Found in 4 comments on Hacker News
achompas · 2013-01-02 · Original thread
I'm a big fan of Twyla Tharp's "The Creative Habit" for one reason: it completely does away with the whole mystification of "creativity" as some gift from a divine source. The plot is simple: creating stuff requires work. Figure out how you work best, then work. End of story.

Anyway, I'm a fan. It cured me of all inspiration-seeking behavior.


cwjacklin · 2012-04-23 · Original thread
see how other creative people do it.

from amazon "Twyla Tharp, one of America's greatest choreographers, began her career in 1965, and has created more than 130 dances for her company as well as for the Joffrey Ballet, The New York City Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, London's Royal Ballet, and American Ballet Theatre. "

timr · 2011-06-03 · Original thread
I think you're creating a false dichotomy. I used to believe that I was the "artist" type, but I was mainly just a procrastinator who didn't have good work habits. I became the "steady progress" type as I took on bigger, harder projects. And honestly, passion is a lot harder to come by when you're working on an intractable bug six years into a long-term project. If you rely on the muses to guide you, you rarely get things done, because that last 1% is rarely ever fun.

Also, you might be surprised by how many artists have a strict routine, and dedicate themselves to a regular pattern of practice. Twyla Tharp wrote an entire book on the subject:

_pius · 2009-04-26 · Original thread
My advice isn't for procrastination in general (e.g. putting off paying bills or mowing the lawn), but for that special kind of procrastination that stops you from getting a business or important project going.

Read "The War of Art" by Steven Pressman and internalize its message. You can finish it in a day. In a nutshell, the book describes procrastination and some other vices as embodiments of Resistance, an evil spirit that plagues anyone who tries to do anything worthwhile.

The strategy Pressman outlines for fighting Resistance dovetails nicely with the techniques described in the other book I'd recommend, which is "The Creative Habit" by Twyla Tharp. With respect to procrastination, Tharp talks about recognizing (1) that creative work is still work and (2) the importance of developing solid daily routines and rituals so that you stop treating your work as something you do only when you're "inspired." She more or less adds details to the Pressman's description of the "hard hat mentality" necessary to get anything done.

The hard hat mentality is that you don't procrastinate on your job or wait until you "want" to do it, you just put the hard hat on every day and do the work so that you can get paid (whatever "paid" means for you). You're doing it not because you're inspired or motivated; you're doing it because it's your job. Period.

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