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2020-12-15 - 8:55 a.m.

My oldest asked me if my son told me about the book The Artist's Way.

Yes! He had mentioned it was transformative in helping him provide structured habits in cultivating time and space to create.

They said to me " All you need to know is this:

Wake up and first thing write three pages of whatever comes. No edits, stream of consciousness.


Once a week take yourself on an artist's date to get in touch with self. Resist any company.

It may be an overtly art focused event like going to hear music, seeing a show, play or going to a museum, or
It could be taking time for a walk in the woods, going to a coffee shop with a notebook to write,

or taking a bike ride.

But something that is a unique change of scenery and distinct experience from norm
that provides beauty and peace and joy ( my interpertation).

I presume seeking the peace and calming of mind needed to create.

Creation happens at times out of a frenzied emotional need, yet I think that should be the exception and not the rule. We are all drawn to joy as much as we are drawn to an alignment with others knowing they understand our pain. Often the best art juxtaposes the two, mirroring life.

This makes me think of my intense study of Poe and artistic aestetics of when he wrote , how he expanded the understanding of beauty by allowing space for the darkness more overtly within it, and wrote of the madness of being overcome by the act of creation to the extent of it being self destructive.

I was fascinated and repel the notion the artist must be destroyed by their creation ( which Poe implies).

I think that same desire for joy is to be found and celebrated and captured in art then elevated and magnified, which is precisely why my impression of Joyce Carol Oates master class makes me initially think perhaps I need to just ditch it and try another class for me. She seems to always have understanding trauma at the center of her work; and I don't want that to be my center!

In the lectures this master shares many profound truths.

Similar to the Artist's Way Joyce Carol Oates advises in writing to just quickly get the first draft down, then go for a bike ride or a run or swin and daydream over the story filling in details by visualization of it as if watching a movie. Imagine if you are seeing the play, the sitcom or the movie of the story in images.

Brilliant! That allows the writer to notice setting, details, colors, texture, and imagine dialogue.. .

enriching the story ,
fleshing out the visualization to be described.

So I already learned much from her lecture.

She also suggests start with a shorter form, be it poetry or short story and send it out for publication as nothing is as motivating as the affirmation you ARE a good writer others will want to read.

Yes! ( Journalism, or magazine articles works too... being paid is a great reinforcer.)

What is funny to me however is I don't count advertising or promotion writing in that, or web content in my head initially! And perhaos I should as of course that is currently the most prevalent and effective writing.

Upwork has many freelance writers who seek promotional writing and are paid well for it.

I have zero interest in marketing writing.

I have to do it to get my business up and running. I worked at promotional spots for a radio station years ago as an intern and found it just the silliest thing. I worked on web sites and marketing for a church ( for about a year, a small Unity congregation) , then was Marketing Director of arts non profit. I was working full time so was moonlighting staying up working until between 1an to 3am about once a month getting a Constant Contact newsletter together with quality content. I ran FB ads and we had a record # of new people show up for our events. I ran targeted fundraising campaigns. I had team of six folks some who cold called local businesses and developed an effective phone script, some who pounded the pavement asking local businesses to hang old fashioned posters for our big events.
I was so filled with joy and enthusiasm.

Our donations were literally 20K higher than the prior year due to the whole collective effort.

Six people working hard make a rocking marketing/fund raising team!

Yet the org leaders really were a bit clueless. I failed in pulling the data analytics in a clear form to present and tie the success to the campaign. I VERBALLY reported at board meetings. Oh yeah...I had sent in a written report but the host of meeting never printed my report I emailed the report to the chair the couple times I wrote a report it but she printed averyone else's updates but mine, never seeming to get it. So Instead of being orgaized and printing it and bringing it myself or emailing it it to all board members I I admit I just gave up on all that time for a written monthly report that was ignored! I pitched the idea of a formal report of our financials to share with our supporters, and pitched the idea of developing a reserve fund to deaf ears. Not completely deaf...two other board members were interested and we worked together on a grant application for developing reserve funding and a formal campaign for asking for donations to support a reserve fund. We worked hard on the pitch to our board, who required convincing just gor us to work on the grant application. We did not receive the grant AS a volunteer I just learned to not stay up til 1am the night before a board meeting to prepare as they were not that interested anyway.
So I just gave verbal updates from then on.

