Alignment and Distancing

Embracing creativity — something we are exhorted to do these days — means embracing a process. This cuts against the grain because we would like to think that embracing creativity is embracing a spontaneous act of just doing it. Just splashing the paint on the wall or madly scribbling about characters and plot. That just isn’t how it works for us.

But what about artists like Mozart? Even with a person like Mozart, process came first. He lived with music for years before he could claim that he had mastered the process of creating it.

So what does this process look like? There are two aspects worth considering. One is something called a “hunger for psychic alignment”. The hunger creates a certain type of pose — one of the intensely receptive mind. The second is distance – distancing oneself form the ego of creation in order to assess the quality of the product. There is, of course, much more more to it. And Zadie Smith has a lot to say about the process of creative writing. Check it out!

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