The Risk of Art

Notes on Creativity theme of the week:
The Creative Process

Creativity requires courage. You may believe strongly in an unpopular position, or have a fighting attitude toward something you see in society and want to give voice to these feelings through your creative platform. But you anticipate the negative social consequences, so you bury your sentiments and carry on with day-to-day living.

Expressing felt truth is risky business. Just ask the Dixie Chicks whose entire career was unalterably changed by a one-sentence comment in 2003: “Just so you know, we’re on the good side with y’all. We do not want this war, this violence, and we’re ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas.” Their music was subsequently boycotted and the media went into a frenzy.

After much of the dust had settled three years later, The Dixie Chicks released the single “I’m Not Ready to Make Nice” in which they expressed their anger at the backlash their comment received. They took a risk in declaring that they were still mad as hell and not ready to back down or make nice. Though they had experienced extreme hardship for expressing their sentiments once, they dared to express them again through their music. This time it led to success.

Whether you agree with what the Dixie Chicks said or not, you have to admire their courage to not back down- or make nice.


Today’s 4 Minute Writer

The Coffee House

I grab the door handle and march into the coffee-house. Marc and Kimmy are already there at the usual corner table. I give a slight nod as Kimmy looks in my direction.

We exchange hellos. I pull up a chair.

“What’d I miss?” I ask, working my arms out of my coat. 

“Just talking about the structure of today’s corporations and the need to shift to individualism and leadership from within to break the traditional hierarchical structures of the elite that don’t allow the expression of criticsm from the ranks.”

“Ah, the continuation of our discussion board convo.” I shake my  hair loose from under my low-profile felt hat and place it on the table.

“That’s the one. Hey Jill, what did you mean when you said online that the nature of the conversation needs to change?”

“Oh that,” I smirk, “ya, I’m starting to think we’re all just getting a little too pretentious and need to loosen up a little.”

Next thing I know I’ve got hot coffee from one end and iced mocha from the other splashing on my face as Marc and Kimmy storm off.

 “What? What’d I say wrong?”

Use the comment field to suggest a topic, submit your writing on today’s 4 Minute Writer topic (The Coffee House) or to comment.


Filed under Creativity, Writing

4 responses to “The Risk of Art

  1. “Creativity requires courage.” I really like that…and although I’ve never been the biggest Dixie Chicks fan (but that goes back to a lack of taste for country music more than their politics), I do admire that they put their reputations aside and instead stood up for what they believed in. My husband and I actually just finished making a film (you can see the trailer and find out more info at and the amounts of creativity from all parties involved was unbelievable! In the process, we actually did realize how much courage it all took and reflected on that last night, but I never linked the two. Interesting thought, thanks for this post. 🙂

  2. This is where I always come unstuck when I’m dealing with people. I just hate disappointing them. Writing, I find easier, because I can construct a watertight case and plug any gaps, check my thinking, take back any hastily written words. I’d love to have the directness of the narrator in your second piece.

    Thought provoking again today!

    • Ah, but the directness of the narrator was met with unhappy ends. Your approach is likely the better way to go in many situations.
      Your writing is indeed watertight- glad you started your blog a few months back so we can all enjoy it.

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