While on the plane heading from Philadelphia to New Orleans for my first ever visit to attend Jazz Fest with friends, I was perusing the in flight mag called American Way- since my carrier is American Airlines. Being a writer, editor and former publisher, I always read the Editor’s Note to see what’s what in the rest of the publication. This one grabbed me instantly because the human subject was is one of my favorite songwriters- Neil Young. The journalist, Adam Pitluck was sharing an experience he had while listening to erstwhile rather raunchy radio host Howard Stern. Howard’s guest was the iconic Mr. Young. Howard asked a natural question about his songwriting process.
“Do you spend hours a day sitting in a room alone somewhere waiting for inspiration? When Neil Young is creating, how does it happen?”
The response that had me nodding my head in agreement was ” Whatever I’m doing, if I have an idea, I stop what I’m doing and I do that.”
Call it creative ADHD if you like, but it works for me. If my attention is lured away by The Muse, I need to heed the call, or the ideas sometimes slip into oblivion. If I am somewhere sans computer, I jot down the thought on whatever paper is handy. I have been known to use napkins, paper bags, my iPhone or appointment book. When inspiration strikes, who am I to shoo it away?
As I am writing this, I am standing at a charging station at the Charlotte, NC airport waiting for the next flight. This writer’s life is exceptional. Here I am, doing what I love, writing slice of life stories for my pleasure and hopefully yours. I am taking you along the journey with me and you didn’t need to pack a bag, buy a ticket or leave the comfort of home. We creative souls are blessed to be the ‘hollow reeds’ through which insights flow.
When I travel, I prepare well so that I can be spontaneous if the need arises. I smile at and have conversations with cool people. This flight from Philly to Charlotte was short and I combined power napping and being to read a newly published book written by my friends Mali Apple and Joe Dunn, called The Soulmate Lover. I immersed myself in all kinds of juicy imaginings as I call in the Beloved who I know will show up from wherever he is at the moment.
Case in point …as I was writing those last few words, my attention was drawn by a large, fluffy four legged named Vinny. His person, Jackie informed me that he was a therapy cat who works with children on the autism spectrum and older adults. How could I miss this opportunity to have a conversation with the two of them? She asked me if I knew the music of Marcia Ball. I do. Not sure if she will be at Jazz Fest. Vinny posed prettily for a photo and then sauntered into his cozy carrier and Jackie and I hugged goodbye.
I am eager to see what writing prompts pop up throughout the week as I pay attention to the creative sparks that dance before me.