10 April 2014

Thursday Thought:: Moodling

“So you see the imagination needs moodling—long, inefficient, happy idling, dawdling and puttering. These people who are always briskly doing something and as busy as waltzing mice, they have little, sharp, staccato ideas, such as: ‘I see where I can make an annual cut of $3.47 in my meat budget.’ But they have no slow, big ideas. And the fewer consoling, noble, shining, free, jovial, magnanimous ideas that come, the more nervously and desperately they rush and run from office to office and up and downstairs, thinking by action at last to make life have some warmth and meaning…
“If good ideas do not come at once, or for a long time, do not be troubled at all. Wait for them. Put down the little ideas however insignificant they are. But do not feel, any more, guilty about idleness and solitude.
“But of course I must say this:
“If your idleness is a complete slump, that is, indecision, fretting, worry, or due to over-feeding and physical mugginess, that is bad, terrible and utterly sterile…
“But if it is the dreamy idleness that children have, an idleness when you walk alone for a long, long time, or take a long, dreamy time at dressing, or lie in bed at night and thoughts come and go, or dig in a garden, or drive a car for many hours alone, or play the piano, or sew, or paint ALONE; or an idleness—and this is what I want you to do—where you sit with pencil and paper or happen to be thinking, that is creative idleness. With all my heart I tell you and reassure you: at such times you are being slowly filled and re-charged with warm imagination, with wonderful, living thoughts…
“…good ideas come slowly and…the more clear, tranquil and unstimulated you are, the slower the ideas come but the better they are.”

-Brenda Ueland, If You Want to Write

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