The Role of the Creative

The Role of the Creative

So I’ve already posed the question, Are We Afraid of Others’ Pain? I’ve talked about Trigger Warnings and how they marginalize the experiences being offered.

This post is about how the creative side of life can be a way to bring it all back around.

Part 3…

The Role of the Creative

So … In the first post, I mentioned that someone gave me feedback on The Storyteller’s Throne.  They had only read about 15% and put it down due to the content of the main character’s past. (Which is a small part of her history and doesn’t define the book and its messages) They put a Trigger Warning (it all circles back around … LOL) on this review and thankfully mentioned they didn’t read more than 15% of the book … The Trigger Warning was for child sexual abuse in the character’s past … But there it was …


(A little shiver went through me just typing that …)


My initial reaction was intense because I felt it missed the point of the book and was placing a black mark on it for someone who may have been interested in the book … and then I delved a little deeper into my reaction and here I am using it as a vehicle for the message of the book …

As I went deeper … I began to think about how we shy away from situations, people’s pain …


Isn’t the role of Creativity, of Art, of Poetry, of Theater, of Fiction to allow us to feel things and to make us think and to bring into our lives some truth in ways that it may connect on a deeper level?

Isn’t that the role of the arts?

Art in all its forms doesn’t have to look pretty…it can be Ugly, Infuriating, Disgusting, Honest, Beautiful, and a Vehicle for Change.


Have you not read a book as a young person that affected how you felt about something, changed the course of your actions?

Have you not seen a theater performance that you completely related to and it brought you home to yourself?

Have you not been moved by a piece of art and in that moment felt seen, heard, spoken for?

How many of you have read books or seen shows or gone to an art opening because it was comfortable, easy and didn’t challenge you or your heart?  (Yes, I too love a good romantic comedy … but even in those, I allow myself a good cry … ha!  And there’s definitely a place for just vegging out with complacency after a long week with the kids or a long day of work) 


Omg … the arts and the creative have, virtually forever, been pillars of truth.  They have shown us the hard grueling richness of what it means to be human. And it isn’t always pretty, easy, or feel good, in fact at least 1/2 of the time it isn’t … if not more.

The arts and the creative place themselves directly in the intersection of experience and transformation.  They allow us the metamorphosis of our everyday into something bigger than just us.


And due to this, books have been burned, movies have been sidelined, art has been destroyed because of the way it moves us out of our everyday and into thinking differently, feeling differently.



Imagine the power of that.

The role of the creative in opening us up in an empathetic way to both ourselves and others is crucial.  It’s one of the only places where we can put it out there, where we can place ourselves directly in It.

Sometimes we don’t have the right words, the right ways to express what’s going on inside of us, sometimes we think we’re all alone, sometimes we get too comfortable (there’s that word again).

But Art in all of its forms makes us bigger and better than who we normally are.  It shows us the depth of connection that’s possible, it places us in the crosshairs of what can be hard truths

(Not only that … but we can use the arts and creativity as a vehicle for our own transformations)

transformation quote

If you pick up a book or read a review of a movie and put it down, or turn it off, or walk out, or if you scroll past a post online because a person or a few people wrote the phrase trigger warning … what are you really scared of?

What is it about our pain and the pain of others that scares us so very much?

Have you ever consumed a work of art, literature, or theater that was uncomfortable but left you with a new perspective after it was done?  If so, let me know in the comments.  

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