Minding the Muse
A Handbook for Painters, Composers, Writers, and Other Creators
by Priscilla Long
One hundred and twelve pages of pure creative gold are here for the taking. No matter the form your creative gifts take, there’s something in Minding the Muse that will excite, motivate, clarify, or entertain you. Priscilla Long is a Seattle-based author and teacher of writing who draws on her own experiences as well as of those of her students and well-known writers and artists.
The book begins simply enough by discussing the topic of learning how to work. Many creatives put so many conditions on their work that they never get around to actually writing or drawing, painting, singing, etc. Long has solutions for that.
From there, we’re taken on a ride through the creative processes everyone faces with ideas and examples given from many different artists, some famous and others less so. A few concepts covered are what you do when completing your work, keeping track of your accomplishments, sharing with your peers, and even becoming a public figure.
Reference to other works are given as well as “questions to contemplate” at the end of each chapter. It is very clear that Long has not only worked through many issues herself but has been involved in the processes through students and colleagues. This is all to our benefit.
This isn’t a large book in size. There are no extra words or thoughts that don’t need to be there. It’s a book you’re likely to read more than once as you face various issues in your work. Whether just beginning your career or already far along but wanting some new inspiration, Minding the Muse will serve you well and it would make an excellent gift for the creative friends and family in your life.