John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey

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"Doin' the Best I Can, Boss"

I won't say all, but a lot of my creative process is subconscious ... sometimes I sit around bouncing ideas around, refining them, and all that jazz, but sometimes it's really just a matter of Conscious Mind says to Subconscious, "Hey dude, I need some strips for next week. Chew on it, would you?" To which Subconscious Mind, being the mysterious and incomprehensible entity he is, says "Jellybeans."

But usually in a matter of hours or days, an idea comes bubbling up. Sometimes it's a big idea, sometimes a little one, sometimes it's just a pointer that shows Conscious Mind the way to go. But what impresses me about it is how often they're good ideas. My Subconscious Mind knows what he's doing, apparently, and I'm grateful for his help. Certainly most of the times where my storytelling ability has gone CLUNK have been when Subconscious was on vacation and Conscious Mind tried to do it all without him.

That's the one thing that is an issue with Subconscious, you see, is that he works on his own schedule, and at his own pace. Subconscious doesn't care of there's a strip due tomorrow -- if he doesn't want to come up with one, he's not going to. Sometimes, it's just because he can't: he's too tired, or too overwhelmed, or just needs to have some new material to work from. Other times, he just plain won't, usually because Conscious Mind is demanding something that Subconscious just isn't interested in at the moment. When Subconscious is all excited about the glittering spires of Aquilonia, and Conscious Mind says, "That's great, but Tiffany needs a new storyline," Subconscious has a tendency to say, "Well Tiffany can wait, I'm busy!"

Fortunately, over the past couple of years, both Conscious Mind and Subconscious have been learning to get along better, and even to start liking each other. Conscious Mind, I think, has become more accomodating, and certainly has become more willing to make an effort to listen to Subconscious, which has made a big difference. Subconscious, on the other hand, has become noticeably less self-centered. As long as he gets some of what he wants, he's willing to work on some other stuff too. They've gone from Stern Taskmaster and Petulant Brat, to being pretty good working partners, and this is a wonderful thing.

It's certainly made it a lot more peaceful inside my head, I'll tell you that!

-The Gneech
Tags: deep thoughts
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