Saturday, April 10, 2010

What do Kathleen Norris and Elizabeth Gilbert have in common?

I watched this great video of Elizabeth Gilbert, author of "Eat, Pray, Love," and I loved it. I recommend you watch it - if you don't have time, watch the video and skip this post! She talks about creativity as connection with the divine other, not purely self-generated. And what does this have to do with Kathleen Norris? In her book, "Acedia and me," she describes falling into "a trap that ensnares many novice poets, writing only when I was depressed" (51). Our life's work, our calling to write, to create, is not a death sentence.
We all know writing is, in huge part, discipline. But there is another element, one Gilbert identifies as genius or daemon, and Norris identifies as faith in God. The divine spark that we must harness and work in harmony with.

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