The compulsion to create is strong in some people. Whether it's to be an artist, a writer, a poet, an engineer, or whatever. Something inside us innately wants to create and then share that creation with the world. Few people, however, actually act upon the urges to take an idea and see it through to completion. If you're like me, you have to fight the desire to a) talk about your idea so long that you waste all your energy on that and never get the darn things beyond the inception form or b) show it to the world before it's ready, before it's the best that it can be. Both of these end up damning the project from ever reaching its potential to become something beautiful.
I'm like this with art and with writing for sure.
Here are two examples:
1. I love to create mosaic tables. But they are time intensive and sometimes they don't get finished. One particularly large table has been sitting in my garage incomplete for FIVE years. (Good grief, has it really been that long?!) I call it the Tree of Life (cliche, I know):
2. I lost my steam on a particular beloved novel because I showed friends and critique partners too early. Sixty pages in I lost the voice of the story and had to set it aside. Here are the first three (rough) paragraphs on that book. (It's an amalgamation of several Lithuanian folktales and I call it Cottage by the Sea):
She was called dukte, daughter dearest, while her parents were still alive. Rarely did they call her Dalia, her given name. Mother and father, their smiles were ever on her, the flush of love and glitter of fondness in their cheeks and gracing their eyes. If her father was not smiling at his precious and only child with his mouth, the wrinkles around his eyes were not far from obliging. It could not be helped, who else had a daughter of red-gold hair and eyes the color of the sea? She was a jewel, a rare piece of amber, and if left to herself, would polish and glow into something grand, he was sure. He was a merchant, after all, and knew a good product when he saw one.
And so the indulged daughter was left to her seven year old self, to roam the nearby woods and gardens of their household, coming home with torn skirts and unplaited hair more than not. Still they would smile upon her disheveled frame. Then one day the smiles faded and her mother became confined to her bed. Dark shadows inhabited her father’s once-glittering eyes and the lines of laughter turned to ones of worry. Servants whispered in hushed tones, healers were called in, experts in blood-letting and the humors. Totems and songs to ward off doom were cast about in hopes of driving out evil spirits from the household.
And the smiles that once graced the child were no more. She found herself alone, unheeded, and haunting a soulless house. Often her wanderings would lead her to wait in the darkened steps below her mother’s room, a place where she could hear the murmur of the adult’s voices unnoticed.
So my questions to you are:
1. Do you leave great ideas unfinished, some never to come to fruition? If so, why?
2. What creations (other than writing, if you're a writer) do you like to make? (And I didn't ask about PROcreations, so don't list those. Get your heads out of the gutter, people. Ha, ha.)