Archive for Creativity


Theme, 2 of Cups. Cups is the element of Water in the realm of heart, emotions, dreams, intuition and creativity. Two is often a number of partnership and collaboration. This week, look for opportunities to collaborate in your creative work because it has the power to strengthen and enlarge your work. That might mean working on a project with someone, or working with an editor, agent or gallery owner. Not the week to go it alone.

Focus, The Wheel. This Major Arcana card is the Wheel of Fortune, and riding it means sometimes things are going well in our creative work, and sometimes not. The trick is to stay centered so you don’t get thrown but instead reap the rewards. This week, ask yourself, “How can I stay centered in the midst of the ups and downs of my creative work?”

Action, King of Cups. Again, Cups is the element of Water in the realm of heart, emotions, dreams, intuition and creativity. The King is the master of the element so is not overwhelmed by emotions. This week, be the King of Cups, allow yourself to be the conduit for inspiration and creativity but not overwhelmed by it. Keep your perspective.

Gift, The Devil. Another Major Arcana card, the Devil often represents the chains that bind us and hold us back. In our creative work, it can be those places we don’t want to go because of the fears and hurts and angers that loom. But, in the position of this week’s gift, those emotions, those shadows have within them the power to enhance and deepen our creative work. Use the shadows, the dark elements to give power and even playfulness to your creativity.

Categories Creativity, Tarot
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Theme, Justice. This Major Arcana card speaks of justice and balance this week, as the theme for you this week for your creative work. Be alert to where you need to bring more balance into your creative work, perhaps between your work and the rest of your life, perhaps between inspiration and creation, between being and doing.

Focus, The Hermit. Another Major Arcana card, the Hermit is the one who seeks silence and solitude, the better to commune with nature and the Divine. This week, ask yourself, “Where do I need more silence and solitude in my daily life for my creative work? How do I achieve that?”

Action, Page of Cups. Cups is the element of Water in the realm of heart, emotions, dreams, intuition, and creativity. The Page is the energetic, vital messenger. This week, offer your work with all the love and passion you feel for it, and with all the awareness of love and service you feel for those who might receive it.

Gift, 2 of Swords. Swords is the element of Air in the realm of mind, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs, and communications. The gift this week, following that Libra Full Moon on April 10th, is an opportunity to turn inward, to connect with your source of divine inspiration, to be in divine relationship to your creative work.

Categories Creativity, Tarot

I recently had my annual physical checkup. Perhaps it is because I am heading to official senior-dom in August, but I was given or scheduled for a bunch of tests I’ve never had before. They also drew blood, weighed and measured me (I’ve shrunk in height but, unfortunately, not in weight). I left the office feeling good that I’d done what I could to keep myself healthy.

This made me think about how our creative work, our writing could use an annual (at least) check up as well. Have you done one in the last 12 months? If you haven’t, then maybe it is time to do one for yourself and look at the following:

Bone health. Your bones hold you up, provide the internal structure for the muscles and blood and organs to do their work. Otherwise you would just be a pile of…well, goo in a skin sack. In your writing, your bones are your commitments and the habits and discipline that help you follow through on those commitments.
Blood health. The air you breathe and the food you eat nourishes the blood that nourishes your body. The body of your writing also requires nourishment through all aspects of yourself. Exercise, sleep, good food help the physical you, but nourishment in the form of reading, meditating or dreaming, working with oracles, and keeping a journal are also important.
Muscular health. The muscles of your body move you from place to place, position to position. Without muscles, you’d go nowhere. Think of your goals, dreams, story ideas, and deadlines as your writing muscles. They have to be exercised, strengthened daily.
Heart health. Like the other organs of the body, the heart is critical to survival. It’s critical to the survival of writing as well. A healthy heart means a regular rhythm, your regular rhythm. The heart of your writing also needs a regular rhythm; it may vary from time to time but words need to pulse onto paper or screen in a regular rhythm, the beat that goes on, that denotes creative life.

I know I’ve stretched the metaphor a bit, but you get the point. You need to give your writing life a regular checkup for it to stay healthy and active. So take time for a checkup with these diagnostic questions:

1. What is your commitment to your stories, your writing, your writing career?
2. What are you doing to nourish your imagination, to keep your writing blood healthy and pumping, your words flowing?
3. What is your reason for writing?
4. What goals, dreams or visions pull you forward to keep writing even when there is no promise of a contract or reward at the end of the project?
5. What daily, weekly or monthly goals do you set to give you something to move towards?
6. How do you reward yourself for your hard work?
7. What do you do to keep your writing rhythm regular?

Use these questions to keep your writing and writing life healthy.

Categories Creativity, Writing


Theme, Page of Coins. Coins is the element of Earth in the realm of home, health and wealth, anything you can touch, taste or feel. Page is the messenger with vitality and energy. Notice how this Page holds that Coin–proudly. This week, look for opportunities to proudly share your work. This is not the week for false modesty or shyness about your creative gifts.

