Are you prepared to be lucky?

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“Your creative endeavors can never be thoroughly mapped out ahead of time. You have to allow for the suddenly altered landscape, the change in plan, the accidental spark – and you have to see it as a stroke of luck rather than a disturbance of your perfect scheme. Habitually creative people are, in E.B. White’s phrase, ‘prepared to be lucky.'” — Twyla Tharp; The Creative Habit

We have been reading The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp for the L&R Book Club this month and it is *so* fascinating to be thinking about creative work while I am testing the waters of writing fiction. This is a new-ish creative workspace for me, and figuring out what skills I need to work on and what methods work best for me and how I can more fully get the most out of my ideas … It’s all part of my everyday thinking.

I think a lot.

I plan a lot.

I feel like my planning is what allows me to be ‘lucky’. I create this structure, this scaffolding as a place to welcome ideas. So when a perfectly worded conversation between 2 characters pops into my head I’m ready. Or when some random topic rolls across my line of vision I know exactly how it can fit into to my next story idea.

Want to know how you can prepare to be lucky?

get luckyWrite down ideas every day

Be interested in a variety of topics

Always have SOMETHING with which to take notes.

Have a set working time (and be consistent)

Don’t judge the inspiration when it does come to you (there’s nothing wrong with getting an idea from a billboard or trashy reality show).

Don’t compare yourself to others. Or do anything else that can affect your confidence.

How do you prepare to be lucky?

It is worth noting that I did a few different online searches and could not find the original E.B. White quote she is referring to. Which I assume means that “prepared to be lucky” is a paraphrase.

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  • Angie June 17, 2014 at 11:09 am edit

    I just made a comment on Kam’s blog about carrying something with which to take notes! I also sit down and go through what inspires me, for instance I love Avatar: The Last Airbender, especially its beautiful art. So when I need a boost of inspiration, I’ll watch how the design was sketched out. I will also browse a visually stimulating website like deviantART, or listen to music that helps me draw or write. I love preparing to be lucky!

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  • Barbara Eads June 17, 2014 at 11:41 am edit

    I prepare to be lucky with a positive attitude. I always think I’m lucky and I usually am!

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  • Monique June 19, 2014 at 9:22 pm edit

    Just discovered your blog via Elise Gets Crafty podcast! Really loving your articles! These are great suggestions, I have recently moved from my iphone calendar to a filofax and find I always have paper to write on now which is an added bonus I hadn’t really thought through! And sometimes I think I am interested in too many topics!!

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