“Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”

Fredrich Nietzsche

Remember the blizzard of 2015?

If you don’t, you weren’t anywhere near the east coast.

The region from Maine to Baltimore got hammered.  Hurricane force winds, severe damage to the Jersey shore, tons of snow, blinding conditions, followed by extreme cold.  The works.

The last day of the blizzard the winds turned offshore.  Which means basically nothing to anyone not viscerally tied to the sea.  But for surfers along the New England coast, the conditions became epic.

Needless to say, it remained a bit on the chilly side.  Not to mention frigid winds and blinding snow.  Four governors declared states of emergencies and told everyone to stay indoors.

On that day, videographer James Katsipis filmed four Montauk surfers having the time of their lives in twelve to fifteen foot Long Island waves.  The resulting video has gone viral, especially after Pearl Jam rendered ‘Rain On Me’ by The Who for the soundtrack.  The Vimeo link is https://vimeo.com/118156877.  But in case that is down, search for ‘Juno’ by James Katsipis and Tauk Is Cheap Productions.  The view is somewhat blurred at times by the blizzard, but for some of us that only adds spice to the mix.

Sometimes you just have to let your creative passion rule the day.  Forget logic.  Bundle up all the reasons why you don’t have either the time or the space for insanity.  Circular file the lot.

And just go a little nuts.

Over the past four years, I have written two complete novels for which I have no publisher.  They are so far removed from my ‘brand’, the all-defining box in which my commercial success is maintained, that no publisher in their right mind would handle these things with fire-proof gloves and tongs.  I have another four novels for which I have written the initial forty to sixty pages.  Same thing.  Totally outside the bounds of commercial logic.

The only rational explanation is, six cases of temporary creative madness.

They are all, in my opinion, solid ideas.  They all carry the potential of powerful stories.  And I wanted to write enough of each to see how they felt on the page.  In two cases, this meant finished scripts.

Of course I hope someday to see them bound and out there and read by millions.  But that isn’t the point.  The issue today, here in this moment, is allowing the creative impulse free rein.  Regardless of all the reasons not to let the genie out of the box.  These six stories have helped me rise to the next level.  Of that I am certain.  Forcing myself to grow in areas which have no foundation in logic or commercial success have also permitted me the chance to explore new structures in character, dialogue, pacing, and so forth.

And they were a lot of fun.  Even in the dark hours when I knew that, seen from a commercial standpoint, the time was wasted.  The stories were bound to remain orphans.

But still.

Sometimes you just have to trek through the blinding snow.  Down to where the surf pounds the shore.  And paddle out.

DO THIS NOW:

  • What is the concept that you’ve been dreaming of, the one that just doesn’t fit anything or anywhere?  The idea that just won’t let go?
  • How much time could you possibly afford to give this crazy, illogical notion?  Be honest.  An hour, a day, a month, whatever. 
  • Accept that it doesn’t matter how much or how little time you can give this insane concept.  Doing it at all is an achievement.
  • Go have fun.
  • When the time is done, put your craziness back in the drawer. 
  • Some of them, like very fine wine, will astonish you when you return to them in a week or month or year or decade.  They will explode in your senses. 
  • Or not.  And therein lies the secret.
  • What is important is that for this brief spell you have danced to the music no one else can hear.

 

 

 

 

Davis Bunn’s next novel MIRAMAR BAY is available now at wherever books are sold. Don’t forget to order your copy today!

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