Writing Club Recharges Adults' Creative Batteries

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), November 29, 2002 | Go to article overview

Writing Club Recharges Adults' Creative Batteries


Byline: Oliver Andresen

"What is your experience with the creative process when you sit down to write?" I asked the members of the Northwest Writers' Club, which meets the third Monday of every month at 7:30 p.m. in the Elk Grove Public Library.

"As I begin to write, the characters are so real, I feel as though I know them, how they are dressed and all their problems," said Geri Conrad, a published writer of children's literature. Conrad lives in Schaumburg.

"I need an idea to get me going. But once it comes, I sleep on it. Then I sit down and let it flow," said Gene McDougall, a published writer of humorous non-narrative fiction. He lives in Arlington Heights.

"When it's really working, it'll just flow - like a magical artistic instinct," said John O'Brien, a published poet who reads poetry professionally, particularly for kids. O'Brien lives in Hoffman Estates.

All the above observations confirm what most artists experience - that creativity is a process beyond the customary actions of the human brain. Some know it as an inborn power of a Higher Self. Others know it as a supernatural gift, perhaps from an angel or even God.

And creativity is not just a talent for writers. When the Emperor Joseph II of Austria, asked Mozart when he was going to write the symphony he had promised, Mozart replied, "It's already done, Sire - in my head." Mozart is probably the best composer of classical music of all time.

Being advised to discard a huge block of marble because it contained an enormous flaw, Michelangelo disposed of the advice instead. "The statue is already there," he replied casually looking at the stone. "With the help of God and my hammer and chisel, I will release it." The result was the statue of David, Michelangelo's most outstanding creation. It still towers majestically in Florence.

And of course, big business, knowing well the value of creative thinking as a source for new and improved products and processes, has studied the phenomenon. …

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