Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Q and A with Steven Pressfield

Steven Pressfield, author of The War of Art, found my little blog and offered to do a short Q and A on here for your lovely readers. You might remember my notes on the book here - seriously, the book is kick butt inspiration for dreaming and working towards your dream. Check out Steve's Writing for Wednesdays series - a ton more inspiration for the creatives [in other words, all of you.]

OK - onto the questions and answers...

1 – If you could narrow down one habit of action to beat the Resistance, what would it be?
When Steven Soderbergh won his Best Directing Oscar, this is what he said in his speech: "Here's to everybody who puts in even one hour a day pursuing their art and their dream." I second this completely. Action. Doing something every day, no matter how little. Momentum and steady progress. If you think about it, one hour a day 300 days a year equals almost eight weeks of work (a work day equaling 8 hours). That's not nothing. That's for real.

2 – On the surface, your book The War of Art seems to be targeted to artists, writers, painters. But my hunch is that there is some of that within all of us - a dream to create. Share a bit about your perspective about creativity being latent in every person and how people awaken that.
You're right, Tony. My original title for WOA was "The Writer's Life." I thought the ideas would apply only to writers. My editor changed it to "War of Art," trying to expand its applicability to all artists. But once the book got out and I started getting responses, I saw that even that was way too narrow. Entrepreneurs, moms, philanthropist, you name it ... creativity is across the board in all fields of endeavor and Resistance seems to rear its ugly head in all of them. The same principles of "turning pro" or any other method of overcoming this demon seem to apply to all.

3 – What would be one piece of advice you could give to students [college, high school, even younger] who are trying to find their true calling?
That's a great question, Tony. I can only answer it for me. That activity that elicits the most Resistance ... that's the one that's our true calling. The thing that scares the living bejesus out of you, that's the one. The one we avoid the most, the one we make up the most excuses for ditching, the one we're most heavily in denial of ... that's the one.

Thanks for your insights Steve! Here's to all of us overcoming the Resistance.

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