Focus, 6 of Coins. Another Coins card. This one is about balance, about being aware of the flow of resources, of paying attention to how much you put out and how much comes back to you. Are you paying attention to your budget…not just in terms of money but other physical resources as well? Energy, time, materials?

Action, 5 of Coins. Oh, how sad this woman looks with her alms cup out in front of her. How would her demeanor and attitude change if she turned around and looked in a new direction? Sometimes we get stuck thinking money and resources are only going to come from one direction. This week, look in a new direction, a new avenue for creating income, for attracting resources and aid.

Gift, Death. The card that everyone hates to see is often a true gift. Death, of the Major Arcana, is about letting go, letting something die away, an old project perhaps or an avenue of marketing. But just as the dead leaves of last fall provide mulch for new growth this spring, look for new blossoming to occur with the release of things that are past their time. Look for the gift of the White Rose.

Categories Creativity, Tarot


Theme, Ace of Swords. Swords is the element of Air in the realm of mind, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs and communication. Ace is the beginning, a gift from spirit holding all potential and possibility. This week, be ready to receive that new idea, new insight, divine inspiration. If you aren’t on the look out, you might miss it.

Focus, Strength. This Major Arcana card is about the Strength from within. A level of spiritual and emotional courage. This week, where do you need to access and use that Strength for your creative work or project?

Action, 4 of Wands. Wands is the element of Fire in the realm of spirit, creativity, career and work. Four is a number of stability and structure. Take action this week to create structures around your creative work, whether that is a commitment to it or an actual space set apart for it.

Gift, Queen of Swords. Again in the element of Air, but this time with the mistress of the element. Here is a woman who knows her mind and speaks with truth. Here is a writer whose words have power. Receive this gift this week. She empowers your creativity.

Categories Creativity, Tarot


Theme, 7 of Cups. Cups is the element of Water in the realm of heart, emotions, dreams, intuition and creativity. This week, beware of letting yourself get distracted by other work or creative possibilities that distract you from your current project. Don’t succumb to bright, shiny object syndrome.

Focus, 2 of Swords. Swords is the element of Air in the realm of mind, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs and communication. Two is a number of choice and decision. This week, ask yourself, where do I need to trust my intuition instead of my logical brain when it comes to making a decision, especially regarding my creative work?

Action, Knight of Coins. Coins is the element of Earth in the realm of home, health and wealth. The Knight is the one who serves and protects. This week, you must leave the safe space of your studio or office and take your work out into the world. Speak, exhibit, perform.

Gift, 3 of Coins. Then, after getting out into the world with your work, you are ready to receive time alone in your work space with time to focus on finishing details before starting another project.

Categories Creativity, Tarot

…Hermes only leads us to clarity when we abandon our preconceived plans. As with the Greek principle of aporia, only when we reach the point of pathlessness can a new way open before us.
~Aaron Cheak, PhD~

The other day, I was doing some reading and research and stumbled across the term “aporia.” Being the lover of words that I am, I had to check out the online Oxford English Dictionary to get a definition of this new-to-me word.

Aporia: an irresolvable internal contradiction or logical disjunction in a text, argument or theory.

Another definition is: impasse, difficulty of passing, lack of resources, puzzlement in philosophy.

This made me think about how often the people I work with on a regular basis–writers and creatives–face impasses, lack of resources, puzzlement or an internal contradiction that appears irresolvable in their work on a regular basis.

For example, you just published a book but when you sit down to work on the next one you hear that internal message of “you can’t write.”

Or you want to write but the fear makes challenges like time, money and energy seem insurmountable, irresolvable.

Or you find yourself in the middle of your work, unsure of where to go next and wonder what the heck you are doing and who do you think you are.

Aporia makes you feel like this card from the Major Arcana of the tarot—the Hanged Man.

“Traitor” from Tarot of the Sevenfold Mystery by Robert Place

Hung up. Unable to move forward. Unable to do anything other than flail helplessly while hanging by one foot.

This is how you can feel if your work isn’t selling and bills are piling up. This is how you can feel when you have the deepest driving desire to do your work and everyone around you is telling you to get real, to be practical, to stop daydreaming.

But, the Hanged Man shows you how to move out of creative aporia.

1. Surrender to the experience. Stop flailing, trying to get loose, and cursing your helplessness. The more you flail, the tighter the knot gets in the rope around your foot. The more you flail, the more you spin in circles from that rope (which would make me dizzy and ready to send up my last meal). Didn’t you ever used to hang by your knees from the monkey bars? Pretend you are doing it again. And take a deep breath—or several.

2. Abandon preconceived plans. Too often, the temptation is to think you know what you know. You are certain that the story or the image or the melody should develop this way. So you keep pushing forward even when your intuition, or instincts or inner knowing urges you to do otherwise. Aporia is this internal impasse, an inability to move forward because you won’t abandon your “plan”. What would happen if you considered the impasse an opportunity for initiation into the deeper work? What if the impasse is actually a rebirth?

