“Your creative work is not your baby; if anything, you are its baby”
Elizabeth Gilbert (Big Magic, Creative Living Beyond Fear)
You might remember Elizabeth Gilbert from the famous book “Eat, Pray and Love”. It was one of the bestsellers and rightly so. Talking about Big Magic, this book came as a recommendation in one of the book recommendation threads on Twitter. I took the plunge, totally because I had loved “Eat, Pray and Love”.
The book revolves around the creative process and creative living. If you are, someone who has even the feeblest link with any creative work you will relate to this book at various levels. Moreover, even if you don’t you might just realize that to live your life creatively you don’t necessarily have to do something creative. The way you lead your life, the way you plan around your most mundane jobs also makes or breaks the creativity inside you. She even clearly mentions in the book
“If you’re alive, you’re a creative person.”
The book talks about the creative process and the intricate aspects of creativity that is often perceived in a completely wrong manner. I could relate to almost all the points emphasized around the path of creativity. My two most important and hard-hitting discoveries are as under:
- “But to yell at your creativity, saying, “You must earn money for me!” is sort of like yelling at a cat; it has no idea what you’re talking about, and all you’re doing is scaring it away, because you’re making really loud noises and your face looks weird when you do that.” This is to all the people who start something with the intention of making money and not because they enjoy the creative process of it. Be it blogging or YouTube the first question that is on everybody’s top of the head is how soon we can make money out of it. You should never start something with the intent of making money. With time and with your consistent efforts (because your heart and soul is in it) money will make its own way.
- “Your creative work is not your baby; if anything, you are its baby”. This fact was a big reveal for me. There have been so many instances when I have called my blog as my baby but it was after reading this book I realized its actually the vice versa. Read the book to know exactly why this is the case, trust me you will be convinced in no time.
While I liked the book but it comes with its own set of flaws.
I didn’t quite agree with the part where Creativity is defined as a type of religion. Religion doesn’t seem to be a right word here. Also throughout the book, Elisabeth refers to many of her famous friends and proceeds with the story by explaining their creative journey. It seems organic in the beginning but after a point, it became trite and repetitive.
The above flaws are minuscule as compared to the creative wisdom that the book has imparted in me. Every time I am creatively distracted I just pick this book and randomly read any chapter. The chapters aren’t dependent on each other so any randomly selected would make all the sense in the world. It basically gives you what you are seeking in the creative world. I recommend this book to everyone irrespective of your field or work.
I am going with 4/5.
The photographs are copywriters property. Reproduction of any of the contents, including the photographs without prior consent/permission of the writer, will attract legal action.