This is a first for me, participating in an online book blog group such as Next Chapter: The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women and I'm very excited about it. So far since the first prompt was posted yesterday by Jamie I've visited about 50 blogs of other women - only 1 of whom I'd ever 'met' online before. Because I don't really know any of these ladies yet nor do they know me and many seem to already know one another, I haven't left any comments on individual posts but have found among them an encouraging display of variety of personalities, talents & skills. In some I see bits of myself past and present and I dare hope future as to confidence, achievement/accomplishment and aspirations/dreams. To me that's the beauty of sharing a book experience such as this with a large group.
The 1st Secret is to acknowledge your creative self. When I think of the word acknowledge my first association is the acknowledgements an author lists besides themself in bringing a book forth and those lists are filled with a variety of gratitudes to everyone from spouses, parents, siblings to editors, research assistants, character inspirations and technical advisors. In this context as to acknowledging the creative self I wonder why the word acknowledge is used instead of recognize or something else and dissecting the word a little bit - visually it appears to me to almost a contraction of accept & knowledge - accept knowledge. What that means in the context of this book blog group and where I hope it will take me is accepting knowledge of my creative self as a living being. Living things need nurturing to survive. They must be nourished and fed, studied and monitored so as to learn to recognize both spoken and unspoken needs and be prepared to fulfill them.
Hmmmmmmmmm...I guess I remember first knowing I was a creative individual around the age of 8 when for the first time something I'd handmade (an owl from two joined pine cones with felt wings and facial features) was imparted with enough of me to take it personally when the parent I'd gifted with it wasn't as thrilled with it as I'd hoped they'd be. I later rescued it from its location deposited among clutter on top of the fridge and took it to school to give to my 2d grade teacher, Miss Simpson, who adored owls. I learned then my creative self NEEDS to be appreciated and praised.
Since I was a teenager I've loved to write and I've tried a number of other creative pursuits and after knitting, cross stitch, crochet, etc. I discovered true obsession when I began quilting about 20 years ago. A few years ago though, I just kind of abandoned my sewing machine and fabrics after a much admired friend lost the battle for her life with breast cancer whilst I was finishing a banner to send to cheer her. And it's been okay until fairly recently to let the machine gather dust but it's begun to woo me back to it. That and the fact that I've been grappling with an inspiration for writing a book for almost 10 years now have been the draw to this book, this group and another book some of the women have also mentioned reading/using - The Artists Way by Julia Cameron.
So as to where I am on my creative journey - I'm movin' on. I kind of feel like I'm hitching a ride on a tour bus along with all of these other creative women. I'm along for the ride, the ultimate destination not nearly as important as the scenery and stops along the way.