I wrote another column today for The Diamondback. It took about an hour to get started and then thirty minutes to actually write the thing. I really wish my creative process was more organized or planned — or perhaps that is inimical to its very nature.
All I know is that my creative process is as random and unorganized as is neurologically possible. I just sit in front of a computer and thrash over different topics in my mind. If, at any point, I get stuck and can’t keep making progress on thinking of something new, I’ll bring up any of the dozens of constantly-updated websites in my bookmarks list (Digg, Fark, Slashdot, blogs, etc.) and browse for a little while until I have something new to think about.
Somehow, I’m able to tie all of these disparate topics together into a coherent train of thought, usually on a dfiferent, unrelated subject. For instance, I ended up writing my column about encouraging undergraduate research. That didn’t come up in anything I was looking at on Fark, of course, but that’s where my brain took me nonetheless. I really cannot explain it.
Somehow this creative process works for me. Despite being terrible unpredictable and random, it always inevitably ends up taking me somewhere. And I suppose that’s good enough. I don’t suffer from writer’s block, I suffer from brainstormer’s block. But once I finally get that kernel of an idea, I’m good to go. The actual idea generation process is rather agonizing, though, and after two hours with nothing to show for them, I do start feeling very aggravated and end up needing to take my mind off of it by doing something else.