This month on The Gift of Writing I’m exploring the challenges – and offering solutions – for keeping your creative flame lit, even when life, inevitably, gets in the way.
I was inspired by a quote from the classic book, Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estés. This book cracked open my creative life when I discovered it last year, and I return to it often, thumbing through the many dog-eared and highlighted pages.
Here is an extended version of the passage I quoted in my essay:
“Most of us would do better if we became more adept at watching the fire under our work… Too often we turn away from the pot, from the oven. We forget to watch, forget to add fuel, forget to stir. We mistakenly think the fire and the cooking are like one of those feisty houseplants that can go without water for eight months before the poor thing keels over.
It is not so. The fire bears, requires, watching, for it is easy to let the flame go out…
Without the fire, our great ideas, our original thoughts, our yearnings and longings remain uncooked, and everyone is unfulfilled.”
I have this quote prominently displayed on my writing bulletin board as a reminder, a warning, because I’ve let my flame go out before, more than once.
Read about my loss of fire on The Gift of Writing and how, over the years, I’ve come up with several practical ways to keep the creative coals hot no matter what else is going on in your life.
Hope to see you there!