Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Lets Celebrate Mistake Day

Toast of the Day: Here's to the silly mistakes that turn in to creative discoveries.

As I mentioned in a previous post today is the day I get to interview the wonderful Jill Badonsky. I believe that I first encountered Jill in an issue of Somerset Studio. I was delighted by her wonderful drawings and attitude towards creativity. Then she showed up at Creativity Portal and i loved reading her articles there too. I had bought her book The Nine Modern Day Muses and a bodyguard when I first heard about it and it is wonderful. When I heard that she had written a new book I knew I would want it. When the opportunity came around to participate in her blogging book tour I jumped at the chance. If you know nothing about Jill you are in for a treat. Her new book the Awe Manac is based on the idea of the Farmers Almanac but its focus is on creativity. There is a page for everyday of the year full of ideas and fun ways to spark your creativity.

Here is my interview with Jill.

The Awe-Manac is full of wonderful ideas for every day of the year. I haven't decided what is my favorite idea yet. I have enjoyed celebrating some of the fun days like National Chocolate Cake day. Was it hard to limit the number of these offerings? This seemed like such a big project how did you break it down into manageable tasks?

Thanks for that nice compliment. It was hard to limit what was offered on each day since only so much could fit on the 6 by 9 inch pages. But I felt like I was auditioning certain events and had to accept the ones I intuitively thought would bring the most inspiration, activation of creative juices or laughter to readers. I'm hoping I get to do another issue called The Awe-manac Reloaded (I have enough information to do an Awe-manac each year for long time) where I can include some of the things that got cut.

It was actually like a puzzle to break it down to manageable tasks. I had a file for every day of the year and put events on them as I found them – the discovery of what would work was a blast. I made sure to honor people I admired and who had great quotes and events that lent themselves to creative prompts or inspiration. It was not a linear process though, I was all over the board filling in days until eventually every day was complete. It seemed endless for awhile – the key was that it was fun.

Do you have a preferred way to work with the book?

I use it according to my intuitive mood du jour. Sometimes I just read the page of the day to see what energizes me, sometimes I read ahead or review what I've already read. Sometimes I let the daily prompts be a springboard for something I'm more in the mood to do than what they suggest. I simply read the page if I have no time to dive into prompts but even five minutes or a few sentences of playing with an idea brings some new creative energy.

I often have so many ideas that sometimes it's paralyzing. What do you do to focus on just one and follow it through, Do you have any techniques you use to manage it all?

That's not uncommon in the world of creative ideas. My rule is working on three ideas at a time. I will put ideas on index cards and chose the top three that energize my body rather than using the shoulds or linearly logical rationale that sometimes comes from my mind.
Rotating three ideas at a time, even if daydreaming about one of them is all I do, seems to feed the other ideas and keep me from resistance, resentment or blandness. As you can tell, much of my style depends on my intuition but what I know from years of coaching is that changing ideas too much is a form of avoidance. Staying with an idea during the creative chaos that frequently comes up is a triumph only about 15% of us attain.

What do you do when you are creatively stuck? Do you find there is one thing that helps you every time?

Again, because my creative process is fickle, one thing does not help every time – in Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coaching we have 10 main solutions for creativity stuckery. But the thing that comes close to working every time is breaking things down into small, fun, adventures that encourage imperfection at the beginning and authenticity throughout.

Can you tell my readers about the Kaizen Muse Creativity Course? I have been thinking about taking this course myself and I am sure my readers would love to hear more about it.

Thanks for asking. The best way to learn about it is to beam yourself over to . The next training is in August.

What I can tell you that's not at the site is that it was invented because life coaching blocked my creativity. I wanted to provide a coaching method that was compassionate, non-linear, intuitive based, filled with tools that appealed to the kid-like spirit so vital to my creativity. It is a coaching model that includes a creative experience in every session so it's not all about accountability and being told what to do. One of the last things many of us want is another person telling us what to do and adding another activity to our overwhelming to–do list. KMCC is all about easing into creative habits through the back door and creating one of those momentums that take you with it effortlessly.. like a current of bliss. It's about accepting ourselves as splendidly imperfect souls that need to get out of own way sometimes.. it's all already there for all of us.

and a gift from Jill this is today's page from the Awe Manac. I couldn't get it to enlarge so I hope by clicking on it you will be able to read it.


Olivia said...

GREAT interview, Kate! I bought the book when you first recommended's exciting to find out more about the author.

It's especially interesting that Jill said that life coaching blocked her creativity, as I feel the same.

I read the Awe-Manac every day when I get up :)

Blessings and love,


Dan n Kai said...

Aloha Kate,
Thank you for introducing Jill to us. She's a delight and the interview was wonderful, creative and interesting.
I'll reread I'm sure as there are more treasures to discover here :)
PEace, Kai

ahaphodite said...

Well, I see I'm in the spirit of Mistake Day... as I read through the interview I see some typos... awe-well.. I like to be an example of those things I teach... Close Enough.
Thanks for the wonderful interview, Kate!

In joy,

Janet said...

Thanks for doing this interview with Jill. I didn't know her until now but she's definitely someone I'll follow. Mistakes seem to be my specialty lately!

violette said...

thanks Kate for the great interview....i learned some interesting things about Jill's creative process!

Love, Violette

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