January 14, 2013

Creative Collapse

Self-Portrait, Vincent van Gogh (via)

Mid-December, I went through a creative collapse.  It’s true that this time of year always gets to me.  I’m not sure why, since I love Christmas and all that.  It was set off by being really sick with the flu and also realizing that we didn’t have the funds for me to go to a couple of great conferences I’d planned on. (How selfish is that?)

But this one propelled me back to how I felt when I was in my teens and late twenties.  My interior monolog tears me to shreds and I have zero creative confidence.  I’d taken on loads of creative antimatter.  It was so bad this time that I didn’t even want to read—it was too painful, reminding me of what I had lost. 

Let me repeat that:  IT WAS FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE I DIDN’T EVEN WANT TO READ. 

It feels so selfish and self-aggrandizing to say all this, but it’s the truth.  I’m now starting to come out of it, thanks in part to Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, which has helped me tremendously in the past. 

Anyway, feeling better now.  Working through it.  For me at least, it seems to be part of the creative process.

2 comments:

Melospiza said...

One thing I always forget, until I'm knocked out cold creatively by something I didn't see coming, is how much of writing for me rests on a blithe confidence that what I write matters. Something that strikes at my personal confidence, or conversely, is so huge and horrible that individual lives seem meaningless, make it almost impossible for me to string words together.

I'm not sure how helpful that is. Mostly I'm just saying, I get it.

Tamara said...

That is so well put! So much of it IS confidence, and thinking about the meaninglessness of life is so very counterproductive. Very helpful - thank you!

May you have a very creative year.