destroy to create

You must always be willing to start all over again. This website was something different before this. If you really want to know (and aren't comfortable with time machines), it was an attempt at my own corner of currated delights and oddities, not unlike some of my favourite websites. But my heart was never really in it.

So what do you do when you accumulate a substantial amount of work (the site had over a hundred posts) and it no longer works?

These things we make build up a momentum, even if it's bad momentum. It's hard to throw things away. That's why some of the most repeated writing advice is to "kill your darlings". It needs to be said over and over again to give those of us who like to create things the strength to say, "Enough's enough. This one can't be saved."

You need to be able to do that. It's freeing once the decision is made. And here's the really interesting thing: as you look back at that dead darling, you may even begin to understand it better than you ever did. You may find a use for it yet, even as it decomposes. And even if you don't, you'll realize how much you learned in the process of making it.

What they don't tell you about killing your darlings is you have to make them first. I suppose that seems obvious, but in the way the advice is usually presented, darlings come off as mistakes. They're not. They're an important part of the process. Hope you like writer's block if you try to stop making them entirely.

I think the trick might be to get better at making them. Make them quickly. Make them often. And then get better at putting them out of their misery.

So here's another attempt at a darling. Somewhere to keep track of my notes on creativity itself. Who knows? Maybe this one will live to a ripe old age...