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Midway

Paradoxes of Creativity

What do you think of this list of eight paradoxes of creativity from creativity thinker Michael Michalko? I think he's nailed it.

To create, a person must

•Have knowledge but forget the knowledge;

•See unexpected connections in things but not have a mental disorder;

•Work hard but spend time doing nothing;

•Create many ideas yet most of them are useless;

•Look at the same thing as everyone else, yet see something different;

•Desire success but learn how to fail;

•Be persistent but not stubborn; and,

•Listen to experts but know how to disregard them.

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What do you think of this list of eight paradoxes of creativity from creativity thinker Michael Michalko? I think he's nailed it.

To create, a person must

•Have knowledge but forget the knowledge;

•See unexpected connections in things but not have a mental disorder;

•Work hard but spend time doing nothing;

•Create many ideas yet most of them are useless;

•Look at the same thing as everyone else, yet see something different;

•Desire success but learn how to fail;

•Be persistent but not stubborn; and,

•Listen to experts but know how to disregard them.

The description of creativity is right on.

Not sure some of these are exactly paradoxical, though.

Aren't paradoxes supposed to be ideas that seem irreconcilable but that actually can go together?

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I think you're right Goss. I believe Mr. Michalko may stretched the meaning of paradox a teensy bit here.

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Here is one :

The more creative your song is, the more jarring it appears to be as you are writing it, meaning that you run the risk of "moderating yourself into meaningless" by smoothing out the hard edges

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You run the risk of "moderating yourself into meaningless" by smoothing out the hard edges

Ohh, I like that one.

Here's one: You create what you love, even when other people hate it.

Neal

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You must listen to the subconscious, consciously, and allow the meaningless to spill onto the page, because that is where the true meaning lies.

When you succeed, you have to do something different, because doing the same thing twice is failure.

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You must listen to the subconscious, consciously, and allow the meaningless to spill onto the page, because that is where the true meaning lies.

When you succeed, you have to do something different, because doing the same thing twice is failure.

and allow the meaningless to spill onto the page, because that is where the true meaning lies

Good Lord, Man. I sprayed my Coke Cola so hard trying not to laugh I almost shorted out my keyboard. :lol:

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How about getting the best ideas at the worst times--in the shower, while driving, as you're falling asleep, etc..

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"•Have knowledge but forget the knowledge"

It's nigh impossible to "forget" all the elements of craft that a songwriter may potentially spend hours, days, and weeks learning.

They come out naturally when they are needed, and if a songwriter learned their technique and theory inside and out, such thought processes won't steal focus from the multiplication of creative ideas and questions that arise.

New ideas don't appear out of a void---they sprout from connections and inferences between existing ideas.

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New ideas don't appear out of a void---they sprout from connections and inferences between existing ideas.

Exactly ! wink.gif

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How about getting the best ideas at the worst times--in the shower, while driving, as you're falling asleep, etc..

While you're having sex. :lol:

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Alistair said an interesting thing with "You have to listen to the subconscious consciously..."

That resonates. I trust my subconscious for seeds, but then I work hard to understand where a given seed came from--often if I can discover what sprouted the thing, I can sprout many more. What's most difficult is to become aware of habits and creative practices that operate as knee-jerk reactions, and to attempt to insert new processes to replace or supplement those before I can fall into any frustrating ruts.

I have a songwriting notebook and a book of songwriting processes that I experiment with. I definitely encourage any songwriter to try picking apart their own process to see what's there and what might be missing.

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How about getting the best ideas at the worst times--in the shower, while driving, as you're falling asleep, etc..

While you're having sex. :lol:

Hmmm... is that a female thing?

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