Archive for May, 2010

I do not feel my creativity is corrupted nor stilted when I approach my writing as a business. On the other hand, I have to expend mental energy fighting the concept of financial validation. I think there is an inherent conflict there, but I understand how to channel the two mindsets.

As I was getting my Fine Arts degree, I repeatedly encountered higher education’s attitude that a TRUE artist had to totally ignore the commercial aspects of their art. To achieve expertise and fulfill their potential to create something new and innovative, the artist had to be free of “worldly considerations.” I argued with the concept then as I do now. I feel an artist has an OBLIGATION to understand the commercial aspects of artistic endeavors.

The reality is one has to live in order to create so one must “make a living” to allow for the freedom of creating. Every soul-deep artist will tell you their goal is to only pursue their art, to have that work provide an income to meet the needs of daily living so they can continue the pursuit. Artists know that “life” fuels their imaginations, but living life is NOT free. Someone has to provide for the basic needs while the artist is creating! Once upon a time, there were wealthy benefactors and today there are contests with sizeable monetary awards for the same purpose.

Pick an artistic discipline, any one at all and you will find that money had to be invested in attaining proficiency in that art form, even creative writing. Not to study, train, practice is idiocy of the highest order. No one is perfect when they are just learning. Actually perfection is an illusive goal that requires study, training and practice.

A writer could tell an oral story or recite a memorized poem without expenditure, but to expand one’s horizons of imaginings one has to read and books (or computers) cost money, even public monies if you are thinking about the library. To meticulously analyze one’s own writing, paper and a writing instrument are necessary. Just thinking the words, images, sentences will not make them the same every time. Committing them to paper will “freeze frame” them for thoughtful examination. In my case, I HAVE to invest money in my “equipment” because I work in many disciplines and would NEVER remember everything. The destruction of one disk loaded with poetry I had not printed out clearly impressed that point on me.

I believe the artist must battle the pragmatic emphasis on compensation as validation for expending the time and effort required to create. That’s where the REAL line has to be drawn. As artists are being trained I feel those people in higher education need to focus on THAT concept, yet provide students with the knowledge of how to market their talent, how to make a living at their art. I do not feel my work is cheapened by that approach to living life as a creative writer. I can survive in the real world, knowing MY true living is done in my writing.

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From A WRITER’S YEAR by Sally J. Walker.

May 21
I read a comment that intuition was considered by some people to be among the “paranormal abilities.” I don’t agree. I believe intuition grows from experience and knowledge and the ability to “pay attention.” Focus allows one to consider, filter, process. When focus becomes habit, I believe it leads to a perpetual awareness as intuition. People awareness means one watches how people act, comparing what they say and their body language to what they actually DO! Any in-depth knowledge in a particular field makes the learner more cognizant of that field. Chemists can anticipate chemical reactions and sense abnormalities. Meteorologists look to the sky and sense how animals are acting. Geologists contemplate rock layers, attuned to the potential for earthquakes. Mothers and their children, a twin and the one who shared the uterus, a cop and the body tension in someone at a traffic stop, an animal trainer and the barest shift of the animal’s eyes. At some time each of these has been referred to as “intuition” when the feelings are really born of intellectual awareness.

I also think of it as a primal instinct to preserve and protect one’s own survival. Many physical signs are directly related, like goose bumps and hair raising on the nape of the neck resulting from “adrenalin dumping’s” effect on skin cells and hair follicles. The sense that “someone is watching you” or that someone is invading your personal space even before anything is heard or seen is another example. These are sensory signals to prepare one to react.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying intuition cannot have a paranormal side as well. I believe this to be almost a genetic marking in the person’s DNA, a particular extra awareness to specific triggers. The Gaelic peoples have referred to it as “Second Sight” or merely “The Sight.” A variation of this hints at seeing the future in either day dream fashion or deep sleep’s vivid depictions. Personally, I have had frequent “deja vous” experiences wherein I live the precise brief sequence I had had in a dream. I’ve never been frightened. Rather, I have felt prepared for the consequences of the experience. There is no smugness in that explanation; it just “happened.” It’s happened often enough throughout my life that I know it has not been “wishful thinking.” Sometimes the eventual experience of what I had dreamed was NOT pleasant, so I discounted that concept. When I was a child, my mother told me, ”You have too vivid an imagination for your own good.” Within my mind and spirit I knew that was true, but not as far as my “intuition” was concerned!

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