Friday, December 31, 2010

The Creative Process by Brewster Ghiselin

The Creative Process: Reflections on Inventions in the Arts and Sciences edited by Brewster Ghiselin is the sixth book in the Transformational Book Circle and the last one I chose to read.  Not because it is also the thickest but because I honestly couldn’t get into it.  I would pick it up, start reading a few of the essays, become bored, pick up something else to read.

This is the problem with anthologies–odds are you won’t find every piece–whether a short story, a poem, or a collection of essays–engaging.  I found so few of these pieces of any interest mostly because they are redundant.  How many times can you read about the creative process being a gradual experience where the seed of an idea slowly germinates, often coming to fruition in a moment of subconscious inspiration.  Do I really need to read more than 20 essays that pretty much say the same thing?  Inspiration, the idea, is the easy part and the rest is hard work.

I also thought that I would actually be inspired by some of the things I read.  Not in the least.  I found myself so bored by what was shared that I was no more inspired to be creative after I read than I was before I started.  That is not to say that I didn’t enjoy reading any of the essays.  Some were interesting enough but none were so stimulating that I found myself rushing to the page to express myself in poetry or even an expressive journal entry.  I truly wish it had been otherwise but there are other resources out there that can hopefully inspire me.  This one merely left me intellectually bored and creatively dulled.

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