Trying something new: I’ve deactivated my shadow and daylight Twitter accounts, and I uninstalled one of the three games I play a couple times a day on my phone. Why?
I’ve listened to Manoush Zomorodi through a few channels, her own podcasts and one in which she was interviewed. On The Ten-Minute Writer’s Workshop, she explained how her creativity went away when she got the latest iPhone. All the free moments of her day were occupied by keeping up with social media, doing work, playing games, and chatting with friends. Her mind had no down time, and she formed the theory that boredom is where the restless mind becomes creative; burden your mind with distracting nonsense, and there’s no time to come up with new ideas.
In the pursuit of inspiration and creativity, why wouldn’t I take this at face value? This is exactly the sort of thing I’m desperate for. Having gone a full day without Twitter, I’m acutely conscious of how many times I reflexively reach for my phone during any lull or even in the middle of work, seeking a momentary distraction. I expected that, that’s what everyone says when they go on a social media cleanse. You can read articles and anecdotes on how bad social media is for you and how it’s taken over the other ways we used to engage with the world and connect with each other, and you can nod at it, distantly acknowledging some truth to it. But then you get to the point where you stop seeing social media as just another channel to engage and… kind of a cognitive cancer or virus. It’s something that creeps into you, colors your perceptions, and alters your expectations and self-perception. And it has a self-defense mechanism built in, because as soon as someone mentions “social media cleanse,” you can feel your guts adjust and your sweat glands tickle as you reflexively reject the idea, faster than thought. Almost as visceral and dire as if someone asked you to leave your phone at home for the day.
Think about what we’ve become. People change, of course, society evolves, but this feels like a step beyond that.
Anyway, I’m desperately trying to regain my creativity, and given that I’m disenchanted with and heartbroken by my online communities, it seemed reasonable and even enticing to shut them down. I deactivated my daylight Instagram account, too, but reactivated my Size IG account, because I need that steady stream of big round butts. Nowhere else to get them. Sure, I can create them in Daz Studio, but it’s not the same, somehow. It’s novel to receive that stimulation from someone else.
Along with shutting down significant portions of my phone and online communities, I’m going to reread The Artist’s Way and try to complete it this time. I think I only got through week six or seven last time. But the thing about trying out these lessons and self-taught guides to developing your creativity, is that you have to meet them halfway. That doesn’t mean quitting halfway: that means seeing it all the way through, giving it a good-faith effort, taking it at its word. And then and the end, when it fails and nothing’s changed, then you can bitch with authority.
And I’ll take more walks. I have to keep exercising, to loosen up my stiffening and wounded shoulders. I’m still practicing four languages (French, German, Spanish, and Indonesian). I’m really trying to read more, and I hope that shifting away from my phone means I’ll have better attention span to get through these books I’m actually interested in but can’t seem to make time for. That’s horrible. When I was in my 20s, I used to read three books at a time: one on the bus, one before bed, and one just lying around to stretch out on the couch with whenever. Now it’s a burden and a labor to read one chapter of one book each week. That’s not progress, and I’m not happy with it. I’m going to change it, I’ll read more, and I’ll write more.
That’s another thing: NaNoWriMo’s coming up, and I don’t feel capable of meeting the challenge. I don’t. I haven’t written anything in two months, and I’m only now taking drastic measures to try to reclaim my creativity. What could I possibly do during NaNoWriMo? I have no ideas, nothing novel-length, no smattering of short stories to hack out in aggregate.
And before that is Drawlloween. Is anyone even doing that? Anyone with a soul has rejected Inktober, since founder Jake Parker is issuing cease-and-desists to anyone promoting their work and daring to mention his copyrighted “Inktober.” Which is hilarious, after his bald-faced plagiarism of Alphonso Dunn’s Pen and Ink Drawing—fucking ripped it off, point by point, and yet he goes after the artists he claims to inspire. There are plenty of alternative artistic prompts out there:
- The Owl: The Inktober Controversy
- Brush Warriors: Inktober Alternatives
- XQuissitive: 11 Best October Art Challenges
- All Your Crooked Heart: Seasonal Alternatives
Just as you don’t need to get Size porn from fucking Nazis, a lesson the community has yet to take to heart, you don’t need to participate in a harmful egotist’s October drawing challenge. The bandwagon isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, kids: the people you admire aren’t following the crowd. Think about that.
Anyway. So I’m home alone, drinking vodka and homemade lemon sours, listening to Italian lounge, and… writing. I’m outlining a commission. I’m not getting my self-esteem crushed by Twitter, I’m not fighting haplessly in a pay-to-play app. I’m doing some writing. Don’t tell anyone.
And hey, a new trailer dropped for Giantess Attack vs. Mecha-Fembot. I know you’re excited about that. As always, show Giantess Hug some love: she cleaned up all the giantess scenes of Asami in the Shin Ultraman reboot.