Hands In The Garden – Truly Inspired #2

11cm3k

The Truly Inspired Series

1] Blog Name

Hands In the Garden

2] Genre

Male

3] Blog Age

4 years

3] At what age did you start to write and what was your motivation for doing so?

I wrote a few angsty teenage poems and children’s poems when I was young, but I mostly started writing when I was hospitalized in a psychiatric unit for an episode of psychosis. There was a lot of “dead” time for reflection and reflection turned into words on paper, and so forth.

4] Does writing/creativity come naturally to you or do you struggle to invent something inspirational each day/week/month?

Inspiration comes pretty naturally for me. I am very fortunate in this respect. That being said, I go through dry moments where nothing I produce seems right, or I can’t seem to organize my mind enough to produce. During these times, I usually listen to my brain, or lack of and step away for a moment. Even leaving the room and returning can be enough of a change in stimuli to rejog the brain. I have learned over time that sleep deprivation, recreational drugs and alcohol irritate my writing process rather than enhancing it. Painting on the other hand…. Just kidding, or am I? 😉

5] How prolific are you in your craft?

This is a tough question. I work very hard at what I do and expect a lot of my writing. I feel that my writing has improved tenfold over a pretty short period of time. I attribute this less to talent and more to dedication and being open to receiving feedback and advice from other writers. I am a sponge, and have learned so much on the nuances of writing from other talented published and non-published authors. Those who refuse others’ feedback or assistance in writing are doing their own writing growth a huge disservice in my not so humble opinion.

6] Are your writings displayed elsewhere or just WordPress? If so where?

My writing is currently displayed only on my personal WordPress as well as the Passion Poetry WordPress page where I co-author a site with other talented writers.

7] Do you ever suffer from writers/creators block? How do you combat it?

I sort of answered this question above, but I will reiterate that getting good sleep when possible is really important to the writing process. I would also encourage writers to continue reading, living and exploring the world around them and contributions of other offers. Since, as artists, we become so immersed in our craft, sometimes we forget to take our blinders off, take a break and experience life. And it’s in life experience, and learning that we derive most of our inspiration. Also, try to write with compassion. By this, I mean, if you are struggling with writer’s block, don’ beat yourself up about it additionally. Try to understand that it’s a natural part of the writing process, and pick up on your body’s cues that you need to do something else at this time to return as a better writer.

8] What is your preferred creative form? [writing/photography/poetry/artistry/illustration/design]

I write short poetry and paint with acrylic. I would love to sketch, but everything I draw winds up looking like a buffalo. Expect for a buffalo, oddly enough that winds up looking like a dog.

9] How do you arrive at your decision to write/create/invent about what you have chosen as a subject for the piece/s?

I get inspiration from pictures, life dynamics, and words. Though some of my poems relate to life events, most of it involves lacing myself up in the shoes of someone else, trying to explore their thought process or experience in certain events, struggles and internal battles. My life is far less interesting than those I choose to write about. I will often look at a picture for a few minutes, absorb it and an opening line will present itself, or I will envision a scenario in my head involving lovers, family members and so forth. At some point I hope to incorporate my own paintings into my writing process but have yet found the best way to do so.

10] Do you need an ambience to work with, such as music, quiet, scented candles, yoga, exercise, reading, film or something else?

I mostly work in dim lighting with music playing, though silence can sometimes be the best catalyst for quality writing. I have several song lists made up of mp3 on my computer, and I will listen to them on loop while writing and painting. I find that the results of my writing are definitely influenced by the music I am listening to at the time. I also burn incense and candles as I am also influenced by a strong sense of smell. Smells are so enmeshed with memories and situations that catching a whiff of something can really light the bulb.

11] What helps you to create your content? [people/conversation/family/health/magazines/newspapers/controversy/funny moments/life experiences]

Life around me helps with content, and that’s pretty much the best way to sum it up. Nothing is off limits. I would say diversity in experience and pushing through comfort zones and taking risks has done my poetry much good.

12] Is your content driven by your journey or your story, or by the journeys and stories of others?

I write mainly about other people, living and fictitious, though some of my poetry is certainly autobiographical. Even when writing about someone else, you are perceiving their dynamic or experience through your own lens, so as much as you try to detach yourself from your writing, your poetry still bleeds your colours.

13] Are there any specific things which enable your creative juices to flow more steadily? [overtired/insomnia/mental health/eating/drinking/smoking/surrounded by colour/abstract thoughts and thinking]

Answered above. 😊

14] How long from start to finish would/can your content take you to complete?

My poems are short poems, for short attention spans (mine included) so it usually takes me between 5-10 minutes to write a poem from beginning to end. It actually takes me longer to find a corresponding picture and format it for posting on my website. On a good day, I can produce between 10-20 poems a day when provided adequate time.

15] Are you pleased with your finished pieces? How do you feel when you receive acknowledgement from another?

I am initially pleased with all my poems, but I find that when I revisit them I often feel the need to tweak them. I think this comes from the distance from the work along with improving as a writer. I am not shy about re-working a poem and resubmitting it as I feel that everything in life is a work in progress. It is always flattering to receive acknowledgment and comments about submitted poetry, but I find it even more enjoyable to hear someone else’s interpretation of what I’ve written. It’s usually completely different than what I have intended and that’s what makes it so amazing.

Finally, what advice would you award writers or creators looking to express themselves and to then display their works to the world?

Write you. Try to tune into what feels natural for you and to allow it to flow rather than to make conscious attempt to write “angsty” or “happy”, etc. Don’t let other people discourage you from writing what you want to write, or lead you into directions you do not wish to take your poetry. Receiving feedback is great, but it’s ultimately your craft. If you want to write 100 poems about the eyelashes of a thousand tiny seahorses, you go and do it. Don’t be hard on yourself and realize, as with anything, writing is a craft and takes work. You won’t always initially know how to get those thoughts you have into the right words, but don’ be afraid to explore. Write for the process, not the product, and have a shit load of fun while doing it.

1x8ulo

Genuine thanks to Hands in the Garden for sharing the valuable insights here today.

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