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Why I am Obsessed with Artists

“Patrick, why are you so obsessed with artists and their creativity?” I’ve been asked that question a fair amount during my years as an artist’s advocate and a creativity and writing instructor. There is no simple answer to that question, but if the top five answers were on the board, one of them likely would […]

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The Importance of Creativity in Education

For the last decade I have repeatedly emphasized a correlation between the encouragement of creativity in childhood and professional, personal and economic success later in life. I have done so here on this blog, and previously as a think tank senior fellow and artist’s rights advocate. I have not been alone in this belief. I […]

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Guest Post: Honoring Your Muse

Today I’m honored to provide a guest post by Lisa Hayes, a singer/songwriter extraordinaire. I’ll confess to a love of passionate and lively Americana roots music, and I love Lisa’s music. I’d describe Lisa as three parts Susan Tedeschi (before her music became a bit, at times, sappy) and two parts Grace Potter (before she […]

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MFA Nugget: Reading Your Work Aloud

MONTPELIER, VERMONT: Do you read your prose aloud? If so, does it help you discover awkward turns of phrase, clunky transitions, or poor word choice? Since focusing on creative writing in the last year I have heard this advice often. I heard it most recently here at my residency at the Vermont College of Fine […]

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A Shooting Star, or the Story of a Life

Thirty years ago, on July 16, 1981, I lost one of my muses to a violent car crash. I had never met Harry Chapin, had never been blessed to hear him perform live, but he shared the story of his life through his music, and the story of my life is forever changed because that […]

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Sharing Without Fear

How do you explain a moment when you’ve experienced magic? Several friends and family members have asked me to describe my first residency in my MFA in Writing program, and I have no easy answer. You try describing the experience of spending nearly two weeks with people who like you aspire to be the best […]

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Creativity Tweets of the Week — 5/20/11

I can’t get a clear answer on what is going to happen after May 21st, Judgment Day. Assuming I am not one of the Saved, do I go down below? Do I cease to exist? Do I wander a post-apocalyptic Earth like Mad Max? All I know is, whether you’re going up, down, or staying […]

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The Power of Play: Escape From the Tyranny of Technique

Today we’re featuring a guest post from the multi-talented InterPlay leader Kate Arms-Roberts, who will share insights on creativity and on what the heck InterPlay is. Picasso spoke of taking a lifetime to learn to paint like a child. There is a developmental pattern common to many creatives. Early in creative development, interest and inspiration […]

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Collaboration and Mutual Respect

Frank Sinatra said he lived his life “My Way,” but a filmmaker and screenwriter I met in Providence, Rhode Island has a more democratic approach to life. I visited Eileen Boarman while she was directing a Public Service Announcement, or PSA, for Rhode Island Department of Transportation. She allowed me to film a bit of […]

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Advancing Storytelling to a Fine Art

“A lot of people say, ‘Anyone can tell a story’… Well, I agree with that, that anyone can tell a story, just in the way anyone can provide first aid… but with more training and experience you’re better at what you do.” The craft of oral storytelling has evolved and grown over the centuries, Kevin […]

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