22. it’s all part of your process

I’ve been struggling with my art practice! Some days I just work at something that never really goes anywhere, like an animation that I spend weeks on only to leave it behind. I’ve been struggling because it feels shameful to be so “unproductive” and if I fancy myself a writer and animator and musician, shouldn’t I be… ya know.. writing and animating and recording music?

I got some relief from this anxiety yesterday as I’ve been reading the book ‘Why We Write’ in which 20 writers explain their process. Everyone is different! 

Sara Gruen has to be all alone. 

Kathryn Harrison uses index cards sorted into a recipe box of ideas. She is adrift when she’s between projects.

Isabel Allende writes until the muse shows up and the characters take on a life of their own.

I just need to respect and come to understand my process. I believe it is a social one and rather impulsive. I do my best work with a social setting and short deadlines, when I embrace some planning. Most of all, when I love the idea it burns in me and I have to make it. When I don’t love the idea, it just festers and bores me and sucks my energy.

Like every other writer and artist, I have my times of inspiration and times of existential struggle. I have moments of truth and moments where I am lost. Coming to understand that this is all part of my process makes me feel less alone and trust the process.

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