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Or how labels don’t fit

A non-techy friend asked me the other day about setting up a blog. I said for her purposes a substack would probably be better than setting up a whole website, but I didn’t know a heap about the backend. So what did I do? Set one up for myself.

“You used to blog a lot,” she said. “And I used to love reading it.”

The more I thought about it, the more I realised the substack approach would probably suit me better than the website I set up and then let languish. It’ll also be easier to reach you, that handful of engaged readers, rather than announcing posts on social media all the time and hoping anyone is interested enough to click through.

So I’m moving over here for reals and endeavouring to build up a regular writing schedule again.

A bit about me

If you have known me for any length of time, you’ll know what to expect. But if you’ve just stumbled across me, you might wonder who I am and what this is all about.

I often wonder what it would be like to be someone who knew what they wanted to do or be from childhood. If I had to pick one thing, I would have said “author”. But then what about the music? And the art? And the acting? And…

Part of the thing that I have grappled with my entire life is being what was, for a while, called a ‘multipassionate’. But that term has never really sat well with me, not even when you add ‘creative’ in front of it. Too buzz-wordy. Polymath didn’t seem right either. Renaissance (wo)man? What does that even mean?

So the focus of this newsletter/substack/journal/howling into the void will be on creativity in all its forms as I try to find a definition for who I am as a creative (even ‘creative’ is a weird label, and I’ve never really felt comfortable using it as a noun instead of an adjective, but here we are). I suspect the answer is that I will never find a suitable definition, but there will be fun and a lot of things created in the process!

There will be reflections on my creative processes, snippets of my writing and art, ramblings about what it means to be a creative person in a capitalist society, all of that. I will include bits of inspiration and advice I’ve found useful.

But wait – plot twist!

Not only do I have unquenchable creative interests, I also have a couple of chronic health conditions. The main one that affects my creative practice in every form is myalgic encephalomyelitis, or what’s more commonly known as chronic fatigue syndrome (hereafter abbreviated to ME/CFS). So it’s likely I’ll be writing about that and how it affects creativity and the things I can participate in.

What’s coming up?

  • As we get closer to November, I’ve decided to participate in NaNoWriMo again (last time was 2016!), so in the first instance, there will probably be a lot of stuff about the novel I’m writing.

  • But I’m also getting deep into printmaking. So there will be that.

  • And I’m also preparing for a performance of a bunch of cute Japanese music with my flute gang at the end of October, so there’s that too.

And…whatever other shiny creativity baubles catch my eye.

You have been warned. And welcome!

Bec

An overhead view of a printmaking workstation, with tools, inks and a print of a fish