I was then ousted as Marketing Director when ran a FB ad for an event of a reading of a new play which included a beautiful illustration but had a misspelling in it.
Yes the artist spelled a word wrong. I of course noticed it!
But it was in the context of this absolutely georgous piece of art, a watercolor the artist created to announce the play's reading. The artist got it to me late

We had no time for a fix frankly as understood on line marketing timing. We needed to send the blast out THEN if wanted people to know of the event.

Hell we are all volunteers! So with the artist's permission I ran the georgous painted image which was stunning and had one small error of a misspelling some might notice, but many would not. Honestly both the artist and I agreed effectively getting the message out of the event was the priority!

Heck this is also a DISABLED artist. So I though regardless of what disability there is a message in that which is

YOUR BEST IS BEAUTIFUL and worthy and should be celebrated even with its imperfections !

Isn't that's our mission?
Inclusuon and access to ALL artists?
Accepting their imperfections?

So NExt time we will get the spelling right...

Well I considered that ad a success as there were 30 something people in attendance of the reading of a new play written by a disabled young adult.

But I was booted as Marketing Director.

All this to say... I really DO NOT, and have never really enjoyed marketing writing. I wish to focus my time on getting lost in creative writing. Getting lost in essay writing. Getting lost in the flow of enjoying the process of working at writing so much that I start writing and realize only after looking up at the clock that five hours just went by and I should probably stop to eat. That happens when I journal, or am working on drafting a proposal or contract sometimes, or researching a legal issue. That never has happened with the marketing work whether it was promotional writing , or web site content drafting and editing, or frankly even journalistic writing of articles I was paid for. I have been published over a dozen times and each magazine article was a painful labor before it was birthed. I stopped freelancing ( or rather did not continue) when I realized the articles for the last publication, a gardening magazine, were agonizing for me to create. I was so stressed over the writing of them! There was no joy, no ease, nothing short of anxiety and stress and it was hard! I agonized for days after doing research then agonized over the writing all darn day the day I wrote that final article. Then after it was published I never even saw the darn thing! It was solicited by the editor months in advance of publication and months after I sent it off only knew the story recently hit print as a $200 check arrived in the mail. It took a while before I realized what the heck the check was issued for, as the publishing company is not the same entity as the trade name of the magazine! I realized I did not have to put myself through that pain. I know I can write.I have been published so don't need the validation. I didn't need that much stress for $200 as YES I KNOW I CAN WRITE however, That DOES NOT MAKE IT EASY! It is just too much work and emotional stress for too little return when I can be paid so much more for kegal writing. A recent email came from board asking if anyone wants to run a marketing campaign for Give Choose for us. Now is time to create and plan campaign for months from now... come up with team, theme, copy, etc...

I hope they did not mean giving Tue which was just last week or the week before? ..

Lol as If so, they clearly haven't paid ANY attention to what I said and did a few years ago! You don't just ask for someone to handle a giving campaign just weeks before it, totally last minute! I realize when I was Marketing Director, even if I did not have a printed report I DID communicate and was, I now realize, simply ignored for some reason. Not at first... but not sure when and why there was an erosion of respect for me .(We are all volunteers keep in mind, perhaps not really personal?) I don't know, it felt personal.

I have been taking a couple weeks to decide if I have energy to jump in with that ask.

I am just not feeling motivated and the excitement is gone.

I need to run my own marketing campaign and develop me own brand. I need to be my own rainmaker...

Yeah. This writing helped me decide.

I have been there and have done it.

My efforts were not apprechiated. I will help out other ways. I do like to go help set up and clean up for the events. I love breaking down the sets and sweeping the floor after a show. I will be happy to show up and encourage the visual artists in class and go to their art openings to celebrate with them. I will help clean a costume storage space. I will continue to try to guide business choices for the time being as events are on hold during the coronavirus crisis. But I have other things to spend my time on, such as investing in myself. My art dates My guitar lessons and practice My writing master classes And incubation time to just BE so ideas can develop.

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