Monday, December 6, 2010

Nurturing the Creative

I have several promotions lined up for Scalping the Red Rocks and the other books. On Monday, December 13, I’ll be on a regional radio show during morning drive-time to discuss the new mystery. This is the same show I was on in November 2009 and discussed Under a Copper Moon. It’s a fun thing to do. I’m always a bit nervous, but I try not to think of the people listening, but instead focus on the announcer in the booth.

With the radio interview, it’s beneficial to schedule a book signing the following Saturday, mainly to give the listeners a call-to-action, a place they can go to buy the book. I have a book signing set at Twice Told Tales in Gloucester, Virginia on Saturday, December 18. That’s the Saturday before Christmas. Throw in a trip to see my family in Bristol and getting back home for Christmas and a magazine deadline when I have four articles due and a fight with Intuit Customer Service in India and I’m getting overwhelmed.

What falls out in all these commitments? The new writing project.

In the radio interview, I was going to mention the new project because part of it is set in this part of Virginia, along with the Bristol area, and the Shenandoah area. Now that I consider it, this may be too early in the development to make a comment on radio, especially where answering questions is broadcast to a few people, maybe more than a few – no time to edit before it goes. I’m usually pretty good about editing things before they leave my mind, but being nervous, I say things that I wouldn’t ordinarily say. Not that I have any great secret about the new book. Not that it’s a subject I fear will be “stolen.”

I heard a writer once say that inspiration and ideas need to be protected like a growing child until they can stand on their own and speak for themselves. Other people (“blocked creatives” as creativity guru Julia Cameron calls them) try to squelch the growth of new ideas and developing muses, to stop creativity from allowing a different world view, to inhibit forward momentum. So, this writer, he said not to discuss the new project too much at the beginning, give it time to mature.

Like an infant, this idea needs my attention, care, nurturing. Why is it always the one thing that gets pushed aside? Yes, I know. I’m the one setting the priorities and I think I’ve just worked out what to do: I’m going to go write.

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