January 26, 2011


Posted in Transitions tagged at 11:03 am by Rebecca Hein

In cello playing, some components of technique are thought to be harder than others, and one such skill is changing the bow smoothly. Teachers focus on this a lot, and while a student may progress as a result of this direct work, it’s always better to induce spontaneous improvement.

In writing, transitions are the equivalent of bow changes. I struggled with transitions for years until I established the habit of extensive practice writing. This appeared unrelated to smooth transitions, but practice writing has brought fluency which in turn has propelled me through all parts of my narratives with greater ease. So I no longer struggle so much with transitions nor tackle them directly; rather, they are a result of flow.


January 19, 2011

Creativity and Freedom, Part Four

Posted in Creativity tagged , at 10:11 am by Rebecca Hein

Freedom in creativity isn’t as disorderly as it sounds. Total improvisation as we work through a piece of writing may feel scary, and it’s certainly unpredictable, yet the creative process sustains itself.

If we step aside from our conscious minds, listening instead to instinct and its subtle lessons, our own inventiveness will generate order and coherence on a far higher scale than anything our most organized attempts can produce.

January 12, 2011

Creativity and Freedom, Part Three

Posted in Creativity tagged , at 10:08 am by Rebecca Hein

The problem with a plan, even a good one, is that it shuts out other possibilities. Once we’ve decided on the direction of a given writing project, we may produce something good, but if we jettison our plan a major insight may await us—one that will make the piece substantially better.

This isn’t as chaotic as it sounds because the creative process, if we stay out of the way, carries within itself the keys to order and coherence.

Creativity and Freedom, Part Two

Posted in Creativity, Improvisation tagged at 10:00 am by Rebecca Hein

Improvisation is the heart of creativity. While there’s nothing wrong with structure, especially when it emerges from a lucky accident, to impose order seems to skew the process.

It’s better to invent your procedure as you go, because then you’re inviting a better possibility than you may have yet thought of.

January 10, 2011

Special Announcement: Peak Experiences in Writing

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:06 am by Rebecca Hein

Announcing a one-day writing seminar, on Saturday January 29, via telephone conference call. We’ll meet from 11:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Eastern, with a 90 minute break from 1:30-3:00 p.m. The topic is Peak Experiences in Writing.

The morning will be spent on critiques of your work, and the afternoon on a long, thorough discussion of what peak experiences are and how you can induce them. In brief, peak experiences are those sublime moments when you suddenly realize that you’re doing better than your best, and you have no idea how you achieved it.

The registration deadline is Saturday January 15, and enrollment is limited to the first 8 people who sign up. For more information, contact me at rhein@vcn.com or 1-888-921-9595.


Becky Hein

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