This week I learned …
This week’s TWIL post is themed for writers and other creatives. I’m a writer (mostly) so I’ll use that term throughout, but feel free to replace it with whatever type of creative you are (e.g. painter, singer, actor, sculptor, YouTuber, podcaster, etc.). Of course, I think some of these could apply to everyone, regardless if you’re a creative or not.
Here’s my big epiphany for the week:
It’s ‘writer’s brew’ NOT ‘writer’s block.’ Your brain needs time to process the ideas brewing in your head. Once the brew is ready, open the tap and drink up!Tweet
Just as different types of stews, soups, beers, wines, and other liquor take different amounts of time (and ingredients) to brew, so do different writers. For me, I’m starting to realize that I’m not the type of writer who can just write everyday. I did that at one point, but it left me feeling burnt out.
Lately, I’ve been embracing the mindset of writing once my ‘writer’s brew’ is ready. That is, I’m thinking about the next scene I want in my story, the characters, the dialogue, etc. And I’m keeping it in my head until I feel I’m going to just burst! Then I grab my pen or keyboard and put those words down.
So far, it’s been working and I’ve left my writing sessions feeling more satisfied than if I had just cranked out a minimum amount of words. In addition to making me feel more satisfied, I think this also helps me create higher quality of work which will (hopefully) save some time/energy during the editing phase.
This reminds me of Stephen King, who I once heard saying he aims to have six pages of high quality writing every day. I’m nowhere near the level of writing as Stephen King. Nor do I expect to be. I’m Anthony Nanfito, not Stephen King. I admire him from afar, but I have to walk my own path on this writers’ journey. And so do you fellow writers reading this.
This idea and the ones shared below, connect to an Instagram post I shared earlier this week about taking care of your body because it’s the vessel through which you create your art. I hope these help you on your writers’ journey as they have helped me.
Below, you’ll find my tweet-sized summaries and a few takeaways for each topic. As well as the source, in case you want to take a deep dive into the topic yourself.
Let me know in the comments which topic is your favorite. Happy writing!
You’ve been called to create, so create! (via Unpublished)
If you’ve been called to create art, ignore the inner and outer critics and embrace it. Create your art. YOU are the sort of person who writes/paints/sculpts/sews/knits/codes/films/creates. So do it!
- The narrative you tell yourself is the narrative you will live. Do you want to be the creative that’s constantly seeking the approval of others or do you want to simply give yourself permission to create? Whose approval matters most: theirs or yours?
- As creatives, we all are intimately aware of how long the journey can be toward creating our art. Thus, we should be more compassionate toward our fellow creatives. If they’re rushing/struggling, remind them they can go at their own pace in a gentle manner that works best for them. (Hey! That’s what I’m doing with this post! So creative, go at your own pace to create your art. If you need permission, I give it to you!)
- There’s no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way for how you choose to create your art. And what works best for one might not work for another. We’re all on our own journeys and we need to respect that. (See my previous comment about myself and Stephen King.)
The Lie of Laziness (via Unpublished)
Research shows the average human can only do high quality work for about 3-4 hours per day … yet the work day is typically 8 hours. The ideal would be to have a min & max for working time.
- Embrace what energizes & excites you. Don’t just eliminate that which drains you. When creativity & passion strike, run with it! Life is short & far from perfect.
- Take a break when you need it. Creatives (in fact all of us) need rest. Creating is hard work and draining. When we rest, we refill our creative wells which let us create more & do what we love.
- Quitting or not finishing a project is okay too. Just because you didn’t finish the project doesn’t mean you didn’t learn something in the process or that it didn’t provide value to you at that time.
The MYTH of the Bulletproof Writer (via Write Now)
A bulletproof writer? More like the MYTH of the bulletproof writer. This is the writers’ pep talk I needed to hear from the Write Note podcast.
Note: This TWIL was also a Tweet thread I shared last week.
- No writer (or creator, or anyone) is “bulletproof” and immune to the challenges of life. Life will throw challenges & obstacles at you no matter how “successful” you are. We just have to do our best each day & try again the next.
- The Stephen King quote (“Life isn’t a support system for art. It’s the other way around.”) resonated with how I’ve been shifting my own mindset with regards to my writing & what I create.
- Our bodies are the vessel through which we live and experience life and only when we take care of them will we be able to create our art.
Thanks for reading!
If you liked this post, share it with another creative or on social media. You can tag me on Twitter @wordsbyfifi.
Don’t forget to leave a comment: which topic resonated the most with you?
Blog Post Updates
Never miss a blog post! Sign-up for email updates below and you’ll get an immediate email when I post new stuff. Unsubscribe at anytime.
Note: This is different from my free Nanfito Space Newsletter, sent out monthly, which features updates about my current writing projects, books releases, podcasts, and more.