Winter’s Creative Gift

image: pixabay

pixabay free images/ Anja Osenberg

The holidays come to a hectic close and my favorite time of year ambles in. Here is Oregon, if you gaze out the window at the January weather, you’ll find a misty, drippy, icy, foggy-soggy mess, at least through May. That gives me five whole months of lighter obligations and a complete lack of guilt for not “enjoying the weather.” In a climate boasting only three months of sunshine, the Vitamin D police are checking every household for us slackers.

For quite a few creative sorts, our pursuits get back-burnered by other more pressing responsibilities – jobs, violin lessons, soccer practice, staining the deck, grocery shopping, sorting socks…it’s amazing that anything in the world ever gets painted, composed, sculpted, or tapped out on the keyboard.

We, who aren’t independently wealthy or already famous, squeeze precious moments for inspiration from the cracks of our crowded lives. We hide in our cubbyholes, our converted attics, our bedrooms and garages. (Oh, I’ve written in the bathroom too). We rise before dawn with a steamy cup of coffee, kiss our lovers goodnight and stay up with the stars. A weekend alone isn’t a time for melancholy wishes; it’s a little taste of heaven with a neglected muse.

Creative time is sacred time, hours marked with inky conviction on the calendar that can’t be erased. As artists, we need to cultivate a belief in the importance of what we do, even when other duties jostle for our attention. We need to believe in the intrinsic value of our art, even when no paycheck arrives in the mail. We need to honor our creative calling and spirit of inspiration, even when the doubters tell us how nice it is we have a hobby to fill our free time!

In Oregon, the winter weather comes bearing the creative gift of unassigned hours. No matter where you live, dedicate a few empty squares of your calendar to nourish your creative soul and save the dates as you would for your child’s wedding. Be resolved.

95 thoughts on “Winter’s Creative Gift

  1. “unassigned hours” That is a luxury!
    Great post (especially with the storms moving in.)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hemangini says:

    beautiful painting and I love winter so much too!! I miss snow though 😦

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Ah that precious creative time. The only problem that I have is when I do get that time I sometimes waste it on procrastination.

    Like

  4. Sacha Black says:

    Beautiful painting did you do it?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wish! Oh, to be that talented. 🙂 I found it on pixabay and no author was referenced. It does go with the creativity theme, though. Thanks so the visit, Sacha. Today is my no computer day (oops, don’t tell) so I’ll be by to visit tomorrow. Shhh!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I never thought of soggy weather this way, and I wholeheartedly agree. In Ireland, the whole country goes cracked when the sun comes out. It’s a mass hysteria rivalled only by an international sporting win or the stampede for hidey-holes when a general election is looming. It’s no wonder everyone here is writing something. We don’t have the weather to do anything else. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. reocochran says:

    The painting was so beautiful and wish when they put them on places to use that they knew who created, places brush strokes upon paper or canvas, Diana. You found a beautiful picturesque scene to bless this great post. I used to like snow days when I taught or when I stayed home as a single mom and provided daycare from 5:00 am to 7:00 pm. The children were great, part of my family.
    I like cocooning, wrapping up and sipping a hot cocoa or coffee. Enjoy your resolve. Here’s mine. . .
    I am resolved to find the solution to the Gremlin or Ghost that has entered my inner sanctum of private, yet to be “aired,” posts and released them with scheduled dates as if said dates have arrived!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Juli Hoffman says:

    “Creative time is sacred time, hours marked with inky conviction on the calendar that can’t be erased.” I like that!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Isn’t it the worse when you have an inspiration and you know it is going to be hours before you can work on it? I get up really early so that I can write unmolested by conversation.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I lived in Portland for nearly a year and Seattle for several and I definitely get hit with the winter blues. For some reason I end up going through bursts of doing tons of artsy things in the winter followed by long periods of just being blah.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I hunker down in the cold dark days only emerging if the sun is strong enough to warm a small place on the back balcony. Without the garden and plants to look after and swimming, I tend to write my stories on the treadmill with my music on my head.. away from all other distractions.. it took me a while to find that space but treasure it now. Thanks Diana.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. dgkaye says:

    Such a great reminder in eloquent words. I especially loved, “We, who aren’t independently wealthy or already famous, squeeze precious moments for inspiration from the cracks of our crowded lives. ” Such truth. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Eliza Waters says:

    Thanks for this gentle encouragement. It is most appreciated!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. […] Continue reading: Winter’s Creative Gift | Myths of the Mirror […]

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Some of my best ideas for my writing have come on the toilet, I’ll have to give writing there a try! Let’s hope I don’t just get shitty ideas! *Slaps knee*

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Annika Perry says:

    What a beautiful inspiration anthem to our creative spirits, Diana. your writing is dreamy, magical as always and I feel I’m with you there in icy snowy Oregon. You are so right, we need to carve out time for our ‘creative souls’, give them their due. I love your line: ‘A weekend alone isn’t a time for melancholy wishes; it’s a little taste of heaven with a neglected muse.’

