page 314 if we like what we are creating

“If we like what we are creating we don’t need to know why.” — Rick Rubin, The Creative Act, page 314

  • Why do I want to know why, ever? It seems to be attached to the past via our motivations and the future in our plans. It’s never in the now, and making things is only in the present.

  • And for me, the future, well, UGH. Making plans is the kiss of death for my creativity. (If it isn’t for you, well, then, enjoy that.) It’s a spell I cast upon myself. Quite likely a curse. I know because I’ve done it over and over. Heck, I tried it this week! It always seems like a great idea that will finally give me the certainty I think I need. But it doesn’t work.

  • Instead the world of making mocks my rationality. It refuses to work — in such a predictable way that you'd think it might lead me to be smarter next time. I am not. But it waits for me to land back at the only truth that matters: Finding what I desire and following it. Finding a vein of curiosity and seeing where it takes me. That’s what ultimately leads to making something I love that didn’t exist before. And that’s it. That’s the whole thing. That’s the simple slippery goal.

  • Do I like this shape? This line? This color? What has a little spark? What gives me chills? When I put X next to Z, do I smile? When my work is going well, holding X next to Z is the only thing that matters. Why doesn’t enter into it because I’ve replaced it with something else, not because I’ve banished it. It’s just not the time. Why does not help us here and now.

The Creative re-Action:

Responding to Rick Rubin's "The Creative Act"

Is just that. I open the book at random. I read a sentence. I respond to it.