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Messages - mgriffin

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Every creative person has times when it happens more easily than others.

Some of you may know I also do some fiction writing. It's always interested to me that everyone knows what "Writer's Block" is but nobody talks about Painter's Block or Guitarist's Block or Photographer's Block.

In my experience, some people have a difficult time getting started not because they've lost the creative knack, or the impulse to create, but because they've begun putting pressure on themselves to create something "great" or "important" rather than just creating for the fun of it.

When we start out, we often just goof around and explore, and follow whatever weird path we discover. It's fun! There's no sense of "Tonight I must create a wonderful new album."

Eventually, after we have been creating for a while, and especially if we are "known" as a creative person, we can start thinking that each new piece of music or writing or art has an audience out there who will judge it. "This stuff better be good," we think, and the process doesn't flow as naturally or intuitively as it used to.

Very often writers I know who become blocked are like this because they've started to think their first drafts need to be sharp, polished and well-organized. It's even happened to me before, when I fell into the trap of thinking this way.

The way I avoid it is by always insisting that the "first draft" stage -- whether we're talking about writing or music or any other creative endeavor -- should be loose, and fun, and have no expectations attached. I believe "All first drafts must suck." I mean, I really believe it. I don't just let myself think that in order to try to relieve pressure in the early stages of the creative process. I really believe you'll do the best work when you remove any self-judgement in the first steps. You'll never get anywhere if you're judging your words (or your playing, or your composition) in mid-process. Just get it out, have fun, dare to make mistakes, then go back later and tidy it up.

Some art forms seem to deal with this better than others, and I think it's because of this that some creative people get stuck or blocked less than others. Most bands jam and goof around a lot. Most artists make a lot of loose sketches or studies. A solo ambient artist in a studio without anyone else there to play off of, it's tough. Same with a fiction writer, staring at a blank page.

Give yourself freedom to jam, to sketch, to run wild and act crazy. Don't let the "editor mind" interfere with the process. The editor mind will get its chance to judge, to alter and try to perfect, but only later.

That's good advice, Loren.

Also, I should say that there was some good stuff in Pete's topic, and I think we would consider re-opening the thread after some of the offending posts have been trimmed out, and tempers have cooled. Of course if we do that, the thread will have to be watched-over with an extra close eye for inflamed tempers.

I'm going to lock this thread, because there are people who have been warned about the direction of their recent posts, but who are still going at each other.

I am going to use a quick trigger when it comes to deleting messages or banning members. I would really hate to ban a valued member of this forum because they decide they're so angry they want to lash out, and don't care what happens.

I've read what he said and I consider that an insult.

The post has been edited. Please don't try to inflame things and make the situation worse.

If we are going to start banning people for things that were posted, and later changed or removed, you would have already been banned.

When things get inflamed like this, everybody remembers the insults and affronts they have been given, and nobody wants to be the first to start behaving responsibly again. But that is what MUST happen, or else we will have to ban everybody involved, or shut the forum down completely.

Everybody needs to cool off, please.

We intend to enforce the rules of the forum. Just because you are angry at something someone else has said doesn't mean you can break the rules in response.

If someone posts something you consider a violation (personal insults in particular), please report the post to the forum moderators and admin. We're going to moderate a bit more tightly for a while until order is restored.

Everyone please remember the point of an internet forum is discussion and the sharing of ideas. Simply put, we come here FOR FUN. It's not supposed to be a series of arguments or insults or belittlements. We all need to behave better, please!

I guess I will add:

The moderators and admins of the forum are aware when a forum member changes their name. It's very easy to see that recently, Crossing the Threshold became Cosmic Fabric, and that name has just been changed today to Crepuscule.

We don't object to people changing their name because they wish to identify as a new name which they like better. Since people aren't required to use their true name as a forum username, I don't see any reason why a person couldn't change it.

One thing we won't stand for, though, is name-changing as a way of deceiving other forum members or the general forum community, or to enable the causing of disruption. If the idea is to create trouble under one name, only to switch to a new username in order to avoid facing responsibility for trouble caused under the old username, all I can say is that is something we will stop. Intentionally causing disruption or trying to upset the community or other forum members is something that can get users permanently banned.

The reason we permit people to change usernames on a given profile is that if we don't, people will frequently abandon their profile and create new profiles over and over, every time they want a new name.

Overall, it causes fewer problems this way.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: The Origin Reversal
« on: Yesterday at 08:21:02 AM »
Cool news -- and a great cover! Congratulations.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: On Inspiration - Chuck Close quote
« on: September 17, 2014, 07:03:21 PM »
No, Castleview is right. Quit being so confrontational and rude. There have been thousands of people visiting and posting here over the years, and only a very small number have problems getting along with others. Consider that if you're angering or irritating a large number of people, it might be something about your approach.

Fun, and funny. And I'm surprised to see this chosen as a subject for humor!

Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Now Reading, pt 2
« on: September 08, 2014, 09:32:32 AM »
Chris23, thanks very much for the feedback. I'm glad you enjoyed the story!

Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Now Reading, pt 2
« on: August 28, 2014, 12:53:42 PM »
I recently read Suttree for the first time, and loved it. It was great to see McCarthy working in a different mode - funnier and more personal. Still very harsh, though.

We still sell CDs, but it does seem like people are less inclined to talk about them, whether they liked them or not. Maybe people are worried we'll be offended if they have any comments other than pure praise, but that's not true. Not every new release can be everyone's favorite, we realize.

Other Ambient (and related) Music / Re: Aphex Twin
« on: August 18, 2014, 07:22:07 PM »
I've been getting all excited since the announcement, until I remembered that I didn't particularly love Drukqs. I mean, it was a decent enough album, but not that kind of thing to make me line up at midnight outside the record store the night before release day to make sure I get a copy, you know?

It's just good to know that he's going to get back to releasing music again.

I hadn't seen the thread in several days, and it's only now come to my attention that things seem to have derailed here. I've skimmed the whole thread, and I'm going to lock this while I determine which posts to delete and which members get warned or banned.

Hello, Lance. I hope you'll find everyone friendly here.

Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Now Reading, pt 2
« on: August 11, 2014, 11:20:29 AM »
Didn't see this over the weekend, as Lena and I were traveling for our anniversary -- but I'm glad your copy has arrived. Hope you'll enjoy!

Welcome, Chris!

Art and Literature, Movies and TV / Re: Now Reading, pt 2
« on: August 04, 2014, 08:46:23 AM »
Maybe it's just because I'm a fiction writer myself, but I always find it interesting to hear a writer talk about where their story came from, how it developed, and all that kind of "behind the scenes" stuff.

If you're into SF/F at all, the Coode Street Podcast is a wonderful resource to explore. They do a new one every week.

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