GESTALT in the Times

I think one of the prime ways that Lichtenbergianism frees up the creative person to create is the Precept of ABORTIVE ATTEMPTS, that is, the idea that you don't create a work of art perfectly right from the start.  You start by producing what you can and not worrying about "perfection."

Then you circle back around and take a look at it and see what needs fixing.  This is the Precept of GESTALT, followed by SUCCESSIVE APPROXIMATION.

However, I think sometimes creative beginners don't quite believe me when I tell them that this is the way all artists work.  I think that deep down they think I'm humoring them, getting them to take baby steps for now but when they're "real" artists they can just whack out that painting or chapter or song before knocking off for lunch.

Sorry, guys, it doesn't ever work that way.

As evidence, please go look at this piece in the New York Times: "Poetry in Action."  It's actual pages of "real" poets' work, and they have bravely shared some of their unfinished work in order to show how they move from ABORTIVE ATTEMPT to ABANDONMENT.  It's pure GESTALT.

Go.  Read it.

Then STEAL FROM THE BEST and do likewise.


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