ICYMI: A Collection of Creativity Clips

An image from my 2010 cross-country road trip and a caption from Committed I didn't share on Melissa Crytzer Fry's What I Saw blog, from Mormon Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah: "I learn that when the first Mormon settlers arrived here in Utah in 1848--the only place left the four thousand or so believers could find to live where no one was constantly trying to kill them--their first year's crops fell under attack from a scourge of crickets of Old Testament proportions. Then, out of the sky as clear as the one above us, salvation arrived in the form of cricket-devouring seagulls. 'We call it the Miracle of the Gulls,' the shorter one says through teeth even more stunning. It would have been far simpler for God not to have sent the crickets in the first place, but I still like the story."

An image from my 2010 cross-country road trip and an excerpt from Committed: A Memoir of the Artist’s Road I didn’t share on Melissa Crytzer Fry’s What I Saw blog, from the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City, Utah: “I learn that when the first Mormon settlers arrived here in Utah in 1848–the only place left the four thousand or so believers could find to live where no one was constantly trying to kill them–their first year’s crops fell under attack from a scourge of crickets of Old Testament proportions. Then, out of the sky as clear as the one above us, salvation arrived in the form of cricket-devouring seagulls. ‘We call it the Miracle of the Gulls,’ the shorter one says. It would have been far simpler for God not to have sent the crickets in the first place, but I still like the story.”

Looking for a little creativity recharge as 2014 winds to a close? Not looking to have to open that pocketbook one more time this holiday season? Please enjoy this collection of creativity and creative-craft posts I have written for others during my blog tour for Committed: A Memoir of the Artist’s Road.

  • Let’s learn from creatives: Committed features interviews with dozens of artists of every type, from musicians to visual artists to writers. I shared five lessons I learned on the creative process from them with The Loft Literary Center’s Writer’s Block blog.
  • But how much should they actually be saying? Fitting dozens of interviews into a tightly written memoir requires making choices; I shared what I learned about crafting dialogue with with readers of K.M. Weiland’s Helping Writers Become Authors.
  • That sounds like you’re talking about fiction: Dialogue joined by plot and character development; yup, I wrote Committed to read like a novel, as I explained to readers of Cynthia Robertson’s blog.
  • But does that mean you’re being true to your art? Yes, but it wasn’t always easy. I described on the blog of Elizabeth Spann Craig the process I found myself on to be true to the story Committed wanted to tell.
  • That can require some difficult choices: The hardest part of being true to my art with Committed was writing about others in my life, a dilemma I described in another post with The Loft Literary Center’s Writer’s Block blog.
  • So you have to tell your story: To come full circle, that was one of the lessons I learned from creatives interviewed in Committed, and that guidestar helped me write a novelistic memoir that is true to my story. I shared that in an interview with creativity guru Melanie Sklarz.
  • But you might have to get up at 5 am: That’s what I did most mornings in writing Committed, one of the answers I gave in an interview with novelist Sheila R. Lamb.
  • And was it all worth it? Committed ends with an epiphany, but there is no afterward section telling us what came next for the narrator. (Readers will know the very act of holding the narrator’s published memoir gives some of it away!) I talk a bit about what came next in an interview with novelist Charlotte Rains Dixon.
  • But it was fun, right? The blog tour had a couple of more whimsical stops, such as a slide show of images from the road-trip paired with excerpts from Committed on Melissa Crytzer Fry’s blog, and a visit to the basement where I wrote Committed in a Decorative Writer post for Annie Neugebauer.

I have a few more blog-tour stops scheduled in January, and I’m also crafting a three-part series on what I learned in writing Committed about using extended metaphors. (None are present in this post.) Until then, have a happy holidays and a great start to 2015!

About Patrick Ross

I'm the author of Committed: A Memoir of the Artist's Road.

5 Responses to “ICYMI: A Collection of Creativity Clips”

  1. Have another great creative year, Patrick!

  2. This has all been fun to follow, Patrick🙂 I hope sales are going well!

  3. Yaay! A collection of links to your guest blog posts, all on one handy page. The perfect Christmas present, Patrick, thank you.🙂 I finished ‘Committed’ just recently and loved it – it has been Goodreaded accordingly. (can I verb that? I’m sure I wouldn’t be the first…) If the feedback there is anything to go by, I think you’re going to have a bit of a hit on your hands!

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