There is a fine line between creatively eccentric and absolutely nuts. I know this.
The creatively eccentric people are mostly normal. They have regular jobs and a variety of friends and they function pretty well in the large majority of situations. They can be a little odd in the way they dress or talk or think, but they have this amazing ability to be themselves – eccentricity and all. They can whip up a new song right in front of you or write a poem in three minutes or paint a masterpiece over the weekend, and they even find ways to get paid for that effortless creation. Everyone just loves them for their different-ness and they are always being called upon to do their thing.
I know people like this. Quite a few. And I always come away from spending time with them feeling motivated, inspired, happy.
The absolutely nuts people are mostly not normal. They are perpetually unemployed because there isn’t a job out there that will accommodate their creative genius. I have italicized the words, because these people are neither creative or genius. They are the ones who truly believe there is no one in the world who understands them. The few friends they have are also absolutely nuts and none of them can carry on a coherent conversation. They labor for months and years and decades, even, on the one piece of music or literature or art that they tell you will one day catapult them into fame and fortune. One has to wonder if there’s any work in progress at all because they won’t let you see it.
I know people like this. Too many. I can’t spend a lot of time with them because they suck the life out of me.
So, which of the two groups are the truly creative?
It’s a fine line.