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Element 8 of the Creative Process: Rest

Element 8 of the Creative Process: Rest

Posted by on Nov 12, 2014 in Tips | 0 comments

Video Content: Element 8: Rest Have you ever felt guilty or ashamed of not producing enough as a writer? Hi, this is Amanda Rooker, Executive Editor at SplitSeed, and today’s tip is the final tip in our series on the creative process. It is Element 8: rest. Ideas that grow are meant to be shared. So if you have gone through the process of growing your idea into the form of a book and sharing that book—that idea—so that it can bear good fruit in the lives of others, you’ve earned a well-deserved rest. Now that time of rest may vary from writer to writer. Some writers just need a couple of weeks off before new ideas start growing again. Some writers need a couple of months. Some need a year, and some need more than a year. It all depends on the kind of person you are, the kinds of ideas you tend to grow, and how much energy they take out of you as they are growing within you. The same is true in the natural world. The season of winter may look barren, but actually the plants or the trees are just saving up energy until the time comes for them to be fruitful again. So if you are in this period of rest after you’ve produced your idea and published it and shared it, just know that rest doesn’t necessarily mean doing nothing. You can still incorporate some of the elements of the creative process into your life so that you know that you will be ready to receive those ideas when they come to you. Remember to spend plenty of time with the Source (the sun for your ideas). Remember to incorporate the element of water, of taking care of yourself. Also remember to spend time in the garden—to spend plenty of time in your imagination to notice what seeds are there and might be ready to grow. So the next time an idea plants itself in your imagination, you’ll be much better at recognizing it and tending it and allowing it to grow according to the rhythm and schedule it needs than you...

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Element 7 of the Creative Process: Harvesting

Element 7 of  the Creative Process:  Harvesting

Posted by on Sep 12, 2014 in Tips | 0 comments

Video Content: How do you know when it is time to publish your manuscript? Hi, this is Amanda Rooker, Executive Editor at SplitSeed, and today’s writing tip is Element 7 in the creative process: harvest and share the produce. One of the true joys of gardening is that after your long work of nurturing your plants in the garden, you get to share the harvest with the ones that you love. You get to share it with family, with friends, with neighbors—you get to share your abundance with the people who can really benefit from it. And the same is true with the writing process. Once you finish your book, we all have the joy of sharing our idea so it can bear fruit in the lives of others. Now, how does the gardener know when it is time to harvest? To put it simply, it is when what they see in their garden matches what they saw on the seed packet that they bought when they planted those seeds in the first place. And the same is true for the writing process. When the experience of reading our manuscript matches the experience of seeing the image we saw at the beginning of the process, we know it is time to share it. Before we share it, however, we definitely need to pull in a team of people to partner with us to share it in the best way possible so that it is easy for our readers to access. And that will involve bringing together professional copyeditors, proofreaders, interior designers, cover designers, e-book formatters, printers, distributors – everything you need to polish and produce and distribute your book so it is easy for your readers to find and to buy. There are many ways to publish, but that is not really the focus of this tip. What’s important to know is how to recognize the point in the creative process where you bring in your team to publish. You know it’s time to publish when you read your manuscript, and you see that image clearly reflected back to you that initially inspired you to go through all of...

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Element 6 of the Creative Process: Pruning

