My 2018 resolution can be summed up in one word: Yes. My friend, Ria, recently told me about an article she read in which the author explained that when you commit to saying yes, your day ends up in a completely different place than where it started. And I’m all for that. Yes to:
I’m going to make 2018 the best year of my life so far in every way. And I’m going to lift others as I rise. We’re doing this.
What I imagine is as real as anything I can touch. I’ve come to believe, and live by, the principle that if the human mind can imagine it, then the hands and heart can and will create it. It will take time, effort, and dedication, and it will happen. Creativity is the most powerful tool we have.
I’m so honored to be part of the second Creativity Loop created by my amazing friend, insanely talented poet, and Penn roommate, KaRyn. Her organization, Writers Writing Alone Together, puts together retreats for writers. This is the gorgeous package I received in the mail. Then I used this poem to inspire a work of my own creation that I sent on to the next person on the list. Excited to see what our loop builds together. In these crazy-ass times we’re living through, being able to express our creativity together is what keeps hope alive. I wish each of you a creative, imaginative day. To learn more about KaRyn’s retreats, check out http://bit.ly/wwatwoodsinterest.
“You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.” ~Robin Williams
As I’m deep in the job hunt at the start of this new chapter in my career, I’ve been thinking a lot about dreams. How big to make them, how long to chase them, and how much to give up for them. These are very personal questions, and there are no wrong or right answers save for this one exception: we are all entitled to them.
Dreams are the lifeblood and the bedrock of the human imagination. They need air and companionship as much as we do. Please don’t crumple them up and toss them into your sock drawer. You and your dreams deserve more than that; they deserve a shot.
I don’t know if you’ll ever be able to make your living from your dream. You may never even earn a single cent from them. And I don’t think that matters at all. Dreams are about much more than that. They are what keeps our creativity alive, and our creativity is the most important asset we have. If we lose the ability to dream, that little spark of madness that says “I think I can” against all odds, then life becomes very dull very quickly.
If I learned anything during a very tough week last week, it’s this: life is to be lived, fully, in every moment. That doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine and roses. Sometimes life feels downright impossible. Sometimes we struggle just to put one foot in front of the other. But that act of persistence, of pushing through against the odds, is the very essence of what it means to live. That is exactly the moment of our creative growth. It’s the most human thing we do—to go on.
It’s been said that there are an infinite number of parallel universes where every scenario of your life is currently in existence. That’s a pretty trippy thing to consider but today I’m going to let my mind expand and imagine that’s true. Makes things a little easier, doesn’t it?
I’m in my next round of edits with my publisher and we’re putting together the marketing plan. The cover art and illustrations are in progress. The question I most often get, of course, is “what is the book about?” Here’s a short, draft synopsis:
Thirteen-year-old Emerson wants to know who killed her mother, Nora, and why. Nora was a gifted anthropologist well known for her research on ancient cultures and languages. Five years ago, Nora was found dead on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. “We’ve never seen anything like it,” the NYPD’s spokesperson said. “Life has gone out of her with no explanation.” And with that, the police gave up their search for answers.
But Emerson didn’t. Her journey to discover the answers about her mother’s death takes her deep below the street of New York City on a dangerous adventure into a secret world of books where the very existence of human imagination is at stake. She must survive and thrive a battery of mental, emotional, and physical challenges if she is to fulfill her destiny, protect everyone she loves, and continue her mother’s legacy. If Emerson fails, human creativity and imagination will cease to exist.
Time is running out. A dangerous threat looms large and too close to home as Emerson must choose between fulfilling the last promise she made to her mother and ensuring that the human capacity for creativity is preserved forever. Will she defy her mother’s final wish or sacrifice the only living family she has left?
So excited to share this podcast episode that I did with the Lit to Lens podcast team about my book, Where the Light Enters.
“Podcast Season 1, Episode 4 – SPECIAL EDITION: Interview with author Christa Avampato”
Hello there LTLiens,
This post is a bit late, but exciting nonetheless. In case you aren’t up to date, about a month ago we interviewed the author Christa Avampato about her debut novel Where the Light Enters.
The novel is about a young teenage girl, who goes by the name Emerson Page, living in New York city on a mission to find out who killed her mother. The young adult genre novel covers everything from magical libraries, the power of manipulating light, to the struggles of growing up without a mother.
In the interview Christa covers everything from how she became such an avid writer, who inspires her, to what it’s like trying to get your first novel published and pushed out to the real world.
Take a moment to listen to Christa tell her exciting story.
*We will provide updates to this post once more good news is heard…fingers crossed!
My Facebook feed is filled with friends who are angry, sad, frustrated, confused, and at a complete loss about why there is so much senseless killing happening. I am, too. I worry about what kind of world we’re leaving for our children, and then I read this article from Time about a 10-year-old-girl named Eva who lives in Paris. She was granted a PhD level fellowship. Her pitch was: “The streets of Paris are sad. I want to build a robot that will make them happy again. I’ve already started learning how to code on Thymio robots, but I have trouble making it work. I want to join the program so the mentors can help me.”
Yes, technology can isolate us. It can also be used to build a better, kinder, happier, and safer world. And I think that if we begin to think about technology the way that Eva does, we’ll be able to build a better world together, a world in which every life matters.
I snapped this photo in Trinidad, a city in central Cuba that is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It was late at night and the only light that flowed onto the street was from his studio. He was hard at work despite the late hour, and that resonates with me. We create when and where we can, and it’s often in these quiet, solitary moments that we can most clearly channel our inspiration and get it all down so that we might share it with the world.
I love to see artists at work in their environments because the location invariably has some impact on the art. Is an artist trying to create his way out of an unfortunate situation? Is she inspired by what surrounds her as she creates? Does he create in spite of the environment or because of it? I love art for this reason: there are always more questions.
I am so honored to have been interviewed for the podcast, RelatE, a project from The Relational Economy. I talk about creativity, the imagination, writing, art, business, theater, education, my education at Penn and Darden (especially the work I’m doing with Ed Freeman), my travels, service, family, yoga, and meditation. Listen, share, repeat! I’d love to hear your thoughts, ideas, and questions. My virtual door is always open to all of you, and I look forward to the conversation. Click here: http://therelationaleconomy.com/podcast/interview-with-creative-business-professional-christa-avampato/