Last week was about creative crisis.
This week is about creative subjects — subjects that make you put yourself in the hopeless situation of creating something.
One way to channel a subject is not to think about it. Einstein had a way of doing that. He remembered a quote from his favorite philosopher:
A man can do what he wills, but he cannot will what he wills.
-Arthur Schopenhauer, 1839
We don’t will ourselves to like a subject, we’re simply aware of it at first. In my teens I thought public radio was boring, but the more I listened the more I learned, and the more I learned the more interested I was.
Creative subjects are like that; all we have to do is observe. Our interests start small and positive spirals take over. The longer we observe the more interested we get, in a virtuous circle.
We love what it feels like when someone brings up a topic we know something about. In that moment, we’re part of an exclusive club and we react with a spontaneous smug smile of satisfaction.™️
™️Mrs. Albee, Ninth Grade Social Sciences Teacher, Hudson High School (ⓒ 1993)
☝️“Realizing we know something is one of life’s simple joys”
We don’t write about new interests, we write about new forms of old interests.
I’ve been curious about certain subjects for a long time, and I’ve only now started to recognize the threads they have in common:
DECISION AND PERSUASION
SERVICE AND CITIZENSHIP
What threads do your interests have in common? How would you visualize them?
Send me a note! 🤜🤛
And check out the new about page of the Everybody Letter, Version 1, with a bonus roar!