The Loss of Creativity

I’ve spent the majority of the last fortnight in a horrible place where I couldn’t even function with the world properly, let alone function in a suitable way with myself in order to be creative. I cried, a lot. I over-analysed everything and I spent most of my time in a fuzzy daze that I couldn’t even understand.

I shall blame that for my failure to blog because for the most part, I’ve done little by way of my writing/reading resolutions. But that’s okay, it’s one fortnight out of a lifetime, so now I can only write for a maximum of fifty weeks this year, that’s okay too.

Now to look at ways to draw creativity back out of me.

Musical Bunnies

Plot bunnies love to multiply. Let’s face it; bunnies generally love to multiply…apparently. Is there any proof of this? I suppose there must be, or else the phrases to do with rabbits and sex wouldn’t exist.

For anyone not familiar with plot bunnies (probably everyone outside of the fanfiction world), a plot bunny is:

“An idea for a story (usually used to refer to fanfic) that gnaws at the brain until written.”Urban Dictionary

Now as a long-time fanfiction writer, I’ve had many cases of plot bunnies biting me on the backside and gnawing all the way through my body until I give them some attention. I get ideas from everywhere, from the bathroom to television.

A popular source of plot bunnies is music, whom I shall dub musical bunnies.

Have you ever listened to a song and really related to it?

When I listen to a song and feel my relating bubbling, it’s not usually bubbling up with feelings about me (sometimes it is, but not always). In fact there are probably more times in the last few years where I have though ‘that would make a good story’ than ‘that fits my personality well’.

An example of my most annoying musical bunny is a song called ‘Woman‘ by Delta Goodrem. It’s got a powerful build and lyrics that really speak to me. I first listened to the song in about 2008, the year I bought two copies (a copy from Australia and one from America) of the album it was on, without listening to either for months (I was waiting for the album to come out here – subsequently never did).

I’m not sure why the musical bunnies in ‘Woman’ eat away at me so much, but from day one they’ve screamed at me to write. In fact, most times I listen to it; my first thought is ‘I NEED to write something to this’. Up until now, putting pen to paper has been unsuccessful.

Why are these bunnies being particularly frustrating? Who knows?

Unfortunately, I’ve come across another song that perhaps has as much musical bunny power as ‘Woman‘. It’s a song by Amy Macdonald called ‘Love Love’. There’s something there, something alluring that makes me want to write until I can write no more.

One day I will write something for both of these songs, whether that day is today or not we’re yet to find out.

This is a story about…

Have you ever commentated a race?

I have.

It wasn’t at a sports facility, commentating a group of people on a race track, nor was it on the radio or television or for a local organisation.

I commentated the race between a girl and a train. I commentated my morning commute.

You might question my motives behind the exciting story of one girl’s journey from bus to train in the hope of catching the earliest possible piece of transport.

I didn’t have any motives, I just thought it would be fun.

And my followers on Twitter were given a more exciting version of my travels than ‘stood at train station. It’s cold‘ which is what I normally tweet. I asked for bets on whether I would make the train and whilst I got no response, when I’ve done this in the past, my followers have always been happy to comply.

I don’t know how many people followed my pursuit, or even cared. But it was an exciting experiment.

I wonder what it would be like to commentated a whole day of your life. To act as though each and every action is an exciting moment. They have those animal shows on television where the presenter talks in that excited voice they have about a cheetah running and catching its prey. Perhaps more exciting than my walk to the kitchen or playful scuffle with the cat.

It reminds me in many ways of ‘Stranger Than Fiction‘. Have you seen it? If not, I recommend it. It’s basically a film about a  man’s life with a voice-over.

This is a story about a man named Harold Crick and his wristwatch. Harold Crick was a man of infinite numbers, endless calculations, and remarkably few words. And his wristwatch said even less. Every weekday, for twelve years, Harold would brush each of his thirty-two teeth seventy-six times.

And so the commentating of life resembles this somewhat, but instead of talking about the mundane actions in life in a mundane way. You could make it the most exciting thing in the world.

I plan to try this again…perhaps a whole day of commentating my life.

Here’s this mornings example:
It’s touch and go. Pegs and the train are neck and neck. But the train has a clear run. Can Pegs make it through the ticket office and get to platform 4? The ticket office appears to be empty. This is good news for Pegs who is almost there, but so is the train! Pegs has been held up by an awkward £10 note & a crowd of arriving passengers. Are they from platform 4? They are. If Pegs doesn’t run, she’s gonna miss her train. And oh my God, I can’t believe it, Pegs reaches the  platform as the train pulls away from the station. It’s 1-0 to the train. This is a sad day for Pegs. Had she had her money in her hand ahead of time, she would have made it, but her tweeting slowed her down.

I could have any job? I already have it.

If I could have any job in the world I would be a rhinoceros running through the grasses of Tanzania, or maybe a superhero, flying through the sky above a bright city rescuing strangers from minor crimes.

No, I wouldn’t.

My dream job isn’t weird, or ‘wonderful’, or glorious or adventurous. It is what it is.

I work for an anti-bullying charity on a part time basis and other than the odd ‘is there anything I actually have on my list that can be done today?’ moments, I love it. I love the organisation, I love working with the children and young people who come here.

Bully Free Zone saved my life; not literally (I wasn’t at risk of suicide), but without them I wouldn’t have the quality of life I have built up.

This has been the job I wanted for years and I have it.

What you don’t know, however, is that my lovely, small, local charity that has been my life for so long, is at the risk of closing. We’re £50, 000 short of keeping going for 12 months. It’s not just us, the financial climate is poor and the voluntary sector is struggling. But it hurts, it physically hurts (if I let myself think about it), that a place that helped me become me is probably not going to be here anymore. Come March there will be no volunteers, there will be only one member of staff and a laptop trying to help these children who have suffered from the effects of bullying.

It’s sad and as much as we try and find funding, there’s not a lot else we can do. It might work out, it might not. I keep hoping for some kind of miracle. Yet, in reality, it’s not a television show, £50, 000 won’t come flying in on the day before we’re due to close saving us from ending the work of this fantastic organisation.

So yeah, my dream job is here, it’s what I do…and it’s about to be ripped away from me.

Maybe my new dream job should be finding some way to become filthy rich, if only to fund this life saving organisation.