Creativity and Purposeful Activities – Align Your Priorities for Creative Output, part 6

Previous post in the series. 4. Creativity and Purposeful Activities Here is where we get to producing art. A creative endeavor is something you do because you have a need to create something, to put something out into the world. Painting, music, writing, or even something like wine making, are realms of passion, not merely realms of economic activity. Creativity is always something more than a job. A purposeful activity is something different from that in its fundamental drive – things like charity or volunteer work, which are intended to make a difference in the lives of others but aren’t…

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Health – Align Your Priorities for Creative Output, part 5

Picking it up from yesterday with focus area number 3: 3. Health and Fitness Health, like finance, needs to be a priority on some level for every single person. Ignoring your health will have a massively negative impact on you and your creative output. First, you will be unable to do your work with maximal efficiency. If you are tired from lack of sleep, your focus will be shot and you won’t be able to write. If you ignore a problem like diabetes, you won’t be able to function mentally, and you may lose time to being physically ill. Likewise,…

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Beauty in Art is the Reverence of God

I’ll try to give my broadest, most robust theory behind beauty in art: Beauty in art is the iteration of God’s creation. Yes, this is Platonic. When a painter paints a portrait of a beautiful woman, he is iterating God’s creation directly. If he is painting a woman that is born of his own imagination, he is painting an iteration of the concept of female beauty, which is revealed through God’s creation. This extends to music. Beautiful music is a display of the perfect mathematics that underly God’s creation – an ordering of pitches over time according to mathematical relationships.…

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Family – Align Your Priorities for Creative Output, part 4

Family One of the most prolific composers of the Baroque period, Johann Sebastian Bach, had a total of 24 children across two marriages while being the music director at five churches at once. I bring this up because our society is full of messages that a fulfilling career and family are at odds with one another, when they aren’t. I’ve known musicians who tour extensively, all over the world, and who still have families. Active military personnel, who are often deployed for long stretches of time, still have families. If your own family is something you really want in your…

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Money – Align Your Priorities for Creative Output, part 3

Picking it up from yesterday: Let’s take a look at some of these life obligations and what they mean for somebody who has a desire for high creative output. 1. Money Personal finances, for most people, are something that can only be ignored at perilous risk. We live in a world where we cannot provide for all of our needs, so we must earn money to pay for most of what we consume. Even a stay-at-home parent has to carefully manage a budget to ensure the needs of the family are met, even if the duty of earning the income…

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Obligations and Focus – Align Your Priorities for Creative Output, part 2

Picking it up from yesterday: Obligations and Focus When it comes to ordering your priorities for creative output, or even just life in general, I find it helpful to consider what things are obligatory, or unavoidable if you want to maintain your health, sanity, happiness, and integrity. These obligations will change according to where you are in life. For most people they break down into: Money Family Health Creativity and Purposeful activities Leisure and Hobbies Social time Life/household Maintenance You can’t really avoid any of these totally. You have to have money to live. You have to take out the…

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The Attention Economy and Alternative Publishing

Great thread here to spark this article: I sell my books a variety of ways – Amazon, all other alternative direct sales, and through patronage on subscribestar. The problem with building alternative platforms or alternative methods of artist support is not, and has never been, the difficulty of actually programming or organizing such a venture. The problem has always been attention. Building alternatives to Amazon to sell your books is largely putting the cart before the horse. In fact, it is more like building a cart while the horse is still being trained in Arabia. Also, there are dozens of…

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Align Your Priorities for Creative Output

Life is full of demands. Life is full of obligations. Life is full of temptations. Life is often too full of things that each of us wishes to do, and the time during the day is too short to get it all done. The speed of modern life doesn’t help, and it is all too easy to find oneself caught up in the cacophony of urban activity and feel completely drained every day. This is the reality of limited time and unlimited wants. When it comes to figuring out how all of it goes together, I have found that priorities…

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10 Ways to Make Your Protagonist Likable

I’ve cautioned in the past regarding making a protagonist in a story a “Mary Sue” type of character. In short, you don’t want to make a character that lives out your own power fantasies and to whom the plot offers little resistance to the character’s overwhelming power. It’s good to avoid characters like this, but sometimes writers tend to go too far in the opposite direction, creating wimpy, base, or unlikeable characters that the audience doesn’t really care about. In order to avoid having a character feel too super-powered, they instead make them weak or detestable. This is not wise;…

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Romance Writers Implode

Corporate cancer has afflicted the romance writers: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/01/08/romance-writers-america-cancels-awards-program-writer-racism-controversy/ The saga continues. This time, the entire organization has folded back on itself, much like something that is frequently described in the tomes of the membership. This won’t end well, of course, but we must also ponder: What exactly is the point of a professional membership organization like the Romance Writers of America, anyway? Is it a trade union? If so, it’s a shambling corpse in the newpub landscape. Is it for author support? Clearly the constant harassment and infighting doesn’t serve that purpose. They cancelled their awards, so they are clearly…

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