Synopses & Reviews
All it takes to make creativity a part of your life is the willingness to make it a habit. It is the product of preparation and effort, and is within reach of everyone. Whether you are a painter, musician, businessperson, or simply an individual yearning to put your creativity to use, The Creative Habit
provides you with thirty-two practical exercises based on the lessons Twyla Tharp has learned in her remarkable thirty-five-year career.
In "Where's Your Pencil?" Tharp reminds you to observe the world — and get it down on paper. In "Coins and Chaos," she gives you an easy way to restore order and peace. In "Do a Verb," she turns your mind and body into coworkers. In "Build a Bridge to the Next Day," she shows you how to clean the clutter from your mind overnight.
Tharp leads you through the painful first steps of scratching for ideas, finding the spine of your work, and getting out of ruts and into productive grooves. The wide-open realm of possibilities can be energizing, and Twyla Tharp explains how to take a deep breath and begin...
"[An] exuberant, philosophically ambitious self-help book for the creatively challenged." The New York Times Book Review
"The Creative Habit emphasizes the work habits that lead to success." C. Carr, O: The Oprah Magazine
"Though its context is a choreographer's world, its principles are universally applicable and sound....It could change your life." Elizabeth Zimmer, The Village Voice
"Twyla Tharp's amazingly plain-spoken treatise...is a frank, honest, and tough-love testament essentially arguing that art and creativity are matters of hard, old-fashioned work." Sid Smith, The Chicago Tribune
"An entertaining 'how to' guide, andlt;iandgt;The Creative Habitandlt;/iandgt; isn't about getting the lightning bolt of inspiration, but rather the artistic necessity of old-fashioned virtues such as discipline, preparation and routine." andlt;BRandgt; andlt;BRandgt; -- Cathleen McGuigan, andlt;iandgt;Newsweekandlt;/iandgt;
"[A]s accessible, smart and eye-opening as her dance." andlt;BRandgt; andlt;BRandgt; -- Linda Winer, andlt;iandgt;Newsdayandlt;/iandgt;
"andlt;iandgt;The Creative Habitandlt;/iandgt; emphasizes the work habits that lead to success." andlt;BRandgt; andlt;BRandgt; -- C. Carr, andlt;iandgt;O: The Oprah Magazineandlt;/iandgt;
What makes a person creative? It's not just a dilemma for artists, or aspiring artists. Creativity enters into so many facets of everyday life — deciding what meal to cook, constructing a persuasive memo, or imparting knowledge to a child. In this straight-forward and life-changing book, Twyla Tharp shares the overriding lesson learned during her remarkable thirty-five-year career: creativity is not a mystery. It is not a gift from on high. It is the product of hard work and preparation, of knowing one's aims and one's subject, of learning from approaches taken in the past. Creativity is a habit, and it is within everyone's reach. The Creative Habit is both personal and practical, combining anecdotes from Tharp's life with easy and effective exercises that she uses when facing a creative rut. This inspiring, encouraging guide will show every reader — from the author facing a bad case of writer's block, to the business person looking to secure a deal — how to achieve his or her fullest creative potential.
One of the worldand#8217;s leading creative artists, choreographers, and creator of the smash-hit Broadway show, andlt;Iandgt;Movinand#8217; Outandlt;/Iandgt;, shares her secrets for developing and honing your creative talentsand#8212;at once prescriptive and inspirational, a book to stand alongside andlt;Iandgt;The Artistand#8217;s Wayandlt;/Iandgt; and andlt;Iandgt;Bird by Bird.andlt;/Iandgt;
About the Author
Twyla Tharp, one of America's greatest choreographers, began her career in 1965, and in the ensuing years has created more than 130 dances for her company as well as for the Joffrey Ballet, the New York City Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, London's Royal Ballet, and American Ballet Theatre. Working to the music of everyone from Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart to Jelly Roll Morton, Frank Sinatra, and Bruce Springsteen, she is a pioneer in melding modern dance and ballet with popular music. In film, she collaborated with Milos Forman on Hair, Ragtime, and Amadeus. For television, she directed Baryshnikov by Tharp, which won two Emmy awards. For the Broadway stage, she directed the theatrical version of Singin' in the Rain, and in 2003 won a Tony Award for Movin' Out, which she conceived, directed, and choreographed to the songs of Billy Joel. She is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship. In 1993, she was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and in 1997 was made an honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She lives and works in New York City.
Table of Contents
1 I Walk into a White Room
2 Rituals of Preparation
3 Your Creative DNA
4 Harness Your Memory
5 Before You Can Think out of the Box, You Have to Start with a Box
7 Accidents Will Happen
10 Ruts and Grooves
11 An "A" in Failure
12 The Long Run