As I shoved my bags into the back seat the taxi driver grumbles that he was just about to pull away, apparently, I had taken so long that he had thought I was a no-show. ‘Sorry I was just putting my shoes on’ I say, which I hope conveys that I couldn’t have left the house any quicker unless I was sitting on the doorstep; looking disdainfully at me he turns the car around; and we head off to the station where I am being dropped this morning.
It was great to get a kick in the proverbial creative pants recently from the powerhouse of energy that is Jodie, from Business Allotment. As my regular readers will know there have been many posts about how good I am at procrastinating, and a lot of talk about the various things I am doing that don’t include getting my next book to my editor (sorry everyone that is waiting).
By the end of the ten short minutes of Jodie’s presentation my creative juices were well and truly flowing. A few simple but incredibly effective exercises including turning circles into other things also brought out my competitive side – how could I have not filled in more circles than anyone else? (although my dog, wheel, clock, eye, egg, donut, phillip’s and non-phillip’s screw heads and boob could have been the most imaginative offerings had all the pages been compared).
Anyway, as usual I digress, Jodie also suggested a game that my Dad used to play with us as kids, he would pick any random object around us and tell us what else it could be, for example; a bottle top might be “an ant’s swimming pool” he would then pass the lid to one of us to suggest something else “a mouse’s hat”, “a foot stall”, “a baby hermit crabs summer home” you get the idea. But Jodie added in an extra dimension that Dad never thought of – that the new use can be of any size – whoa, that kind of blew my mind.
Thinking about that afterwards I realised that that’s exactly the point isn’t it? Anything can be small, or the seen in the same way as it always has been our hopes, ambitions, ideas, or they can be massive and totally different. What’s the difference between these two extremes? imagination my friends; creativity is the muscle that imagination uses to fulfil those dreams, and it needs flexing regularly so that it is ready for work when it needs to be used.
This has changed the way that I work already, before I start working on any of my draft pieces I now play the ‘what else’ game with myself for a few minutes as a warm up before the main workout. And you will be pleased to know that I am now ploughing through the final draft of ‘Laughing at Myself’ with astounding speed. Thanks Jodie