Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Practice

A page from my "daily draw" journal
I have been doing various daily practices for many years and they have been instrumental in my artistic and spiritual growth. For over 20 years I’ve begun my day with “morning pages” (from The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron) which is doing two to three pages of stream-of-consciousness writing in longhand each day. For almost 20 years I’ve also been writing one haiku every day, which means I have a lot of haiku by now. And for about five years I’ve been doing what I call my “daily draw” which means I draw or paint or sculpt an image from the day before, sometimes illustrating the haiku I just wrote, or something I saw on my daily walk, or something I remember from a conversation, or whatever appears from my hands.

None of these writings or drawings has to be good, although sometimes they are excellent. But quality is not the issue, and despite the mounds of paper I now have filled with scribbles, poems, and drawings, neither is quantity. The issue is practice. In practice you are allowed to make mistakes, to be a novice, to admit your failings. Practice teaches you to love and appreciate yourself, in all your flawed and silly glory.

Practice makes me happy. Every day.

Kim Pearson is an author, ghostwriter, and owner of Primary Sources, a writing service that helps others become authors of professional and compelling books and articles. She has authored 12 books of her own, and ghostwritten more than 45 non-fiction books and memoirs. To learn more about her books or services, visit kimpearson.me.

5 comments :

  1. I applaud your consistency, Kim. It sounds like you have found the magic key if your exercises make you happy and you learn from it on a daily basis. Have you thought of putting your "practices" into a book?

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  2. Better to have a crappy first draft than no draft at all. :)

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  3. So practice does not make perfect——it makes happy. I like that. :-)

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  4. Yes, practice! Better over time, even if not perfect. :-)

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  5. Good for you, Kim. That kind of resolve and persistence is not that easy. I can't count the number of times I've started morning pages and then dropped the routine in just a few days. I do keep trying, though.

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The Blood-Red Pencil is a blog focusing on editing and writing advice. Some of our contributors are editors, some are authors, and some are writing sheep. Yes, sheep.

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