My purpose in writing this is so that the condition I've been infected with, Chronic Creativity, may be more readily understood and hopefully caught. I've come to realize that the secret to being creative comes from a certain mindset — a certain perspective and outlook on life and the world around. It's about a lifestyle of looking at things from another angle. It is true that anyone can "do" creative things such as quilt a blanket, bake a cake, or write a poem. However, there is a level that goes beyond that. I am referring to a state of being. I am referring to being a creative person rather than doing creative things.
The realization that I've been infected with Chronic Creativity occurred to me just recently. It seems that no matter where I go, what I do, whom I'm with, what I see, and what I hear, there is some sort of filter in my brain that everything goes through. The only way that I can describe it is as a "creative filter" that information goes in and out of without me even trying. I no longer find it odd that I get tremendous creative inspiration from places such as a hardware store. (Keep in mind that I know nothing about hardware.)
I've simply learned to explain these bursts of creative thoughts in odd places on my "Chronic Creativity." Lately, I have been saying to myself, "Help! I'm in a state of Chronic Creativity!" The term just came out of my sub-conscious mind one day.
So what is Chronic Creativity? The word "chronic" comes from the Greek word, chronikos, or "of time." According to the Collegiate Dictionary, it means to be marked by long duration or frequent recurrence. It also means always present or encountered. Chronic Creativity is a condition that I termed myself. It can also be referred to as "CC." I do not know of any others who have been officially diagnosed with the disease. However, I do know of a few people who experience certain symptoms conducive to this condition. Perhaps you are one of them. Perhaps you want to be one of them. Whatever the case, having Chronic Creativity is a good condition to have. However, it is not always the favorite condition of those around us. In fact, to them it can even be a nuisance.
My purpose in writing this is to educate on the symptoms of Chronic Creativity. I want to lay out my hypothesis with the hopes that Chronic Creativity will be more clearly accepted, understood and encouraged in our homes, schools, and jobs. In addition, I want those who have the symptoms of Chronic Creativity to come forth and embrace who they were created to be. Occasionally, people with Chronic Creativity are ostracized in their environments and are encouraged to change.
It is possible to rid a person of the disease, however, I do not recommend it. There have been many who have been "cured" of Chronic Creativity and they are miserable. They have learned through various methods of intimidation, rejection, and humiliation by others to be "normal", "civil", and "just like everybody else." The Chronically Creative mind is a valuable tool for society and should be recognized as such. •
This excerpt is from Chronic Creativity: A Diagnostic Look at the Condition and How to Become Infected ©2001 Angela K. Mack. All rights reserved.
Angie Mack Reilly is a musical director, performing artist, blues educator and writer who has a wealth of experience and connections in the arts and entertainment industry. More
Interview with Angela Mack
The Value of An Idea
Chronic Creativity Introduction
Symptom 1: Claustrophobia
Symptom 2: Problemplasty
Symptom 3: Idea-itis
Symptom 4: Malaise
Symptom 5: Ingenuousness
Symptom 6: Hallucinations
Symptom 7: Offline Inspiration
"Symptom 8: Scatterbrain
Symptom 9: Creativity Epidemic
Chronic Creativity Conclusion