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January 11, 2012

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Very cogent piece--thanks. I appreciate the recognition of the 'dark side' of creativity, but also the obstacles to sharing via social media posed by the pressure to present a positive brand. It recently occurred to me that our online presences, our brands, constitute a performance, and that we seek 'payment' from our audience in terms of attention--retweeting our content, visiting our site, buying from us. Including 'struggling, confused creator in the midst of messy process' as part of our show could be very helpful; audience 'payment' could be supportive debate. That 'payment' might not, however, be consonant with other forms of attention we might desire.

Bob, I think you're right about our online presences being a form of performance and that including the struggling sides of our creative work could expand on that. If we think about it, some of the best "art" is about showing the darker sides of ourselves and what we experience, so why can't we do the same for our creative selves?

I will say that when I've shared on this blog those times when I've been confused or in a dark place, I've tended to get a lot of great, supportive feedback and discussion. So I think it's worth sharing. I think it's about getting over the shame and anxiety you feel and being willing to make yourself vulnerable. Which is really what the most creative stuff is about anyway!

Thanks for commenting and keeping the discussion going, Bob.

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