Element 6 of the Creative Process: Pruning

Posted by on Aug 7, 2014 in Tips | 0 comments

Video Content: Have you ever wondered when the best time is to involve an editor in your writing process? Hi, this is Amanda Rooker, Executive Editor at SplitSeed, and today’s tip is number six in our series on the creative process. Element number six is pruning. If you have herbs or fruit trees in your garden, you know the importance of pruning. Herbs grow best when you pinch back the tops and allow the leaves to keep growing; otherwise they will quickly go to seed and stop investing their growth energy in producing the fruit or the produce that you want—which, in the case of herbs, is leaves. The same is true for fruit trees; it is important to prune excess branches off of fruit trees so they can shift their energy into growing the fruit rather than just using all of their growth energy into growing new branches. The same principle applies to us as we write books. We need to prune our writing in order to produce the best fruit in the form of our book. The leaner our writing can get, the more likely it is that our readers won’t have to use most of their thinking energy merely to understand what we are saying, but if they can easily understand what we are saying, they can instead focus their energy on applying it to their lives. That’s how ideas actually take root and bear fruit in readers’ lives, which is what all of us want as authors. It’s why we write our books in the first place, to help our readers make real change. So, what does pruning look like? Perhaps the best word for pruning is revising. This might be when you consider bringing in a writing coach or an editor to help you compare the current state of your manuscript to the initial image you had for your idea in the first place, and help you determine where and what to prune.  But if you have a clear vision of that central image for your book, you can absolutely do your own pruning. Here’s how: when your draft is complete, simply take a...

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Element 5 of the Creative Process: Weeding

Element 5 of the Creative Process: Weeding

Posted by on Jul 24, 2014 in Tips | 1 comment

Video Content: Are you in the thick of your writing process, but find yourself losing energy as you’re writing? Hi, I’m Amanda Rooker, Executive Editor at SplitSeed, and today’s writing tip is Element 5 in our series on the creative process. Element 5 is weeding. If you’ve been following our tips on the creative process, you might be wondering, When do I actually get to write? I’ve got all these different practices that I’m doing in my life, but none of them are actually about the writing process. What I usually tell writers is that you know you’re ready to start writing your first draft when you can see the concept of your book as a full, single image in your head. For some of you that image may have appeared right when you got the seed of the idea. In that instant, you could see the full picture of what your book was going to be about, in which case that would be a great time to start writing. For some of you, you might have received the full image gradually, perhaps as you spent more time with the Source as time went on. Either way, I’d encourage you to start writing whenever you have that clear image of your full book concept visible in your imagination. Usually by the time we get to Element 5 in the creative process, most people have a clear, single image for their book process, which means most people are writing their first draft. They’re in the thick of growing their idea. So, to follow our analogy with gardening, the plant has broken through the surface of the soil, and it is starting to visibly grow. Now, if you have ever gardened, you also know that if a plot of soil regularly receives plenty of sun and water, other things besides the seeds you plant will also grow—in other words, weeds. So it is very important to be diligent about visiting your garden and pulling out the weeds that can threaten to choke out the growth you have so carefully nurtured so far. The same is true for the creative process. For...

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Element 4 of the Creative Process: Water

Element 4 of the Creative Process: Water

Posted by on Jul 17, 2014 in Tips | 0 comments

Video Content: When you are working on your creative projects, do you find yourself using only your brain and forget that you also have a body? Hi, this is Amanda Rooker, Executive Editor at SplitSeed, and today’s writing tip is the fourth in our series on the eight elements of the creative process. And today’s element is water. But first, I’d like to back up a little bit and review the first three elements of the creative process, because today with the fourth element we are making a bit of a shift. Element 1 was spend time in the garden. Element two was the seed of your idea. Element three was the sun, or spending time with the source. Now each of those elements were primarily about being. They are either about noticing something, receiving something, or just basking in the presence of something. They weren’t much about doing. With element number four, we are making a shift into doing, which may be a relief to some of you. Back to the fourth element, which is water. In a garden, plants need water almost more than anything else. And this is something that the gardener has complete control over. It is up to the gardener how much water the plants get. Water, for us as creative thinkers and as writers, includes the self-care practices that we do to take care of our bodies, because our body, our mind, and our spirit are all connected. They all support each other. As we are writing, we can’t forget about our body, even as we use our mind and our spirit. Self-care practices include exercise, eating a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, spending time with friends—all of those things that take care of yourself that begin with the body and then extend out to support your mind and spirit as well. For the creative process, getting enough rest is so crucial. Spending social time with loved ones is important. And spending time away from your creative work is important. So as you are working on your book, make sure that you remember that you are not just a brain, you also have...

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