics, out-of-work actors, and middle school English teachers. They walked away novelists.

  • 972 volunteer Municipal Liaisons guided 646 regions on six continents.

  • 1,195 libraries, bookstores, and community centers opened their doors to novelists through the Come Write In program.

  • 65,962 Campers tackled a writing project—novel or not—at Camp NaNoWriMo.

And lest you think it’s just a vanity exercise to see if you can do it (50,000 words in one month is a lot for some people and not-so-much for others):

Hundreds of NaNoWriMo novels have been traditionally published. They include Sara Gruen’s Water for Elephants, Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus, Hugh Howey’s Wool, Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl, Jason Hough’s The Darwin Elevator, and Marissa Meyer’s Cinder.

But, really, this just scratches the surface of all that NaNo is. To learn more about it, I encourage you to visit the site and poke around in the “about” section. If you want to try it, leave your NaNo username in the comments here and I’ll add you as a writing buddy.

I’ll see you tomorrow. I have some writing to do.

It’s the Little Things

IMG_20181031_205345910.jpgSometimes the way we get ourselves set up makes a big difference on our creativity.

Case in point? The image on this post is how I’m currently set up. Per doctor’s orders, I have to have my foot propped up as much as possible. I had been working at the kitchen table with my foot in a chair. That didn’t really work all that well because I couldn’t use my external monitor.

We had an extra monitor, still in the box. And there was a desk in the kitchen that was mainly used as a catch-all. (I know we all have areas like that in our houses, right?) I cleaned it up and set up things the way I like them. The way I can work with them.

And now?

All of a sudden, I want to write all of the blog posts. lol. I want to edit all of the stories. Write more of the stories. And so on.

It seems like a little thing. And, really, it is. But sometimes it’s the little things that make such a big difference.

Is there something keeping you from creating the way you want to? What can you do to make it better? Sometimes all it takes is a little change to make a bug difference.

Minor details.

Live & Learn … Or Get Brain Rot

reportersnotebook_black
Photo of reporter’s notebook by grafixtek on Flickr and used here with Creative Commons license.

This is something I’ve said for years. I don’t know if I came up with it or if I made it up. But it’s true. If we aren’t learning, we’re not growing. At best, we’re stagnating. At worst, we’re deteriorating.

To that end, I like to go to a couple conferences a year. And I read a lot and watch informational videos on YouTube.

Last month, I wasn’t able to go to one of my favorite conferences. This week, I’m making up for it. I found a free conference with great content. I didn’t have to go far to find it either. It landed in my lap. I saw a Facebook ad for it.

My point here is, our lives, our creativity, depend on learning. We don’t have to pay a lot for it. But we do have to invest time. That’s one thing we claim we don’t have enough of, yet everyone has the same amount of time in one day. Take 15 to 30 minutes out of your day to read or watch a couple short videos.

Learn something. Your brain, and your creativity, will thank you.