New Steps

A few days ago, I bought a book called, “The Artist’s Way”.   For those who don’t know, much like I didn’t.  It is a book about recovering creativity.  It has a 12 week exercise program to help any artist, whether it be a painter, writer, musician sculptor or whatever.  I am only a few days into it and in the first week of exercises.   As this is part of my journey, I thought I would start a series about this and keep you posted.  Many of you have been following my journey since or near the beginning and I thought it might be beneficial to me and fun for you.

I have been in a bit of a rut for for the past couple of months.  I was at the Savannah Jazz Festival last week and it got me all fired up.  Some parts of the festival  more than others.  I was having a conversation with Alex about how I was fired up and how to do something about it.  She reminded me of a book a friend of  ours talked about a couple of years ago, called The Artist’s Way.  I had forgotten all about it.  I told her was going to buy it, and I did.  Once again, I thought it was just a regular book, not a book with all these exercises and thought processes.  I had no idea what I was in for and it has only been 3 days!

So far, I have written 9 pages (3 a day when I wake up) of streaming writing. Just whatever comes to mind.  It is not as easy as one would think. I can be in the middle of something and my pen stops.  I tell my self “write anything” then the next few sentences really have nothing to do with anything.  It is kinda weird, but I am following the assignments exactly as the author says to.  I have created a “Monster Hall of Fame” as well as a “Champion Hall of Fame”  These consist of people who have either discouraged my creativity in my life or encouraged me.  Some of things things a person doesn’t think about because it was so long ago.  Some of these things we want to forget and/or have forgot until we are challenged by them.  Each list will get bigger I am sure as I go along.  It starts from the younger days.  In my life, people haven’t always been so encouraging- probably like most people.  It has already been a roller coaster ride of emotions.

One exercise I tried to do today, involved writing down careers I would do if I wasn’t doing this.  I wrote down 5 as instructed.  Only one wasn’t in some way involved in the arts.  Again, I went to when I was just a little boy and wrote police officer/detective.  I had to pick 1 of the 5  and do something about it this week.  (I think part of this is to get you to think outside of the box.)  I went down to the Police Station to see if I could do a “ride-a-long” and set it up for Monday or Tuesday.  Well, it isn’t that simple.  One needs a police officer to sponsor them, then there is paperwork, and who knows what else.  It is quite obvious, that isn’t going to happen soon.  So I am going with my second choice, photographer.  I will take a series of photos around Savannah and see how I do with that.  I am not letting go of the “ride-a-long”  I just might do that just because…..someday.  I think that will be fun!

As always, thank you for reading about my journey!



  1. i bought this book two years ago James and it helped immensely in opening up new avenues of creativity. Keep at it, it’s worth the time 🙂

  2. Thank you for the encouragement, Diana! It does seem daunting, but I will finish it! 🙂

  3. Kyle Shiver said:

    James, it is really nice to read about your journey. Most all my favorite musicians and visual artists changed a lot during their careers, and I love to follow their progression. Follow the muse, and I will look forward to your next blog 🙂

    • Thank you for following along on my journey, Kyle. I suppose the changes we all go through is part of the growth process. Like Sonny Rollins told me, “We are all pilgrims on the path” A sentence I think about more and more these days. 🙂

  4. Hello, how’s it going? I hope you do well. I needed to say that I like New Steps Jamesrinalduccijazz's Blog.

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