This is a great article from The Crimson on Rakesh Khurana, the new dean of Harvard College, entitled “Man on a Mission.” Khurana went over the river to become Cabot House master last year from Harvard Business School, a place near and dear to my heart. I believe I actually scribed a class for him once; I’m not sure if he was actively teaching at the time, or stepped in for a colleague’s class, but he was dynamic. It’ll be exciting to see where he takes the school. (And he posts fun things on Instagram.)
One thing I’ve learned in the past few weeks is that if you’re a creative person, you need creativity in your life to thrive. If you are a writer, or an artist, or a musician, or anyone that finds themselves losing track of time and awareness when working on a creative project, you need to keep doing that, not because it’s what you do but because it’s what keeps you intact. There’s a bigger story to this that I may write about soon, but I’m someone who took a year off from creativity. Just in the past month I have been taking a class on creativity, and reading about the creative process, specifically for writers. I also attended Story, a conference in Chicago for “Creators, Dreamers, and Storytellers.” All these elements have worked together to show me that when you’re a creative you can’t just turn it off and walk away. It really is like breathing, and the act of creating affects psyche and soul. It’s not just about making a good story, but about the artist thriving in the act of creation.
When you’re sitting in workshop discussing a story, you always see yourself in the future sitting in coffeeshops pounding out the great American novel, or at a literary conference chatting about the identity issues in Kafka’s work with other hipster writery folk, or striking the bad grammar from the submissions of literary magazines, or sitting in circle-the-chair discussions with students over whether characters feel real or not, or reworking a paragraph from your most recent short story, basically being super hip as a writer within the writer persona. Continue reading
Man, it has been a busy season. Summer was busy: My job escalates in July and especially August (incoming students), I was out of town twice in July for my best friend’s wedding in California, I was taking a class during July too (note to self: Never take a summer course when you’re traveling twice to California), I bought a car in August, I went away at the end of August, I started two classes in September (only thought it would be one!), I was away for a week in September, I’m now living alone in my big apartment, I had a huge book to read as part of class, I’m going away at the beginning of October, I have new projects at work… Continue reading
Change is actually good for us (just keep telling yourself that). This isn’t the defeatist change of “Well, nothing lasts forever,” but it’s the change of turnover, of freshness, of new ideas and new sights and new relationships. Take my workplace: We’re pretty innovative and highly successful, and it’s because we don’t sit still. We’re constantly thinking, trying new things, give new projects to different people, and it’s all for the betterment of our organization and our product. It’s interesting how in certainly areas of life we say, “Let’s do something new!” where in other areas we say, “I want it to stay the same!” I’m like that way at work. I want to do new things and try new ideas out. I want to be creative and, well, create! I want to explore new avenues of doing things. Continue reading