If I've accomplished anything through this blog, I hope I've inspired you to shift from seeing your life as a path to accepting it as a portfolio.
Life as a path defies the essence of the creative life.
It’s like an author trying to write only one book.
Or a poet trying to write one poem.
Or a painter working on a single painting.
Makes no sense to me.
The essence of the creative life is one of exploration and experimentation.
It’s about trying on new ideas and voices.
It's about testing new platforms and audiences.
It’s about wandering and wondering new landscapes.
It’s about finding comfort in the discomfort of obscurity, ignorance and failure.
And it's about hoping a few of the incredible people you meet along the way, will stay interested and invested as you morph and grow.
Success will come not through your idea, but your execution of the idea.
It is usually an opportunity that reveals itself as you're trying to do something else.
I have dedicated my creative life to this call and these values.
To never let "success" or others' expectations become the root note of my creative life and work.
To never get comfortable with what works in the moment, and cling to it for dear life.
This blog began on July 29, 2009. I called it Christian Con Queso.
I wanted it to be artsy and absurd. A sort of anti-blog. No lists. No five easy steps to success. No scan-friendly, recycled take-aways. No word vomit. No diatribes. No contemplating my navel.
At that time, I was writing a well-regarded blog on healthcare marketing.
In social media, I was tweeting and thinking about healthcare issues and challenges.
No one knew I was a poet.
No one knew I was an essayist.
No one knew I had 15 years invested in the craft of creative writing.
I needed a creative, cathartic outlet to feed and relieve my writing in the healthcare world.
I wanted to write very experimental stuff on a variety of topics.
So while smoke billowed from my bustling healthcare marketing factory, I started this little garden to see what might grow.
And I found myself enchanted.
So much so, I pulled the plug on my healthcare marketing blog and invested my energy in this blog. A move, at the time, that flew in the face of every marketing and blogging “best practice” in the book. Trust me, I know: I’m a 20-year marketing veteran who has published articles in the top marketing journals and magazines.
About a year and half ago, I re-named it Keitharsis, because I’ve always been a student of the history of catharsis in the Arts, religion and healthcare. If you’re not familiar with it, look it up on Wikipedia some time.
Catharsis, as a metaphor and idea, perfectly communicated my interest in teaching about how we can creatively use the unresolvable tensions that exist in our everyday, spiritual and creative lives. Plus, the word worked in a clever (at least I thought so) way with my first name.
Over time, I started to discover and explore ideas that not only surprised me—ideas about harmony vs. balance, portfolio vs. path, connection vs. expression—they really connected with and caught fire with a sizable number of influential writers, bloggers and artists...like you!
So a blog that started off random and eclectic—like an appetizer—has evolved into a very distinct and complex catalyst for releasing us to a creative life.
In the process, I have come to see myself not only as a writer and thinker, but as a sort of minister to creatives (by “minister” I mean one who tends to the specific needs of another).
We're nearing the three-year mark of this blog.
So what now? What next?
I think three years makes for a nice season.
And it’s time to enter a new season—a new challenge.
Will you join me?
Have I earned your interest?
This week will mark the end of Keitharsis as a blog.
Tomorrow will be the last "Word-in-a-Word Wednesday". And on Thursday, I will publish my last essay here.
In that piece, I will share where I’m headed in 2012 and beyond...hopefully with you along for the ride!
Does this mean I will no longer write to you about the creative life, harmony, portfolio living, tensions and connection?
I’m just getting warmed up!
All it means is I won’t be writing on this platform—this blog.
But there will be another.