By Elsa Schieder

I woke up this morning with the words, don’t bite off more than you can chew, going through my head. But my dreams do, over and over, bite off way more than that. And I get pulled along. Lots of work, obstacles, learning. I’m not a quitter, but I’ve let go, time and again, only to come back and try again.

My question to you: how do you get along (or not) with your dreams? I’d love to hear.

In this case, I think the words came this morning because it’s almost time for me to get back to creative things. Like for many creative people, that’s my area of biggest dreams and biggest difficulties.

I’ve spent my whole life, when it comes to creative things, biting off more than I can chew. I was twelve when I wrote my first play, and still twelve when I wrote my first film script. The play was finally put on – in a family friend’s basement – two years later. The film script, loving reworked for several years, never made it onto the screen.

Right there, from those early works, I’ve come to the heart of what been hardest for me: to find a way to get the works out into the world.

I had a choice this morning. Regular words, everyday words – or a song/spoken word piece. I went for both choices – but first for the words strongest in my head, those with rhythm and drive.

There was yet another choice – to pay attention to the words in my head, or to ignore them and get on with my day.

I chose to let those words be part of my day, especially as I knew where they were coming from: the huge and daunting task I’ve set myself, to get more of My Chosen Home on the web, starting with the most ambitious single piece done so far, Summer’s Passing.

A bit of background. The goal is to bring alive the experience of being at home. What does it mean, to be at home, for different people?

I wrote a piece, on my own experience. Months later, listening to an electro acoustic piece by a friend, Mark Corwin, I started hearing more words in my head:

summer’s passing
and I’m having a blast
waiting for anything
waiting for nothing
not waiting
The words went on, trying to capture Mark’s experience of being at home in his back yard in late summer. I rummaged through my bag for paper and pencil, started writing.

That was, as usual, the easy part.

The journey has been a long one. An English and a French version. Photographs. Recordings – Mark’s voice for the English, mine for the French. Doing a mix. Creating an interactive piece where people can choose what to listen to (the mix, Mark’s original soundscape, just the voices). Working with Flash (a web design program with movement, animation, video).

The goal, the plan, the decision: next week, on my site, the current version of Summer’s Passing.

In the meantime, all the best to you in making your own dreams come true.

Comments are very welcome. How do you get along with your dreams? Do they drive you, lead you?


For more on this struggle, go to ELSA’S CREATIVITY BLOG. More on attempting to turn dreams, especially creative dreams, into reality. Note we don’t always how much we can chew, when we chomp off a big bite. Note also that Columbus certainly bit off more than most people could chew.

For a creative piece on this struggle, go to MY DREAMS AND I, a spoken word piece that came so easily – unlike getting creativity out into the world.



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Click and find ELSA’S CREATIVITY BLOG – entries on Being Gripped by the Creative Drive, The Dream of the Big Audience, Bored by Everyday Pleasures but Loving Creativity.

Click and find WORDS AND MUSIC – White Chocolate and Hot Fudge, Escape Velocity, Tank Almost Empty, Heavy Rain, The Echo of the Echo, Come Waste My Time, Don’t Bite Off More, Gap, Walking with John Lennon, Who Is This Person I Call Me, Match, Summer’s Passing.

Click and find MY CHOSEN HOME. Explorations of what it means to be at home.

Click and find THE FLUFFERS BOOK. Ghost dog, preteen girl, hit and run, questions about reality.

In the works: ZEE’S CAFE CAFE, a virtual word image and music emporium. Launch date: July 27, 2007, 7 pm EST.

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