Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Roller Coaster of Creative Work

This week I delivered a new recording to the manufacturer for replication. My CD release event is scheduled for May 9 in San Diego, and if all goes according to plan I will have a product ready to distribute by then. All told this particular process has been a little more intense than some of my prior projects because I have imposed some more stringent deadlines on myself to produce the recording quickly.  All told, from conception to completion the recording took about a month to complete, and by the time it shipped I felt absolutely drained.

Recently, it was pointed out to me that I tend to work in spurts of manic productivity followed by lulls of recovery. This sort of creative bipolar condition sounds horrible to me when I hear it described, but undeniably this is my customary pattern. Intellectually, it seems that it would be so much better to work more steadily and incrementally, with a predictable routine progressing sanely from day to day. While I hold this notion as an idealized objective, it simply has not been born out in my daily experience.

My projects consume me, in every sense of the word, leading me melt down into an inert puddle after the immediate project at hand is finished. It usually takes a few days before I fully regain consciousness, and then I start the process all over again. Well I am exaggerating a bit, but that makes for a better story. Still, I find the cyclic rhythm of my work very curious. I certainly value the idea of workman-like discipline, where regularly measured steps advance the work little by little, and that is how things typically start out for me. But then something takes over, the muse descends and then my manic side takes control leading to a frenzied episode of crazy-making energy.

Not that I am complaining.  It's just curious to notice.

Posted via email from pkpiano's posterous

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