It’s happened to you before: all of the sudden, you feel the urge to create. Whether it’s a blog post, a song, a piece of art, or otherwise, the creative juices have hit you full force. So how do you keep the momentum going until you have a finished product to share with the world?
I experienced a creative burst just last week. I was planning a new session of the early childhood music class I lead at my church, when for some reason it seemed like a good idea to write 9 new songs for it. No matter that it was five days away, and I was busy enough as it was.
The single most important step I took to maximize that burst of creativity was to write down my end goal immediately. That way, even when the jolt of inspiration started to wane, I’d have a plan in front of me.
So even though the songs weren’t written yet, I came up with titles and included them in the song packet I was putting together. Then I wrote the lyrics to the songs, which were included in the packet as well. Then I made copies of those packets, so that there was no going back. I was fully committed to writing those 9 new songs, whether I liked it or not!
Luckily, I was still feeling inspired when it came time to sit down and write the melodies and chords the next day. And the next day, when I spent hours recording instrumental tracks; and even at 11 pm that night, as I finished up recording vocals. Sure, I wasn’t as fired up at that point as I’d originally been, but I was looking forward to burning those completed CDs and experiencing that feeling of pride over my accomplishment.
And that’s the difference between letting a dose of inspiration take you where the wind blows and using it to map out a course of action. Because I took the time to do that first thing, I ended up with 9 new songs (which were a hit, by the way) for my class as well as 9 potential new blog post topics. Long live the creative burst!
It is worth giving the muse flesh as quickly as possible so the drive to bring it to life doesn’t wane. That is how to be creative within the other activities of our lives. I doubt I’d have the energy to record at that hour of the night, but you never cease to amaze me!
How eloquently put! I love that. That’s not necessarily my favorite time to record either, but you gotta do what you gotta do, right? :)
You’re absolutely right about making yourself get it down, so you don’t let it slip away. Sometimes my biggest obstacle is time, as I am sure is true for so many creative people. However, sometimes I often feel like I am completely consumed with my “creative burst” and do nothing else until it’s done! Thanks for sharing, Rachel!
I’m with you on that, Claire! If only there were more hours in the day. Thank YOU for reading :)
I lose more creative ideas by NOT getting them down that it frustrates me to no end! That doesn’t mean I lose ALL of them, but many. I find that most of my best ideas come to be in the middle of a session. Often, I can implement those ideas on the spot, record them with my Droid or Flip camera, then work on “fine tuning” them later. Sometimes, though, the idea is much more complex, usually a plan for the next session, and needs to be nurtured outside of the session. Unfortunately, there isn’t an opportunity to get that written down quickly, in a way that makes sense. By the time I have begun working with the next client, I’ve lost it (and most often my sessions are back to back, so no down time in between). Any suggestions, Rachel?