The Flow of Creativity

Over the past few weeks I’ve been receiving emails from someone who offered me a free book (which I said yes to and received in 2 days). I have since unsubscribed to this person’s list. I have not had time to read said book. This person’s book shot up to number 1 on Amazon within days! Well, all because he offered free books to gullible folks like me, then others saw the book was #1, though hey this book must be amazing, so they purchased the book. I am not a fan of “pyramid schemes”, but I believe that is exactly what this author did in creating a base of fans by offering free books, then adding more fans by selling more books, then offering a video “free”, then selling it, and so on and so on. After the 4th email I felt as if the author had caught me up in a race that I really did not want to run, so of course I unsubscribed. The concept is all about numbers. Exponentially expanding your fan base and followers. It is too “Rah Rah” for me.
Initially I was interested because I have started a business and of course I want followers and a fan base. But I hope to gain friends as well. And I hope to get them by a gentle flow of waves lapping at the beach instead of a whirlwind hurricane approach.
Creativity is like that. I cannot be in creative mode always thinking about outcomes and followers and such. I want to create something useful, something fun, and something that I like and then hope a few other people like to too. I must tell my own story, and the audience for that may be very limited. I cannot create for the masses riding the waves on a surfboard at a frantic pace. I can only create for those enjoying the flow of the waves, the sunshine on the shore.
When you create, be it by writing, painting or such –
… how much of your brain is occupied by “outcomes” – sales, followers, fans, pleasing the masses?
… how much is occupied by pleasing yourself, the heart, the soul?
… how much is occupied by what works for you, and not so much thinking about pleasing someone else?
… how much is occupied by merely¬†telling your own story?


One response to “The Flow of Creativity

  1. I come across a lot of discussion on the numbers game in social media. Terms such as “depth” and “breadth” of engagement nuance the meaning fo the number of likes. My personal take is that some broad shotgun approaches are of occasional value in reaching new audiences, but I tend to really think that the slow but consistent building of a base is where the action is at for all of us reasonably normal folks.

    I recollect a scheme like you mentioned with a band, where you had to keep going back to get another free download – well, the fact is, I never really liked the music! Ditto free “how-to” downloads to get one on a mailing list. I find that the real value of the download speaks to the likelihood I will continue even considering maintaining the relationship, obviously.

    So I am certain that the process you describe is great, if you have a true product to back something up. But then I also think of how John Grisham started out by selling books out of the trunk of his car . . .

    Liked by 1 person

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