The Creative Habit
Since we’re all creative people here, I want to mention the best book I have ever read about creativity. It’s The Creative Habit by the noted choreographer, Twyla Tharp.
The Creative Habit is generous, authoritative, intelligent and well written. Each page brims with advice, specific how-to’s, questionnaires and exercises about how to open your mind, overcome fear, deal with failure, defeat distraction, clarify your thinking, make your way through confusion. There is guidance about how to find solutions when you know something’s wrong but don’t even know quite what the problem is or how to define it.
Using an extremely wide-ranging set of examples ranging from Homer to Proust, from Ulysses S Grand to Ludwig Wittgenstein and Pope LeoX, from Merce Cunningham and George Balanchine to Ansel Adams, Raymond Chandler, Mozart and Yogi Berra, TCH offers a detailed road map based on Ms. Tharp’s own journey to defining her own creative identity. Practical, down to earth and never flinching from the nitty-gritty, Ms. Tharp explains the importance of routine, ritual and setting goals, how to know the difference between a good idea and a bad idea, how to recognize ruts when you’re in one and she offers explicit guidelines about how to get out of them.
Her advice is useful for beginners—and also to more experienced creators. She candidly describes what, specifically, she did to make the transition from habits that served her well in the past to creating varying approaches that lead to exciting new break throughs.
You will find out about the value of “doing a verb” and about building a bridge to the next day, about the relationship between failure and success, the miracle of second chances and what to do when denial is no longer an option. It is hard for me to imagine any writer who won’t learn from or be inspired by a book that is part memoir, part manual, part how-to.
KISS AT KIHALI ... romantic suspense set in an African animal orphanage.
I wrote this book to help bring attention to the brutal poaching which is bringing rhinos and elephants to the brink of extinction and to the valiant men and women who are working to protect these vulnerable creatures.
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