Tag Archives: creativity

When Voices Come to Mind

“Most modern readers may feel instinctively that literary experience has much in common with the act of overhearing. Reading fiction is a process of allowing characters’ voices to sound in the inner ear, and absorbing the imagined noise they make (magically cued by curls of ink on a page).

It’s common to think of writers, too, building fictional worlds through voices, as if creativity begins as a subtle internal overhearing. The analogy between imagining and hearing certainly runs deep in our myths of culture. Inspiration, that theory of composition at once ancient, Romantic, and modern, tells us that creativity ignites by admitting some mysterious other voice into the writer’s flow of being. To write means having one’s voice disrupted, taken over, rendered by another.

Dickens believed this, too. Later in his career, Dickens’s vocal impersonations of his own characters gave this truth a theatrical form: the public reading tour. … Hearing voices and inventing character were also indivisible aspects of his creativity.”

Read More: theguardian.com/books/2014/aug/22/charles-dickens-hearing-voices-created-his-novels

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Creativity a Byproduct of Mental Disorder?

“intelligence doesn’t have much effect on creativity: most creative people are pretty smart, but they don’t have to be that smart [...] But if high IQ does not indicate creative genius, then what does? [...]

What differences in nature and nurture can explain why some people suffer from mental illness and some do not? And why are so many of the world’s most creative minds among the most afflicted? [...]

As research methodology improved over time, the idea that genius might be hereditary gained support. [...]

For many of my subjects from that first study—all writers associated with the Iowa Writers’ Workshop—mental illness and creativity went hand in hand. This link is not surprising. The archetype of the mad genius dates back to at least classical times, when Aristotle noted, “Those who have been eminent in philosophy, politics, poetry, and the arts have all had tendencies toward melancholia. [...]

Among those who ended up losing their battles with mental illness through suicide are Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway, Vincent van Gogh, John Berryman, Hart Crane, Mark Rothko, Diane Arbus, Anne Sexton, and Arshile Gorky. [...]

The creative [...] and their relatives have a higher rate of mental illness than the controls and their relatives do. [...] 

Why does creativity run in families? What is it that gets transmitted? How much is due to nature and how much to nurture? Are writers especially prone to mood disorders because writing is an inherently lonely and introspective activity? What would I find if I studied a group of scientists instead?”

And the answer is: theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/06/secrets-of-the-creative-brain/372299/

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Writers are born, not made

“The world goes on creating newer things. Literature is a creation, not theory. The law of nature is to create new things. To neglect creation is to go against nature. In literature a writer goes with an experiment in thought, subject, language, style and so on. Every creator should create new things in a way understandable to the readers whose nature of perceiving things and level of cognition changes in accordance with several social facets. Every creative change brings happiness to man.”

“Literature is an endeavour of searching the space of sentiment and feeling. The feeling and sentiment connects one person with another. Science and technology can never and in no age can ignore the feeling and sensibility of the creator. The heartless science and technology can never challenge this truth of a creation.”

Some people may argue that literary creation as an outcome of continual endeavour. Creation is essentially an outcome of inherent ingenuity. The living creation cannot be created by an endeavour. Inherent ingenuity is the must. A writer is born not made.”

From: mediaforfreedom.com

Reading Fiction Leads to Sophisticated Thinking and Greater Creativity

“Are you uncomfortable with ambiguity? It’s a common condition, but a highly problematic one. The compulsion to quell that unease can inspire snap judgments, rigid thinking, and bad decision-making.Fortunately, new research suggests a simple anecdote for this affliction: Read more literary fiction.”

“So how does literature induce this ease with the unknown?”

Researchers have the answer:

“Exposure to literature,” the researchers write in the Creativity Research Journal,“may offer a (way for people) to become more likely to open their minds.”

“The thinking a person engages in while reading fiction does not necessarily lead him or her to a decision,” they note. This, they observe, decreases the reader’s need to come to a definitive conclusion.

“Furthermore,” they add, “while reading, the reader can stimulate the thinking styles even of people he or she might personally dislike. One can think along and even feel along with Humbert Humbert in Lolita, no matter how offensive one finds this character.

“This double release—of thinking through events without concerns for urgency and permanence, and thinking in ways that are different than one’s own—may produce effects of opening the mind.”

From: psmag.com

Find a boring job, write a novel

“Being bored at work can have a positive effect because daydreaming can increase creativity, according to a new study.”