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s sad to me when creative urges aren’t valued as an important part of life. I think we are born creative. Then we grow up and other priorities take charge. I like believing that we can honor and nurture our creative selves in the midst of all life’s other plans 🙂 Happy writing, Annika!

      Liked by 1 person

  16. itsallbuki says:

    I love the writing style. Makes me yearn for more

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Sue Vincent says:

    I love the long darkness for writing, but then, the daylight at least keeps you awake 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Rosanna says:

    Beautifully written, as always, Diana. Three months of sunshine in a year? I could lend you some sunshine – here in the Philippines we often bring umbrellas during both the wet and dry season. During the wet season, umbrellas protect us from the rain. During summer, we use umbrellas as shields from the scorching heat of the sun.

    How amazingly different our worlds are!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Our sunshine months are a bit unpredictable in truth. July, August, and September are dry. June and October are up for grabs. I would definitely need an umbrella for the sun in your part of the world. Lovely to see you here, Rosanna. I hope your creative journey is unfolding beautifully ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Inspiring. You made me laugh. I thought I was the only person writing in the bathroom. Nice post.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. wow you are a true inspiration!!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Nurse Kelly says:

    Lovely, inspiring post, Diana. The cold weather does help with writing time, although personally, summer is my favorite time of the year. But the point you make about carving out time to honor our creative calling is so valid, no matter what the season is. Your words are so encouraging. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Kelly. Summers here are so short that they tend to get crammed with activities. I do like the warm weather, but I like the slowness of mid-winter. Yes, carve out the time to be creative. I think it’s our nature 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  22. ‘A weekend alone isn’t a time for melancholy wishes; it’s a little taste of heaven with a neglected muse.’
    So true. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. An inspiring post! You must be on the other side of the Cascades, as it’s nice and sunny in Central Oregon. (With snow on the ground. We’ve had a lot of snow this year.)

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Cat says:

    I love the winter and bad weather, an excuse to stay indoors and watch the rain lash against the windows… lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Carrie Rubin says:

    “As artists, we need to cultivate a belief in the importance of what we do”–Oh yes, how true. In fact, I could have copied and pasted your entire second to last paragraph. So well said. We really need to give ourselves permission to do this.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Permission to do it and see it as valuable, Carrie. Our civilization tends to equate value with money, and there are so many things that can’t be translated into dollars and cents. Creativity is one of them. Thanks for visiting! Have a great week – happy writing 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  26. Love the snowed in image you used here, Diana. It is a blessing when it happens. No excuses to be out and about. I’ve never written in the bathroom, but these days, the house is pretty quiet most of the time….and the imagination soars. Inspired post. ☺

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have to admit it’s been a while since I wrote in the bathroom, Van 🙂 That was mostly when editing, when I read aloud. It was hard to do when my husband was home with the TV on. Now I tend to retreat to the bedroom and shut the door if I’m going to talk to myself. Ha ha. Thanks so much for the visit. Happy writing!

      Liked by 1 person

  27. The V-Pub says:

    I found it interesting that you sometimes have written in the bathroom. Paul Simon said that he would go into his bathroom, shut the lights off, and write songs. It helped him with writer’s block. So, his first line in “Sounds of Silence” in which he writes “hello darkness, my old friend, it’s time to talk to you again” refers to his bathroom writing time.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I didn’t know that! I can see it though. Great acoustics too in there. Ha ha. Part of my process is to read my work aloud (for flow, to check dialog, etc). Sometimes the bathroom is the only place where I don’t get strange looks 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  28. babbitman says:

    I almost wish I was snowed in… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Judy Martin says:

    Oh how lovely this is Diana. I hope your creative soul stays well-nourished this winter 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Great post. I’m about to practise some inky conviction myself 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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