Photo of pelican swimming across a lake

You Might Be Alone

Welcome back to the Creative Life Adventure. There is a romanticized image of the lonely artist, the tortured soul who courageously clings to a solitary vision while remaining misunderstood by the ignorant masses. Ayn (“Ayn the Pain”) Rand created an entire long-winded novel, The Fountainhead, around this image. The lonely artist is often portrayed in…

Photo of partial page from print edition of Les Miserables by Victor Hugo.

Insightful Examples of Inciting Incidents

Welcome back to the Creative Life Adventure. I've been thinking a lot lately about inciting incidents and the different ways they can be used in fiction. An inciting incident generally launches the primary conflict or action in a story. Joseph Campbell referred to the inciting incident as a call to action. Sometimes our characters seek…

Diagram of arrow pointing from a point labeled A to a point labeled B

You Can Get There From Here

Welcome back to the Creative Life Adventure. I recently read George Michelsen Foy's 2016 book Finding North: How Navigation Makes Us Human. It deals with physical navigation and how our approach to navigation has changed over time. On a deeper level, it's a meditation on how we humans find our way in life and how…

Billowing smoke from incense

Out of Thin Air

Welcome back to the Creative Life Adventure. It's easy to think of creativity as an act of creating something out of thin air. A novel, a painting, a sculpture; these are all tangible products that didn't exist until they were created. We shouldn't believe that creativity is always about making something up, however. Sometimes, it's…

Selection from one page of Mary Beard's book The Fires of Vesuvius: Pompeii Lost and Found

You Must Read

Welcome back to the Creative Life Adventure. Currently I'm reading The Fires of Vesuvius: Pompeii Lost and Found by scholar and classicist Mary Beard. Pompeii is briefly referenced in my current writing-project-in-progress, so I'm reading about the city primarily for research. Fundamentally, however, I'm reading a well-researched book by a respected historian about life in…

Cropped section of Buddy and Thomas novella cover showing illustration of a beagle on a city street

Create When You Can

Welcome back to the Creative Life Adventure. I recently self-published a novella that I started writing in 2017. It was inspired by the life (and death, in early 2017) of a dog that I adopted from a shelter in 2002. It's called Buddy and Thomas, and it's about a stubborn dog that disrupts the life…