Monday, November 29, 2010

New Experiences, New Ideas

My kids love watching the Imagination Movers, a show on Playhouse Disney. Four guys (Dave, Rich, Scott and Smitty) work at the Idea Warehouse and help people solve their various problems. They stress creative thinking, brainstorming and seeing things in a different way. Their music is a mix of rock and other genres, with catchy tunes to keep you dancing.

One particular episode caught my attention. "Out of Tunes" involved a blues musician (New Orleans musician Chris Thomas King) who couldn't write any new songs for his upcoming CD. The Movers' solutions included getting your mind primed by asking 'what if?' and being physically active through exercise. Great ideas (sound mind, sound body), but in this case, it didn't help their client. So what was the root problem?

It turned out he wrote about the same subjects all the time. Food, family...and he was convinced he'd exhausted all the possibilities. So the Movers introduced him to their Fairy Tale Room in their huge Idea Warehouse and the rock climbing in the Rock Climbing Room. Armed with new things to write about, he was able to write brand new songs for his CD.

I know how the guy feels. Is my Idea Well running dry? Could it be there isn't anything else I can write about? My hands hurt seven days out of seven, and typing on a keyboard made them stiffer and even more painful. Or maybe...

I needed to shake up my usual schedule.

We visited my sister for Thanksgiving, and we wandered through new malls,and visited a favorite used bookstore. On our way home, we drove through all kinds of scenery: cotton fields, a paper mill, truck stops, antique shops and peanut stores. I drew sketches, scribbled story notes and ate all sorts of food from the Thanksgiving table.  In the process, I was refilling the Well.

Now I'm back home in Charlotte and the Muse is busy simmering Ideas in her pressure cooker. And the words are flowing again.

All original writing and art copyright A. Dameron 2000-2010

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