52 sundays; january 18, 2015

It’s a gray day here in the Midwest and I find myself pulling inward, desiring to get quiet and create – to write, to try a new recipe, to paint a wall. It’s hard work as I’m a perfectionist, always picking apart my work, always comparing, always believing someone else can do it better – and as my Life Coach tells me, ‘They can – but the others you’re referring to cannot create, cannot do what you do, Debra. You are the only one who can create what you see.’

This quote from Ira Glass reminds me that creating is hard work. I’ve posted it before but find I need to revist his words – maybe you do too?

“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.” ― Ira Glass

I’m making an attempt to get myself outside this winter; yesterday’s walk at the small cemetary down the street from our house offers a quiet refuge for my mind to settle – it also gives me an opportunity to be present. As we rounded one corner, the sunlight caught these rolled bales of hay leftover from the fall harvest – at first glance, they looked like nothing more than moldy bales of hay. But seconds later, I saw the beauty of those bales standing in an open field with remnants of snow in once plowed rows. The winter blue sky with wisps of white clouds as the light wrapped itself around a nearby tree trunk had me pausing to capture the moment.

Create something today – happy Sunday!

 

3 Comments

  1. The timing of this post is perfect for me. I’ve been beating myself up as a food blogger lately – “I don’t have a ‘voice’,” “I’m not interesting enough,” “I don’t know how to write stuff that people would actually want to read.”

    This is a great reminder to just keep plugging along – and to remember that everyone I think of as a great writer (or photographer, or cook) probably already put in a hell of a lot of work to get there.

  2. Sunlight on hay bales… I love it when God stops me in my tracks and shows me something beautiful!

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