A Creative Life Is A Life Of Risk

These are my boots. I wear them everyday, even to formal events. I own two of the exact same pair in case something happens to one of them. Some folks call them combat boots, which feels right a lot of the time because being an artist is like a war: blood, sweat, rejection, heartbreak, repeat.

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When I went to the army surplus store to buy the second pair, I discovered that they are, in fact, made for paratroopers. They’re called Jump Boots. This reminded me of a favorite quote by Ray Bradbury, “You’ve got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down.”

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People don’t realize how much cliff jumping is involved in the creative life, whether you’re a writer, a visual artist, a performing artist, an entrepreneur, or an innovator. We spend many of our waking hours thinking What the hell am I doing? I must be insane. But we hold our breath, close our eyes, and jump off that creative cliff, hoping the wings come before the splat. And they do, they always do. Mine are made out of cardboard, safety orange duct tape, and the love of my friends and family.And it really helps to have the right boots for jumping.

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