Big Magic Quotes
Do whatever brings you to life, then. Follow your own fascinations, obsessions, and compulsions. Trust them. Create whatever causes a revolution in your heart.
The universe buries strange jewels deep within us all, and then stands back to see if we can find them.
Recognizing that people's reactions don't belong to you is the only sane way to create. If people enjoy what you've created, terrific. If people ignore what you've created, too bad. If people misunderstand what you've created, don't sweat it. And what if people absolutely hate what you've created? What if people attack you with savage vitriol, and insult your intelligence, and malign your motives, and drag your good name through the mud? Just smile sweetly and suggest - as politely as you possibly can - that they go make their own fucking art. Then stubbornly continue making yours.
A creative life is an amplified life. It’s a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life. Living in this manner—continually and stubbornly bringing forth the jewels that are hidden within you—is a fine art, in and of itself.
So this, I believe, is the central question upon which all creative living hinges: Do you have the courage to bring forth the treasures that are hidden within you?.
Anyhow, the older I get, the less impressed I become with originality. These days, I’m far more moved by authenticity. Attempts at originality can often feel forced and precious, but authenticity has quiet resonance that never fails to stir me.
You're not required to save the world with your creativity. Your art not only doesn't have to be original, in other words, it also doesn't have to be important. For example, whenever anyone tells me that they want to write a book in order to help other people I always think 'Oh, please don't. Please don't try to help me.' I mean it's very kind of you to help people, but please don't make it your sole creative motive because we will feel the weight of your heavy intention, and it will put a strain upon our souls.
I am 99.8 percent qualified for this task, but until I master that last smidgen of ability, I will hold myself back, just to be on the safe side.
We all spend our twenties and thirties trying so hard to be perfect, because we’re so worried about what people will think of us. Then we get into our forties and fifties, and we finally start to be free, because we decide that we don’t give a damn what anyone thinks of us. But you won’t be completely free until you reach your sixties and seventies, when you finally realize this liberating truth—nobody was ever thinking about you, anyhow.
Creativity is sacred, and it is not sacred. What we make matters enormously, and it doesn’t matter at all. We toil alone, and we are accompanied by spirits. We are terrified, and we are brave. Art is a crushing chore and a wonderful privilege. Only when we are at our most playful can divinity finally get serious with us. Make space for all these paradoxes to be equally true inside your soul, and I promise—you can make anything. So please calm down now and get back to work, okay? The treasures that are hidden inside you are hoping you will say yes.
If you want to be a professional artist, but you aren’t willing to see your work rejected hundreds, if not thousands, of times, then you’re done before you start. If you want to be a hotshot court lawyer, but can’t stand the eighty-hour workweeks, then I’ve got bad news for you.
creative entitlement simply means believing that you are allowed to be here, and that—merely by being here—you are allowed to have a voice and a vision of your own.
You can clear out whatever obstacles are preventing you from living your most creative life, with the simple understanding that whatever is bad for you is probably also bad for your work.
Possessing a creative mind, after all, is something like having a border collie for a pet: It needs to work, or else it will cause you an outrageous amount of trouble. Give your mind a job to do, or else it will find a job to do, and you might not like the job it invents (eating the couch, digging a hole through the living room floor, biting the mailman, etc.). It has taken me years to learn this, but it does seem to be the case that if I am not actively creating something, then I am probably actively destroying something (myself, a relationship, or my own peace of mind).
Give your mind a job to do, or else it will find a job to do, and you might not like the job it invents.
I think perfectionism is just fear in fancy shoes and a mink coat, pretending to be elegant when actually it's just terrified. Because underneath that shiny veneer, perfectionism is nothing more that a deep existential angst the says, again and again, 'I am not good enough and I will never be good enough.
A good-enough novel violently written now is better than a perfect novel meticulously written never.
So many of us believe in perfection, which ruins everything else, because the perfect is not only the enemy of the good; it’s also the enemy of the realistic, the possible, and the fun... The most evil trick about perfectionism, though, is that it disguises itself as a virtue.
My soul, when I tend to it, is a far more expansive and fascinating source of guidance than my ego will ever be, because my soul desires only one thing: wonder. And since creativity is my most efficient pathway to wonder, I take refuge there, and it feeds my soul, and it quiets the hungry ghost—thereby saving me from the most dangerous aspect of myself.
But never delude yourself into believing that you require someone else’s blessing (or even their comprehension) in order to make your own creative work.