3. Look for new insights and perspectives. If you can let go of your notion of how the work should go, how your career should develop, etc. then you can give time and energy into looking at things upside down. Or you can ask, “How can I integrate what seems to be two contradictory notions? What is the big picture here? What am I not seeing that could free me and my work?”

There are many times and many ways you can experience aporia, can get “hung up”. It is how you co-exist with that experience that can make the difference.

As I tell clients when the Hanged Man shows up in a reading, recall the times as a child you lay on your bed with your head hanging over the edge as you viewed your world upside down. Remember how different things looked from that perspective? Consider trying it now and be aware of how vulnerable you feel in that position, prone on the bed with your throat exposed.

And be conscious of how you see things anew.

Aporia is an opportunity to cross a threshold into a new way of seeing and being…with your creative work.

Categories Creativity, Tarot


Theme, Page of Coins. Coins is the element of Earth in the realm of home, health and wealth, anything in physical form. The Page is the youthful messenger modeling for you the energy of the week–being ready to share the beauty and gifts of your creativity in a practical or physical way. Hold that book up, exhibit that painting, play that piece of music.

Focus, 8 of Cups. Cups is the element of Water in the realm of heart, emotions, dreams, intuition and creativity. Eight is a number that indicates being near completion, a sense of movement toward that. See the Pisces Full Moon? Ask yourself this week, what is the creative vision or dream I now want to pursue? And what to I need to let go of emotionally in order to pursue it?

Action, 5 of Cups. Cups again. And the number five is one of challenge and change. In answer to the questions of the last card, one of the things you need to let go of is past disappointments. Stopping sitting there protecting other ideas or projects, worrying about your emotional vulnerability around them. Get up and get out there!

Gift, King of Swords. Swords is the element of Air in the realm of mind, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs and communication. The King is the master of the element. When you take the action above, someone comes into your arena to help you communicate about your work with more clarity and power. Perhaps, the action clears your mind so that you can do this for yourself, so that you can make more informed decisions and choices for your work.

Categories Creativity, Tarot

The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.
~Carl Jung~

Bob and I spent this past weekend in Virginia with our oldest Stephen, his wife Mindy, and their two sons, Andrew (almost 5) and Ryan (almost 3). As is our usual routine on the morning of our return home, we ate breakfast and then prepared to load the car.

Bob and I don’t like to leave without first spending a little time with the boys in the morning but while Andrew plowed through his breakfast and talked with us, Ryan slept. I kept checking my watch. Finally, Ryan was up and dressed. I told him that Pop-pop and I were ready to leave.

“Play with me, G’andma.”

I reminded him that he’d slept in and it was time for Pop-pop and me to leave.

“Play with me, G’andma,” this time a little louder, a little more insistent with that edge of upset to it.


“Grandma, I have an idea,” Andrew piped up. “Why don’t you play with us for ten minutes?”

Well, what grandmother could refuse? After making sure that was agreeable to both boys, Bob and I dumped out some Legos and sat in the family room and played with the boys for ten minutes. When the time was up, we put everything away and without protest, Andrew and Ryan got up and proceeded to “help” us load our car. After kisses and hugs goodbye, Bob and I headed home.

Wasn’t that smart of Andrew to ask for just ten minutes (probably modeled by his also smart parents)? Can’t you just see your Muse negotiating for at least that minimal amount of time and attention?

“Play with me?”

You glance at your watch prepared to say no.

“Will you play with me for just ten minutes?”

How you can say no to such a manageable and heartfelt request from your Muse?

You can’t.

Chances are, of course, that once you start playing with your Muse, ten minutes will turn into 20, 30, or more.

And sometimes, because of life, it will just be ten.

But that’s okay.

Because sometimes, that is all your Muse needs.
Just ten minutes. Will you play for just ten minutes?

Categories Creativity, Family


Theme, 7 of Coins. Coins is the element of Earth in the realm of home, health and wealth. Seven is a number of action or being aware of action. This week, keep your eyes on your creative prize. That is, tend to your creative projects. Although they may be coming along nicely, now is not the time to expect them to come to fruition on their own. They still must be nurtured and guarded.

Focus, Knight of Wands. Wands is the element of Fire in the realm of spirit, creativity, career, and work. The Knight is the champion, the one who has what is necessary to do the job of serving and protecting. Ask yourself how you are the passionate, fiery champion for your creative work.

Action, 5 of Coins. Back in the element of Earth, you can see the woman with her hand outstretched seeking alms/aid, when right behind her is the possibility of a level of help or aid that is better than she can imagine. Look around you this week for where help is available to you that you are not receiving or aware of. Move from passive victim to active seeker.

Gift, Queen of Swords. Swords is the element of Air in the realm of mind, thoughts, attitudes, beliefs and communication. The Queen is the mistress of Air and, not only does she take no guff from anyone, but she knows how to get her point across, sharply and with intelligence. One of the sources of aid or help in your circle might be someone who can offer that skill to you in order to help you communicate better about your creative work. Be prepared to receive it.

Categories Creativity, Tarot