Friday, November 1, 2019

Picture This: Renewable History


The course title looked so interesting that she could not resist. Renewable History. What if she COULD go back in time? What would she change? What would she fix?

Would she go right for the really big stuff (President Kennedy don't go to Dallas!) or simply fix the relationships she'd messed up. And, oh, she'd messed up a few.

Maybe it was her attention span. She'd stay interested. She get passionate. She'd be all about the all over of everything connected with her partner and then...and then her partner would do something so annoying she just couldn't believe it. A misplaced fart. A dirty toothbrush. A wet toilet seat. A scratch on the car.  That was the picture. She could never picture herself staying with anyone forever, even though she always said that she would.

Isn't that what they wanted to hear?

Like that dinner at that Mexican restaurant in Louisville. She liked it really spicy. Her partner was a spice wimp. He couldn't take the tears. Wasn't that always the case? He couldn't take the tears.

She could take the tears. She could let it rip. She could tear up a relationship like it was nobody's business -- and wasn't it just HER business anyway?

Five minutes, she thought. Five more minute of this and I'm out of here.

Renewable History. Hmm. She thought. Maybe Tennis 101 is a better choice...

-- doug smith


PICTURE THIS:

1. Pick a random image
2. Write, inspired by that image, for five minutes and then stop.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Creativity Prescription


A useful question: what would be an even more creative way to make this better?

Remember, everything can always be improved. Creativity is your best prescription.

-- doug smith


Thursday, September 26, 2019

Picture This: The Other Side of The Wall


She stood staring in the mirror. How did she get here? What was that sound coming from inside the wall? And why were the paper towels under the paper towels?

She moved the paper towels. She turned off the faucet. No make-up to fix and her hair was fine pulled up in a pony tale. Now, about that noise.

Ever try to hear what noise is coming from the wall when someone in the room keeps flushing the toilet? She'd need to leave the room. She'd need to be on the other side of that wall. She left the room.

The sound of her footsteps clicks down the hall. The toilet flushes again.

From the other side of the wall she can hear a very tiny voice whisper, "The paper towels were not yours to move..."

She does not hear the disturbing sound from inside the wall. She does hear the toilet flush. Again.

"Enough of this," she sighs. "Time to get to work."

-- doug smith



Picture This:

1. Find a random image (truly random, do not select the picture.)
2. Write for 5 minutes with that picture as your inspiration. Stop.


Inspiration from Steppenwolf

I found this while looking for something else and it reminded me of how much of an influence this wild piece of improvised music had on me when I was young. It goes all the way back to 1967, and legend has it that the improvisation was necessitated by the late arrival of the lead singer, John Kaye.

I remember listening to it over and over as a kid in high school. It (or a similar recording) was featured on a double live Steppenwolf album. I love the subtle build and the almost spooky transition into the song "The Pusher." This still sounds great to me, and the early improvisations have influenced my own musical improvisation.

Check it out.




Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Creativity Is Hard Work


Wouldn't it be great if there was a magic formula you could use to make you as creative as you wanted to be whenever you wanted to be creative?

Press the button! Turn it on!

There is no magic wand, button, or switch. There is no magic.

There is discipline. There is practice. There is exploration and discovery. But, no, no magic.

Creativity is hard work, not magic.

Let's get busy.

-- doug smith


Monday, September 23, 2019

Dig Deeper


"When do you stop creating?"
"You don't."
"Ever?"
"Ever."

The gold is deeper. The song grows in rows of understanding. The time keeps ticking but the ideas will not run out as long as you prime the pump, practice relentlessly, and keep creating.

Creativity prods us to dig deeper than we've ever dug before.

Keep digging.

-- doug smith


Keep Creating


Stay creative as long as it takes. It takes longer than you think.

-- doug smith