We’re all aware of quotes such as, ‘What do you do with creative blocks? Build a Castle!’ by Sark, but if we’re truly stuck where do we even place the first block to start building?
About twenty-five years ago I bought the work-book, A Creative Companion - How to free your creative spirit, by Sark. It’s full of lots of great little exercises to try and kick-start your creative juices. I was rummaging through all my books in our storage area the other day (25 years after having purchased said book) to look for inspiration and dusted off this old favourite. I took it down into my office and started to read through what I had written all those years ago.
One of the exercises goes like this - ‘Use this page to write down a creative idea or dream you have’. I’d written:
Write a book
Perform street theatre
Dance behind a back-lit sheet like a shadow
Knit a new Christmas sweater
Learn to pole vault
I laughed so much when I read that last line - and wonder if it’s now too late, at 54, to fulfill my pole-vaulting dreams? I haven’t needed to knit a new Christmas sweater as my old one (now in its 33rd year) is still worn with pride from the 1st to 25th December every year. I have never performed street theatre and was surprised when I read that entry - it’s something I don’t ever remember wanting to do. I have danced a hell of a lot, but never behind a back-lit sheet, but that day may still come. I don’t live self-sufficiently and realise that I’ve kind of forgotten that fierce environmental side of me as the years have passed - though I do try to tread as lightly as I possibly can on our planet.
The one thing I have done from that list, however, is write a book. I self-published Spaghetti Head in March this year (2018). I could have followed any one of those dreams but I chose writing and I stuck to it.
Creative exercises like the one above are a great way to bounce ideas around and commit your dreams to the page. Sark has written many more creative books since that one, check out her website www.planetsark.com.
Or to truly kick-start yourself into writing that book you’ve always wanted to, join myself, Becky Slack and Helen Cross on one of our workshops in France - it will transform your writing dreams.
By Sarah Tyley’