Working through The Artist’s Way

I’m already on week 4 of working through the creativity course The Artist’s Way. I had grand plans of giving weekly updates as I worked through it, but somehow it’s never seemed to work for me to get the darn thing written on a Tuesday night or Wednesday morning (and clearly it didn’t work for me this week, either). Every week, I’d find myself super excited to write about it and then suddenly Wednesday was gone and I’d be so annoyed, I wouldn’t write it. Have you ever had that?

However, this week, I decided no more excuses. If a usually-Wednesday post goes up on a Thursday, that’s just going to have to be okay.

A friend of mine recommended Artist’s Way to me months ago, and I bought it right away, but it ended up sitting on a shelf because it was never quite the right time to start. But, as these things go, it’s never GOING to be the right time to start, one just needs to decide to do it already.

So, at the beginning of September, for no reason in particular, I finally pulled it off the shelf and began working through it.

If you’ve never heard of it before, The Artist’s Way is a course that focuses on self-awareness mostly through the use of Morning Pages, three pages of long-hand every day, and working through some exercises, specifically the Artist’s Date.

When I started this, I took myself on a three-hour hike alone to celebrate having started. Then I got sick for a week or so with a plague and I missed my next planned Artist’s Date, which was to drive to close to where I’d left off before and hike another few hours down the trail, but alas, I was nearly dead will illness. I faithfully worked my Morning Pages and gained some clarity about my issues with social media and where I think I can improve on what I’m doing (hint: simplicity).

Week 2’s Artist’s Date was my writer’s conference. I went to a children’s lit writer’s conference (which I clearly should have talked about here as well, but life was a bit much at the time) and it was fantastic. I learned all sorts of wonderful about writing children’s books. I continued to write my Morning Pages faithfully, but also realized I actually needed to wake up earlier to get them done, so I set my alarm for the recommended 30 minutes earlier in order to do those and it’s mostly working. I might have to go for even earlier if I want to finish them before I need to start making breakfast for everyone.

Week 3 saw me solo parenting, so my Artist’s Date consisted of me gaming alone. No grouping with people, nothing. Just me doing whatever I wanted to do however I wanted to do it. I found this to be absolutely fulfilling and have enjoyed more solo gaming in the days since.

And now, Week 4. So far, I have no Artist Date planned. I may finally take myself for that extra hike, maybe on Sunday. I’ve done some extra thinking about my Author Internet presence and I think I have even more clarity there and need to start actually writing down thoughts, ideas, and plans. I also think I’m solidifying my thoughts for 2020 goals and how I want to achieve them.

This week also has a Reading Deprivation challenge, which I’ve expanded to also include social media. Yes, for seven days, I will not read books for pleasure or be on social media for time wasting (I’ve had to log in for messaging communication, but I’ve NOT strayed into scrolling anything – yay me – I’ve been going since Monday). The point of the deprivation is to allow ourselves to hear ourselves better and in order to hear better, we need a bit of silence (unlike right now where my four year old is singing “Everybody Clean Up” at the top of his lungs – not so quiet).

Yesterday was actually the hardest day so far because I was the most tired and wanted to disappear into a book or the internet for a while and zone. However, since those were not options, I actually worked on my crochet basket for dog toys. It’s nearly complete, I think it just needs a few more rows. And then, I really focused in on my kids a bit (which there has been PLENTY of that anyway this last week). Today, I think I feel better for having worked on the basket rather than zoning on the internet.

So far, I have been finding The Artist’s Way to be a useful tool for me to explore some things I may not have explored simply because I’m forced to write so much every morning. Sometimes I “waste” the pages talking about gaming or being tired, but other times, I work through some really profound things. I may actually end up keeping the Morning Pages habit after I finish the course because it really has been surprisingly useful and helpful.

From here on out, I DO plan to share about my progress with The Artist’s Way, picking out things I’m gleaning and learning, how I’m applying them, and maybe even share some of what the future may look like. Once I’ve rooted it out, of course.

So, until then, happy reading and writing and living.

PS. that is the picture of my crochet basket full of dog toys. Still needs to be a bit taller, otherwise I love it.