When I pause to take a breath, I find myself energized in a new way by my creative work. I am writing two plays and incubating an idea for a third. I am thinking more about what I have to offer this world, and it comes down to empathy and telling stories that need to be told. I’ve been on a tear of applying for grants and residencies, and I feel my applications are stronger than they’ve ever been – this was validated by some encouraging feedback I got on a grant application that was rejected. (Always ask for feedback!)
But I feel guilty for being so excited about my creative endeavors. We live in a world that tells us that creativity is superfluous, it’s the icing and not the substance. It feels like my excitement about my work is taking me away from my focus on fighting fascism, on standing up for what’s right. What a privilege, to not be fighting for my life every moment, to be able to make up stories.
But creativity is as necessary to human existence as anything else. It is through the arts that we get in touch with our humanity, our very essence. I remind myself that my contribution to society is through engaging the imagination and curiosity of my audiences. If I can create space for telling stories and imagining new realities, then I’m creating the possibility for those realities to come to life off the stage, too.