Friday, October 16, 2009

Too little time

It can be a curse to be creative. Take, for example, the Print & Pattern blog that fellow artist Karissa Chase recently shared on Facebook:

This blog is a delight to look at, but at the same time it gives me a crushing headache and the desire to hide under a piece of furniture. How can this be?

I'll tell you. I want to be able to take my art "out there" someday to the licensing world, and in particular this clean style of illustration (for lack of a better term....whatever IS it called, anyway) is something I don't know how to do. Something tells me it is done in Illustrator. Being self-taught and not having enough money to buy Illustrator, I am not yet up to speed on that program. Not to mention the time it would take.

And as I mentioned, I am trying to write.

And market my cat art as it exists in its current form, which is acrylic painted, primitive in style.

And mother, and homeschool, and once in a while wave a mop at my house in hopes that I can make it look a little less like the Munsters' home.

I am whining, I admit it. But I just don't know what to do. Sometimes it is easier just to blog and forget the whole thing. A nice online version of water-treading that gets me absolutely nowhere, not the slightest bit closer to my goals.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Pulled in too many directions

It may seem, at first glance, like things aren't that well in my creative life. After all, I have not blogged here in months! The truth is, I've been doing too much to blog.

Some time within the last month or so, I have decided to take my writing seriously. I've been writing personally for as long as I can remember, and have a trunk full of journals to prove it. But I recently became too fed up with sitting on the outside looking in for it to continue one more day.

It's one thing to suspect I probably should have been a writer, when all the writers I know of are strangers, far away. They are mere names at the library, or on the bookstore shelves, or sitting on Oprah's couch on a book tour, smiling blankly at me from book jackets. But it became altogether different when my friends and fellow moms revealed themselves to be writers. Real people--right at arm's length! Human beings! Mortals, juggling family responsibilities just like mine! Oh hell, I can do this, I thought. I ought to get in the game and stop stalling, stop waiting for that perfect world where someone's paying my bills for me and I have 8 hours each day in front of a sunny window, coffee cup in hand and cat in lap, before I start pushing myself to stretch. Not just to spill into a notebook, but to go back, to edit, to improve.

[Mind you, I don't do much of any of that in my blogging. Who has the time? I am lucky I get to speak here at all, but I digress.]

I just knew it was time, not only to work on my non-fiction essays, to polish them up and send them out for publication, but also to tackle the age-old question: why don't I ever write fiction? Personality-wise, and in the way I think and observe the world, I seem so much like so many writers out there--fiction writers. So the other day I bought a copy of The Writer's Digest Guide to Creativity, and started to try their fiction prompts. What fun! And I've also begun to take the advice of every writing book or article I've read thus far: read, read, read. This is where I have historically fallen flat, and could be why I have never been drawn to fiction.

Meanwhile, the daily responsibilities of my life continue: housewife, homeschooling mom, freelance blogging sometimes has to wait. It's worth it.