In a TED talk, Mathew Blanchfield makes the claim that original, creative thinkers are procrastinators. And worriers. And self-doubters.
If he’s right, I’m golden.
He also said creative people have a lot of bad ideas, but because they procrastinate, the best ideas rise to the top.
I have a friend who picks on me about how long it takes me to write a book, and that all those half-written novels aren’t really stories I care about. I take the ribbing in stride though, because I’ll often have a story idea I’m not ready to write yet or at least not fully. Because I take so long, often requiring some event or inspiration to spur me on, the story is better. If I wrote it in a rush, it wouldn’t be the same story and I suspect not as good.
That doesn’t mean if you’re the blurt-and-finish type that you’re doing it wrong. We each have our method that serves us.
I’ve imagined my method is about stoking and exhausting the fire, then recovering and stoking it again. If I were a runner, which I’m not, I’m sure I’d run for a while, then walk for a while, then jog, then amble. That’s who I am. I like to sleep on things, and I don’t start until I have a grasp of how to handle it.
Inspired by my Colorado trip, I wrote the prologue of a new novel, and while I know what has to happen to introduce my main character, the specifics aren’t there yet. I could force it. Bribe it. Take a wild stab. Or, I can wait for it. As a generally busy person, that’s easy to do.
I do vary from Matt’s description. When I write something, I don’t doubt myself. That comes before, not after. It’s a failing, because I should be more open to rewriting (which I do, but it isn’t easy for me).
What about you? Does this describe you? I assume if you’re reading my blog that you’re creative. Give us a peak into your method, process, or way of accidently doing it.
Does the idea of procrastination as a hallmark of creativity resonate with you, or do you reject it?
Leave your comments below.