I've had the pleasure of working on a new project over the past few days, and my brain is buzzing with lots of anecdotes. I'm collaborating with a Canadian writer and performer named Jenny Macdonald on her new one-woman show, Enthroned, set to premiere in Dublin's First Fortnight Festival in January 2016.
We've been in the studio together over the last five days, refining the second half of the play through new writing and then workshopping various sections. Our time together reaffirmed many things for me as an artist and a collaborator, and then one of the most important takeaways came from Jenny after one of our sessions. We were talking about the creative process, the challenges of writing, the difficulties of "knowing" the state of a project when we're right in the middle of it all. Then Jenny said the following:
Creativity is not something you do; it's something that you let come through you.
Can it be that easy? Uh huh. It can. "Doing" often prevents me from discovering, because I'm too busy to notice what's really right in front of my face.
Loosen the grip. Stop forcing it. Let it come through me.
This relates to last week's musing about equal distribution of weight and not leaning forward. Maybe not having to try so hard. Let it come through me. Let it present itself. Let it emerge when it's ready. What a concept...
Jenny shared that nugget and many other pieces of wisdom during our work together these past few days. A pleasure and a privilege to collaborate with her on finding the creative path to a new piece of writing while embracing the notion that it's not about finishing. Rather, it's about finding the next stopping place for a share out to those that gather to see.