Happy Anniversary to my creative self. One year ago, I traveled to Santa Fe, New Mexico, to participate in a writers conference called “The Creative Reboot.”
Several aspects of this conference drew me to register. The amazing location, the opportunity to meet Julia Cameron and the focus on creativity.
Santa Fe is one of my favorite places to visit. It carries the atmosphere of spirituality coupled with history and art.
A great resource that describes the foundations of Santa Fe is the novel, “Death Comes for the Archbishop” by Willa Cather.
The presence of multiple diversities gives Santa Fe its beauty. I met people from all over the world and developed a special relationship with a woman from the Pueblo tribe.
The merchants of Santa Fe take time to visit with customers, sit down for a cup of coffee and truly listen to the needs of lonely hearts.
One waitress in my favorite eatery, the Santa Fe Bite, described the stories behind her multiple bracelets. As a bling woman, I showed her my rings, and we immediately connected.
The architecture of Santa Fe is definitely Southwestern design — no vintage cottages or brick Tudors. But I love the adobe walls, the curved corners and the terracotta color everywhere.
The main presenter at the conference was Julia Cameron. Several years ago, I read “The Artist’s Way” which opened my heart to the joy of being a creative.
Whether writing, decorating my seasonal mantel or choosing what to wear each day, my joy of being a creative comes directly from Julia and her books.
I was surprised to find her such a petite lady. Don’t we always think of our she-roes as bigger than life, tall and broad? A powerful visual.
Yet I eclipsed her in height. She graciously accepted my request for a photo and answered several of my questions.
I discovered that she — like me — writes her first drafts in long hand, letting the words flow slowly as the creativity forms a boundary around her words.
Julia challenged me to return to the morning pages and to be more intentional about my artist dates. Her workshops were more than two hours long but felt like 20 minutes. She was humble, intelligent and humorous.
Meeting her in person was one of the towering moments in my creative history.
The Creativity Focus:
Everything I did that week focused on nurturing my creativity, and I added two extra days to my vacation week so I could take advantage of each moment.
- Leisurely walks in a multitude of art galleries and boutiques
- The taste of new foods, always spiced with green chiles
- Interesting conversations with other writers and the people I met throughout Santa Fe
- A walking tour that opened my eyes to more of the history of the region
- The novel I began that week and how the main character popped into my head in my quiet motel room
- Afternoons listening to Hispanic bands in the Plaza gazebo
- Celebrating with a wedding party who marched out of the Saint Frances Cathedral and around the Plaza. I didn’t know any of the people but applauded and cheered for their excitement.
- Choosing a special ring — yes, another ring — that included the gems of turquoise, coral and spiny oyster
- The memories of a research trip to Santa Fe in 2010 with my best friend, Deb Mosher
Embracing my creativity underscores that I belong to the Creator who gifted me with the ability to think outside the box, create solutions to problems and enjoy the textures and colors around me.
All of us are creative. But sometimes we squelch those creative juices with self-doubt, self-sabotage and comparisonitis.
The Creative Reboot Conference was a highlight of my entire 2018. It added to my writing resume and my creative spirit.
I’m so glad I took the risk, stepped into that adventure and added a few extra days to nurture myself in Santa Fe.
Hope sometimes chases us with lovely circumstances and experiences. We just have to be aware of its presence and open our hearts to receive it.
©2019 RJ Thesman – All Rights Reserved
Check out my books on my Amazon Author Page. Then stay tuned for that novel I began in Santa Fe, “The Year of My Redemption,” scheduled for release in 2020.