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Keep on Keepin' Creative

If you’re like me, the extended self-isolation – complete with working from home, being unable to just “get out” or see friends – is starting to take its toll. I was never an exceptionally adventurous person or even a social butterfly, but now that I can’t go out, I’m suddenly craving the ability to. Frustrating, right?

Of course, I’m not totally alone during this time. I’ve got my family around me, and I’m beyond thankful that we all get along. We have done puzzles, watched TV and movies, and baked a few desserts. Sure, my siblings have online classes while my father and I work remotely, but we’ve been able to spend more time together.

Like I said, however, the lack of freedom and somewhat circular routine is starting to take its toll. Particularly when it comes to reading and writing my third book. At first that didn’t seem right. I’m stuck at home, so why wouldn’t escaping into other stories bring me some relief? I haven’t discovered the reason for this quite yet, but perhaps it’s because that’s my only window out of reality and I don’t want to exhaust it. Or maybe it’s that I’m too ingrained and stressed by the present to let myself escape into fiction.

Either way, it sucks, and I’m feeling seriously un-creative.

So, what am I doing to combat this creative lethargy? I’m channeling it elsewhere.

When I was writing Remade, I hit writer’s block for about a month. I couldn’t get a word out on my story, but I came up with a different story idea and ran with that for a bit. Possessed mannequins couldn’t be further from my sci-fi story, and it actually was a lot of fun to write. I recently returned to that story since I never finished it, and surprisingly, words raced off the tip of my pen. It might not be the story I feel I should be writing right now, but it’s still putting words on paper for a story I fully intend to eventually finish. And, writing something this creepy is kinda fun.

Remember those string friendship bracelets from a handful of years ago? Oh yeah, I’m going to start one of those soon. I’ve been searching for a pattern that resembles my Remade logo – specifically the circuits – and I think I finally have a design that works. Will I have to reteach myself the right knots to make this? Yes, but I’m really looking forward to it.

I’m also trying to learn new ways of being creative. I downloaded Photoshop onto my laptop and am in the process of teaching myself how to create and edit photos. Hopefully down the line this will lead to some awesome book covers – and it’s a great skill to put on my resume! (If you have tips or great tutorial videos, let me know!)

This certainly isn’t the year we thought we’d have, and I know I’m not the only one feeling low and unmotivated. Until this is all over, don’t let your creative spark die! Channel your creativity into other outlets and let it shine there – through creating art, writing other works, or even learning a TikTok dance. Just keep on keepin’ creative.

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