Feeling Uninspired? You Need Big Magic

You know those people who say not to see the movie first if there's a book it was based on? They say seeing it on a screen ruins it. I've usually agreed-- I've always been a words person, a book person, a reader.

So, there isn't a movie about Big Magic...but there was a podcast. And me, the reader, found the podcast first. (The book hadn't been released yet, but that's not the point.) It was called Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert. Yep, she's the Eat, Pray, Love one. I absolutely LOVED Magic Lessons. It became part of my daily routine, and I looked forward to my long walks through the neighborhood when I got to listen to Liz give magic lessons to stuck creatives and also chat with her equally amazing famous BFFs (like Rob Bell, Cheryl Strayed, Brene Brown, etc).

Her whole concept is creative living beyond fear. She workshopped situations and circumstances with these incredible creative (and real, very normal) women who were all stuck in some way or trapped or held back by fear. Each conversation, I wanted to tweet everything Liz said and tattoo it on my skin and write it all over my walls, because her wisdom is so real and rich and warm and applicable to life in the most genuine, butt-kicking, powerfully beautiful way.

If you’re alive, you’re a creative person. You and I and everyone you know are descended from tens of thousands of years of makers. ... We are all the chosen few. We are all makers by design.
— pg. 89 of Big Magic

I knew a lot of what she talked about in the podcast was from her book, so I was eager to get my hands on it. I had pre-ordered it, which strangely meant I got it later than it was available in stores... but once Big Magic was in my hands, all colorful and bold and striking, I devoured it. Literally read it all in one sitting. It's that good.

She talks about courage, enchantment, permission, persistence, trust and divinity.

She gives voices and personalities and character to the things that seem so big and vague-- things like Curiosity and Fear and Inspiration. She makes them seem so real and so present and alive in a way that makes you truly want to befriend them and become allies with them in this world. It's a really enchanting and wondrous thing.

She makes it all feel like a swift kick in the pants combined with a big bear hug, like she's your biggest and proudest fan, your therapist, your best friend, and the voice to your soul's core all at the same time. I really can't even put it into words, but I can't get enough of it. 

I want to read this book over and over again. I've already underlined and flagged so many pages, and have a feeling I'll keep doing so as new things strike me over time.

You, whoever you are, need to read this book. I'm sure some part of your creative soul or your beating heart feels a little stuck or a bit afraid or a tad uncertain and unsure. Whatever it is, this book will be the nudge you need to get through it and move into better, freer places.

Bring forth what is within you, then, whether it succeeds or fails. Do it whether the final product (your souvenir) is crap or gold. Do it whether the critics love you or hate you—or whether the critics have never heard of you and perhaps will never hear of you. Do it whether people get it or don’t get it. It doesn’t have to be perfect, and you don’t have to be Plato. It’s all just an instinct and an experiment and mystery, so being. Begin anywhere. Preferably right now. And if greatness should ever accidentally stumble upon you, let it catch you hard at work. Hard at work, and sane.
— pg. 173 of Big Magic

It's truly magical, this book. I promise you won't regret reading it. Oh, and listen to that podcast too! In whatever order you want. Neither one will ruin the other. It just isn't possible to ruin pure gold.