Marissa Lingen (mrissa) wrote,
Marissa Lingen
mrissa

Creative urges

ellarien said something in comments a few days ago that made me want to respond in more than a comment, and then lj went down and I didn't end up doing it. Here's what she said, in response to something I said about leaving physics:

That resonates with me, in an odd way. About ten years ago, I was getting far more satisfaction out of writing than I was out of my research job, and I seriously considered giving it all up and trying to write full time. I actually spent six months doing each half-time, and then found a new research job where I was much happier. I've done less and less writing since then, and found that I can more or less pacify the creative urge by crocheting instead. It's interesting to hear from someone who took the other fork, as it were.

And what I want to say is: I don't apparently have a creative urge. I believe that some people do, that some people have the need to create something, and can pacify that need by creating a wide variety of things. I am not, however, in that category. I have a writing urge, specifically a fiction urge. Occasionally I also have a baking urge and a cooking urge. But not a generalized creative urge: if I have a fiction urge, making a pan of muffins won't help, and painting won't help, and I'm fairly convinced that other things wouldn't help, either.

I keep thinking I should learn to knit or crochet because, or so my hindbrain tells me, then I would know how to do something useful. (More likely then my hindbrain would reclassify knitting and crocheting as non-useful.) I have no intention to learn, however, because I don't want to give my brain another set of urges and another set of projects to fuss about finishing.

I'm wondering: how many of you have a need to make stuff and find it can be handled in a wide variety of ways depending on what you have readily available? And how many of you have one specific or a handful of specific things you feel the need to make? Does it feel significantly different to you to do one creative task than another, in terms of what it satisfies in your head?
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