“Boredom at work has always been seen as something to be eliminated, but perhaps we should be embracing it in order to enhance our creativity.”

“We want to see what the practical implications of this finding are. Do people who are bored at work become more creative in other areas of their job, or do they go home and write novels?”

More: http://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/bored-at-work-great–youll-be-more-creative-says-study-8443540.html

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Inherited Creativity

So you want to write a novel? You must be born with it:

“Researchers from Yale in the US and Moscow State University in Russia launched the study to see whether there was a scientific reason why well-known writers have produced other writers. …

“This work is unique in its objective to investigate the familiality and heritability of the trait of creative writing,” the researchers write, “while controlling for general cognitive ability and for the general level of family functioning. Despite the lack of systematic research on the aetiology of writing in general and creative writing in particular, it is rather difficult not to acknowledge the familiality of creativity in writing, given the families of writers who have entertained and educated us over the years. These findings constitute the tip of an interesting iceberg, indicating that there may be some components of creative writing that are familial and heritable.

“It may be worth further studies to confirm that creative writers are indeed born, as well as made. When writers capitalise on these inborn propensities and expose these propensities to rich experiences, we, as readers, can enjoy books that not only form the foundation of cultural life but also impact the biology of the human brain.”

More: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/want-to-be-a-writer-have-a-literary-parent-8200777.html

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The 7 Reasons to Read Fiction

“If you’re anything like me, then you’ve been searching for justification for your fiction reading habit. So, I decided to create that justification instead of waiting around for someone else to do it!

1. Fiction increases your creativity.
2. Fiction sharpens your writing skills and boosts your vocabulary.
3. Fiction reduces stress and provides a safe haven through escapism.
4. Fiction provides insights into the human condition.
5. Fiction improves your focus.
6. Fiction polishes your analytical abilities.
7. Fiction gives you something to talk about.

You see, there’s no need to feel guilty about picking up that novel. … The fiction genre is brimming with vast knowledge just waiting to be tapped.”

From: http://www.business2community.com/marketing/7-ways-your-fiction-addiction-makes-you-a-sharper-marketer-0244129

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Writers are obligated to live for themselves

“And yet I had not been wrong, perhaps, after all, in sacrificing not only the vain pleasures of the world but the real pleasure of friendship to that of spending the whole day in this green garden.  People who enjoy the capacity—it is true that such people are artists, and I had long been convinced that I should never be that—are also under an obligation to live for themselves. And friendship is a dispensation from this duty, an abdication of self.  Even conversation, which is the mode of expression of friendship, is a superficial digression which gives us no new acquisition. We may talk for a lifetime without doing more than indefinitely repeat the vacuity of a minute, whereas the march of thought in the solitary travail of artistic creation proceeds downwards, into the depths, in the only direction that is not closed to us, along which we are free to advance—though with more effort, it is true—towards a goal of truth.  And friendship is not merely devoid of virtue, like conversation, it is fatal to us as well. For the sense of boredom which it is impossible not to feel in a friend’s company (when, that is to say, we must remain exposed on the surface of our consciousness, instead of pursuing our voyage of discovery into the depths) for those of us in whom the law of development is purely internal—that first impression of boredom our friendship impels us to correct when we are alone again, to recall with emotion the words uttered by our friend, to look upon them as a valuable addition to our substance, albeit we are not like buildings to which stones can be added from without, but like trees which draw from their own sap the knot that duly appears on their trunks, the spreading roof of their foliage.”
Marcel Proust, Within a Budding Grove

Reading literature helps you understand life

Feeling foggy about the world around you? Read literature:

“Literary works are portrayals of the thinking patterns and social norms prevalent in society. They are a depiction of the different facets of common man’s life. Classical literary works serve as a food for thought and a tonic for imagination, creativity and national integration. Exposing an individual to good literary works is equivalent to providing people with the finest of educational opportunity”. source

Surroundings vs Creativity

“The future poet laureate revealed his private reservations in a series of letters to Olwyn Hughes after moving to Massachusetts with his first wife, the American poet Sylvia Plath, in 1957.

In one letter, penned shortly after the move, he said that he would rather “eat mud” than continue to be exposed to American consumerism.

[...] in one letter to his sister, written in 1957, the poet complained that he felt stifled by being surrounded by fast food chains, stores and branding which he felt were all aimed at the “average man”.

He wrote: “Luxury is stuffed down your throat – a mass-produced luxury – till you feel you’d rather be rolling in the mud and eating that.”

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