Inspiration and Art

I pulled back from writing my blog for a while because I was working on my first book. I finally finished it in August and sent it out to a few willing folks to review. I am starting to receive their reflections and can see that I have more work to do before I publish.

Asking for honest comments on a work of art is a truly vulnerable thing to do. Fortunately the people I chose are kind-hearted and their criticisms come through softly. What is important to me is that they took me seriously enough to be honest. They understand how important it is if one wants to put something out into the world that people will like and want to share with others. Once I get all of my readers’ responses back, I will edit the book one more time before moving toward publishing.

My daughter, Heidi, shared with me a marvelous book by Elizabeth Gilbert, author of the popular Eat, Pray, Love. “What is Creativity?” she poses in the opening page of her Big Magic. She answers, “The relationship between a human being and the mysteries of inspiration.” What I got from the book is that art is not totally our own. Rather, we are in-Spirited. We don’t have to do anything about the Spirit come to work through us, but when we do, the outcome is something not totally our own. Rather, it is a dance between the Spirit within us and our own talent, hard work, and determination. Gilbert did a good job communicating just how inspiration works and how we can cooperate to produce our art.

Gilbert’s book was timely for me. It not only helped me in the finishing of the book, but it enabled me to let go as I moved into the next phase. It is amazing to me how free I felt handing the manuscript out for review. I had little or no fear of rejection because I believe that the work is inspired.

Those who read this blog will know when the book finally gets published. Meanwhile, I look forward to returning to writing my blog. I have had to let many thoughts pass by without grabbing them because I was focusing on the book. Hopefully, if they were worthy, someone else plucked them and shared them through their art.