The Creative Process

I have a love-hate relationship with my Idea Bulb.

The shot of adrenaline mixed with utter excitement is like chasing love, at first it may occur to you in the shower or on the can (I won’t apologize for getting good ideas while straddling porcelain.) or while doodling during down time at work when you are wishing desperately that you could be anywhere else. Sometimes it’s immediate and like a dog bounding after a furry intruder that dared step paw in the yard you chase that errant thought until you wrap your hands firmly around it and gaze into its brilliance.

This is it! This is the one, I know it!

You tuck it away like a piece of precious cargo, that you hastily scribbled onto a napkin or a post-it, and it occupies your thoughts for the rest of the day, you analyze it from every angle so you are absolutely sure that when your shift ends and you are free the only thing in front of you is a solid course to bring your genius to life.

You punch out and barely have the wherewithal to mutter goodbye to your co-workers as you speed walk in the most dignified way you can manage to your car, eager to not waste an ounce of your fresh-squeezed all natural organic creative juice. You realize at the first stop light that you don’t want waste any time with menial tasks like cooking food at home so you decide to stop somewhere and pick up your dinner, a full stomach is just what you need in order to fuel your Mad Scientist like abandon once you finally reach the shrine where your vision will be born, also known as, “I swear there is a desk here underneath the papers and empty bottles of Ice.”

So far it seems solid doesn’t it? Every contingency mapped and a plan put in place, a crystal clear idea and the energy to execute it and what seems like an endless gulf between now and 5:30am tomorrow when your alarm reminds that it’s time to go back to work. No need to think about that now, it’s only 3:45pm and once the nice Drive-Thru attendant at Wendys hands over the food you’re off for home, back on track with nothing but clear skies ahead.

The apartment is quiet, which is perfect, you decide to eat at your desk so there is as little distance as possible between you and the start of your glorious project. On the way to the office the socks are discarded as well as the pants, a necessary step in the writing process I assure you, and the soft sigh of your office chair as you settle into it. You dig into your dinner while your computer hums to life and your desktop comes to life populated with a myriad of icons and folders, all of which you recognize as previous projects and ideas, it doesn’t matter though because this time it’s going to be different, this one you are really excited about.

Dinner continues and your mind wanders a bit while the blank Word document sits nestled against the corner of your left screen, cursor blinking impatiently on the bright white page, it’s no matter because you’re already imagining the glorious words that will fill it soon enough. You realize there are a couple resources you might want open while you are writing, a thesaurus perhaps, and a dictionary page just in case, after all it’s better to be prepared so you can maintain a rhythm once you get started. Less editing later.

Almost done with dinner but you remember a great article you saw earlier on break and you may as well be productive while you eat so you open another tab to find it, reassuring yourself that you’re going to read it, pack up your trash and then buckle down and get some real work done.

This is about the point where I look at the clock and it’s now 9:11pm. I finished dinner and I read that article about Bolivia labeling Israel a terrorist state, also Sprint is in the process of shitting all over the concept of Net-Neutrality and CreditKarma is now giving its users free access to their full credit reports which is awesome, high 700’s here- woo!

Now, don’t think I haven’t been unproductive all day, I picked up a package that arrived today for a birthday, cleaned my desk, trimmed my beard, exercised and took a long relaxing shower. I was going to play a little Divinity: Original Sin but I unfortunately don’t have time seeing as how I’d like to try and get a full night of sleep.

Today I did again what I have been doing on and off for years and I get down on myself for it because how is it to be viewed as anything other than abject failure? I wasn’t unproductive but on the same token I wasn’t productive in the way that I desperately wanted to be and have wanted to be since as far back as I can remember.

Unless you count the above, in which case maybe today wasn’t a total loss after all.

Until tomorrow, Idea Bulb.


  • Non-Washable