The guardians of high culture will try to convince you that the arts belong only to a chosen few, but they are wrong and they are also annoying.
The universe buries strange jewels deep within us all, and then stands back to see if we can find them. The hunt to discover those jewels––that's creative living.
If you’re going to live your life based on delusions (and you are, because we all do), then why not at least select a delusion that is helpful?.
The essential ingredients for creativity remain exactly the same for everybody: courage, enchantment, permission, persistence, trust—and those elements are universally accessible. Which does not mean that creative living is always easy; it merely means that creative living is always possible.
I have never created anything in my life that did not make me feel, at some point or another, like I was the guy who just walked into a fancy ball wearing a homemade lobster costume.
Because the truth is, I believe that creativity is a force of enchantment—not entirely human in its origins.
Whatever you do, try not to dwell too long on your failures. You don’t need to conduct autopsies on your disasters.
ideas are alive, that ideas do seek the most available human collaborator, that ideas do have a conscious will, that ideas do move from soul to soul, that ideas will always try to seek the swiftest and most efficient conduit to the earth (just as lightning does).
Fear is always triggered by creativity, because creativity asks you to enter into realms of uncertain outcome. This is nothing to be ashamed of. It is, however, something to be dealt with.
your life is short and rare and amazing and miraculous, and you want to do really interesting things and make really interesting things while you’re still here.
If you can’t see what I’m already getting out of this, then I’ll never be able to explain it to you.
Pure creativity is magnificent expressly because it is the opposite of everything else in life that’s essential or inescapable (food, shelter, medicine, rule of law, social order, community and familial responsibility, sickness, loss, death, taxes, etc.). Pure creativity is something better than a necessity; it’s a gift. It’s the frosting. Our creativity is a wild and unexpected bonus from the universe.
Let people have their opinions. More than that--let people love their opinions, just as you and I are in love with ours. But never delude yourself into believing that you require someone else's blessing (or even their comprehension) in order to make your own creative work. And always remember that people's judgments about you are none of your business.
But inspiration is still sitting there right beside me, and it is trying. Inspiration is trying to send me messages in every form it can—through dreams, through portents, through clues, through coincidences, through déjà vu, through kismet, through surprising waves of attraction and reaction, through the chills that run up my arms, through the hair that stands up on the back of my neck, through the pleasure of something new and surprising, through stubborn ideas that keep me awake all night long . . . whatever works. Inspiration is always trying to work with me.
I think it’s a mighty act of human love to remind somebody that they can accomplish things by themselves, and that the world does not automatically owe them any reward, and that they are not as weak and hobbled as they may believe.
Anyhow, what else are you going to do with your time here on earth—not make things? Not do interesting stuff? Not follow your love and your curiosity?.
Creativity is a path for the brave, yes, but it is not a path for the fearless, and it’s important to recognize the distinction. Bravery means doing something scary. Fearlessness means not even understanding what the word scary means. If your goal in life is to become fearless, then I believe you’re already on the wrong path, because the only truly fearless people I’ve ever met were straight-up sociopaths and a few exceptionally reckless three-year-olds—and those aren’t good role models for anyone.
Do you have the courage? Do you have the courage to bring forth this work? The treasures that are hidden inside you are hoping you will say yes.
We must understand the need for perfectionism is a corrosive waste of time, because nothing is ever beyond criticism. No matter how many hours you spend to render something flawless, somebody will always be able to find fault with it.
Genetic randomness had already determined how much talent I’d been allotted, and destiny’s randomness would account for my share of luck. The only piece I had any control over was my discipline. Recognizing that, it seemed like the best plan would be to work my ass off. That was the only card I had to play, so I played it hard.
the clock is ticking, and the world is spinning, and we simply do not have time anymore to think so small.
What you produce is not necessarily always sacred, I realized, just because you think it’s sacred. What is sacred is the time that you spend working on the project, and what that time does to expand your imagination, and what that expanded imagination does to transform your life.
Because without that source of wonder, I know that I am doomed. Without it, I will forever wander the world in a state of bottomless dissatisfaction—nothing but a howling ghost, trapped in a body made of slowly deteriorating meat.
If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you don’t bring forth what is within you, what you don’t bring forth will destroy you.
You are worthy, dear one, regardless of the outcome. You will keep making your work, regardless of the outcome. You will keep sharing your work, regardless of the outcome. You were born to create, regardless of the outcome. You will never lose trust in the creative process, even when you don't understand the outcome.