When I was contacted to review a copy of a new book by Kim Piper Werner called Make It Mighty Ugly, a new book to inspire and help people who are having a hard time developing a creative practice, I didn’t think I would really actually benefit it. I was wrong.
I mean, I sew a new project every week, take photos all the time, and am always doing creative things. However, the book did help me. I learned about my creative blocks and negative thinking, and some new techniques on how to unblock them. I’ve been in a sort of creative slump all summer, still producing, but not feeling very inspired. So this book came just at the right time. And I haven’t read a book this helpful to artists and other creative types since reading a little book called The Artist’s Way years back when I was studying acting.The book takes a step by step approach to help channel our creative demons to turn into more positive and productive helpers. Part one helps you identify strengths and weaknesses that are holding you back. Part two has lots of creative exercises and list making activities, then making of an intentionally ugly creature to get over perfectionism. And part three help you establish a creative routine, working you through blocks and procrastination. Then the book explains why it’s so important to find your own creative community and how to find one.
Some of the exercises were actually quite emotional. Reading the book and completing the exercises while alone in my hotel room in suburban Houston during Couture Sewing School was pretty heavy. I learned about my self sabotaging attitudes that keep me from moving ahead in my life, creative and otherwise, and how to quiet those negative thoughts down. A good thing.
There’s an exercise where you write down all the good things about your creative self. And then you write down all the negative things you tell yourself. Once you get past that part, you learn how to reconcile the two.
Even though I never did make the ugly doll or finish that exercise, I did enough of the exercises to feel I really benefited from the book. And I totally recommend it to anyone who wants to be more creative but somehow can’t get motivated to start making. But even if you do make stuff like I do, it’s still helpful. Also, the writer has a funny and motivating voice and I really liked all the little interviews with creative professionals. There are also lots of link to interesting Ted talks and web articles to take it even further.
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Leave a comment here or Like Sew Country Chick on FB in the rafflecopter widget to enter. Your emails will not be shared and will stay private. I’m not getting paid for this review but did receive a copy of the book for free. But I liked it a lot and hope it’s helpful for y’all.
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