Monday, 6 October 2014

The How-To Art of Inspiration

Have you ever accidently pricked your finger with a sewing needle?

How about giving yourself a paper cut?

You've got to have done at least one of those, if not both, and probably quite often for the second.

Either way, I figure those moments are a bit like inspiration.

It doesn't come on a daily basis but when it does it's always unexpected, out-of-the-blue, and more than likely during a moment when you really don't have the time or energy to actually do much about it beyond more than treat it in the form of scribbling down some notes and then moving on with what you were doing.

Sometimes, yes, you have the time to properly treat it, to cover it with the bandage in the form of actually turning it into some sort of tangible product, but those instances, like the intial act itself are random and far between.

In short, you really cannot sit at a desk and command inspiration to come, any more than you can purposely give yourself a paper cut. Believe me, there was a rather morose and morbid day once when I did actually spend a portion of it fascinated by the evil science of paper giving you what must be the most painful incisions of the flesh, on the planet.

And so, in actuality, there is no how-to method of creating inspiration anymore than being able to give yourself a paper cut on command. Yes, you can train your brain to think creatively and think in such a way on the spot, but it's never going to be an easy hash of "I want to do this" and then sitting down an doing it.

Not to mention our imagination is a million times prettier than reality.

Reality states that dirt, grime and grunge are the colours of life. Needing to eat, being tired, having a head-ache and greasy hair. All part of being human.

And it sucks. It really, truly sucks.

Plus there's that thing called emotions which play into inspiration and when that inspiration doesn't come to a fruitious conclusion of fireworks and fancy-dress parties for the rich and famous, well, good-bye to your happy mood.

There are over six billion humans on this planet. You and your ideas are not in any way unique or special. I had a boy in class the other day tell me his idea of how his character would have a total psychological breakdown full of all sorts of terrifiying an bizarre experiences...only to wake up. It would all have been a dream. He thought it was brilliant. I told him, sorry, but that is the utter *last* thing he should be attempting for his GCSE writing. That plot is just about the most overdone, taboo and generally lazy ass methods of making a "twist" ending than there ever has been.

But he thought he was special.

I had a guy in a cafe this past weekend joke that I might be writing the next manuscript to land a place in the Wren Library in Cambridge. Probably because I was scribbling my experiences and thoughts from that day, like an utter maniac. Doesn't mean it was, or is, anything special. I have a friend who has seriously one of the most screwed up families I have ever known (in terms of friend relations) and yet, even she realised she has no right to complain any more than anyone else because there will always be someone worse off.

Just as there is always someone better.

I found out today that my school has put an ad up for the position I currently have, starting in January when my temporary contract, set up over summer, runs out. Namely, that means they are not willing to renew my contract for longer. Yes, I am allowed to apply, as much as the next person is, except, my currently challenges with being a hardbacked commander and showing exceptional behavioural management, is a massive black mark against me. And yet, every teacher is having issues, whether they are experienced, new, or the flipping behavioural management expert. Some of us have speculated it's due to the fact the school expanded by over 700 students, making it a grand total of 2000 on the same campus and three of the years are brand new to the school too.

Anyway, my point is, as depressing as it may be, sitting around and waiting for something awesome and groundbreaking to happen, isn't how squat happens. There is never going to be a good time. And even if you think you are in the wrong job, which I have always known to be true, even before I started teacher training, you have to do certain things to check the boxes of survival, to check the boxes of things you want to do and you cannot sit around for months at a time calculating what would be the best and most efficient use of your time and energy. You just have to go with whatevever options and knowledge of options that you have at the time and roll on.

Eight years ago, when I was smack in the middle of high school. The smartest option to me that didn't sound horrid (like getting into sciences or something) and that allowed me to be around what I loved (English literature) and to have time to do what I loved (travel and write), teaching was the way to go.

But these days, what with globalisation, you can pretty much invent your own job.

I haven't a clue what I'll be doing after December. Let alone eight years from this point. But what I do know is I cannot wait around for inspiration to strike. I have to just keep moving ahead and doing what I love, in any small way possible.

Who knows, I've always been fascinated by the power of imagination and rather like the sound of "the Imaginist."

Maybe I'll spend my days collecting ideas into a giant Library of Minds.

I'll be the World's Singular Imaginist.

For now though, I'm just an overseas trained teacher attempting to keep her head above water so that she might continue to experience living in another country for a good long while yet.

There are too many stories to be told and very little timely motivation.

But that's a whole other kettle of carrots.

Until next time, I challenge you to pull blood from your fingertips and make something your own.

Putting my stamp in a little corner.

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