collected links about practising

I’ve been writing quite a bit recently about practice as part of some preparation for a seminar I’m giving in Wolverhampton and Roehampton in March. Part of that writing (and reading) has been about questioning how useful the word is given its ubiquity in dance and performance. More on that soon, but for now here are some snippets from things I’ve been collecting.

When I’m in writing mode for a novel, I get up at four a.m. and work for five to six hours. In the afternoon, I run for ten kilometers or swim for fifteen hundred meters (or do both), then I read a bit and listen to some music. I go to bed at nine p.m. I keep to this routine every day without variation. The repetition itself becomes the important thing; it’s a form of mesmerism. I mesmerize myself to reach a deeper state of mind. But to hold to such repetition for so long—six months to a year—requires a good amount of mental and physical strength. In that sense, writing a long novel is like survival training. Physical strength is as necessary as artistic sensitivity.

— Murakami

http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/2/the-art-of-fiction-no-182-haruki-murakami

What does practice look like for you?

Practice is writing even when you don’t have something to write.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/what-does-practice-look-like-for-you/38247 

 

On flow

Avoid Flow. Do What Does Not Come Easy.

http://calnewport.com/blog/2011/12/23/flow-is-the-opiate-of-the-medicore-advice-on-getting-better-from-an-accomplished-piano-player/

decision making and slipperiness

I’ve been writing a book chapter with Colin Poole these last few weeks (or is that months) and this is a bit that was edited out.

I practice delaying decision making, and allowing ideas, images, patterns and concepts to emerge and change in time. It is a little slippery, as if I am trying to get out of the way of the creative process. The American post-modern choreographer Deborah Hay asks, ‘Does your creativity … reveal itself to you if you stay out of the making?’ I think of different angles, and often back-up far enough to gain a wide-angle perspective. What about this? Or these? Or that? What am I missing? What ought to be missed?