ABSENCE OF FORMULA (Read time 0:51) Ever worry that your art or products are not commercial enough? Ever think about “reinventing” your work to fit the mold because you read somewhere the “new formula” or the “new rules” for making it today? I think that redirecting your art just to make it more mainstream and commercial would just provoke your current fans & customers to look the other way, because to them, you’d become just another one of the 250,000 other “hopefuls” attempting to go “viral” or “socialize” your way to fame and fortune. In the old days, we called that “selling out!” Great work is not created out of a “common” formula. It’s actually created out of an “absence of formula!” And the only true “formula for success” for any pro artist & entrepreneur is the one that you cook up in the sanctity of your own creative space, whether that's in the studio or the penthouse. That sacred time of day (or night) when you get completely consumed in the work you love, creating form, inventing truth, grappling with your muse, and battling with your inner demons of doubt & fear. It’s during those times when the crazy creative genius (inside you) gives life to incredible ideas, and produces extraordinary work, and designs ingenious ways of sharing and spreading great entertainment that inspires us, and great products & services that benefit all of us. THAT’S the new formula. Heck, that’s the ONLY formula! And it’s not found in a bloggers tip-list or a consultants how-to book. It’s found in your room...in your office...in your home studio...in your creative work-space. And it’s mostly found in the deepest purest depths of your creative soul. You’re an artist, an entrepreneur and this is your destiny! And the only true formula or “plan of action” designed for your personal success is the one that YOU write. Your thoughts...
J Michael Dolan

ABSENCE OF FORMULA (Read time 0:51)

Ever worry that your art or products are not commercial enough? Ever think about “reinventing” your work to fit the mold because you read somewhere the “new formula” or the “new rules” for making it today? I think that redirecting your art just to make it more mainstream and commercial would just provoke your current fans & customers to look the other way, because to them, you’d become just another one of the 250,000 other “hopefuls” attempting to go “viral” or “socialize” your way to fame and fortune. In the old days, we called that “selling out!”

Great work is not created out of a “common” formula. It’s actually created out of an “absence of formula!” And the only true “formula for success” for any pro artist & entrepreneur is the one that you cook up in the sanctity of your own creative space, whether that's in the studio or the penthouse. That sacred time of day (or night) when you get completely consumed in the work you love, creating form, inventing truth, grappling with your muse, and battling with your inner demons of doubt & fear. It’s during those times when the crazy creative genius (inside you) gives life to incredible ideas, and produces extraordinary work, and designs ingenious ways of sharing and spreading great entertainment that inspires us, and great products & services that benefit all of us. THAT’S the new formula. Heck, that’s the ONLY formula! And it’s not found in a bloggers tip-list or a consultants how-to book. It’s found in your room...in your office...in your home studio...in your creative work-space. And it’s mostly found in the deepest purest depths of your creative soul. You’re an artist, an entrepreneur and this is your destiny! And the only true formula or “plan of action” designed for your personal success is the one that YOU write.

Your thoughts...

COMMENTS


Posted By randy
Originality
Great post! This is something that many of us already know -- but need to hear it over and over again. Thanks for that. Funny how every so often there is a new sensation -- an artist who emerges out of "nowhere" with a completely unique style and sound. And suddenly they are the latest thing... and thousands of people attempt to mimic them in hopes of the same. The truth is, most of them would have be happier if they had stayed original and true to themselves.


Posted By joe
formulaless
michael.. how is it that you always write a blog exactly about how I'm thinking now? I'm stuck in this little swiss village with a local music school that is a totally cliched commercial endeavour.. they call themselves "world class" but only play worn out rock licks that we've heard a million times and can be played by almost everybody.. no original songs and no interest in original music.. they try to bury everything I do.. I have 116 songs on the net.. I was an award winning composer with recorded and published compositions and songs.. 2 CDs with all original music.. my take on jazz and rock is original.. I guess a threat to those noncreative cover tuners.. but they rule the area mafia style.. whatever :-)


Posted By mark grove
Being Innovative Despite The Obstacles
Thanks Mike, I guess we make it seem like being innovative to be an overwhelming task. It's not. I think to the articles I write for musicians on how to create their own media press kits,getting media attention and working with bands, labels and agents. When I think I've dried up the ways to publicize bands, I come up with new ways for bands to do just that. Whether they use my tips is up to them. If anyone has any tips, send me a line. Thanks again Mike. Mark in Canada


Posted By wichampi
Alone but not alone
You know,it entirely depends on what the creation is. If orders being sent to the tv ad writer to write an up tempo,happy little tune for orange juice is the event of the day,then the writer's own creativity has already been predetermined. But it takes talent to adapt to "orders".In non commercial creations we have the freedom to be 100% original...in painting sculpture,poetry,novels (minus the editor) Music ultimately evolves into a sharing team with arrangers,producers and sharing-that in itself- demands creative skills on a whole other level.The original creation is ours ! To what extent it is altered and messed around with depends on our taste and integrity.And yes,our respect for the opinions of others.


Posted By brenda
Great timing!
Being a music artist, creating and sharing music is what I enjoy doing the most. So when it comes time to evaluate results and make some readjustments, dealing with the content of the art would seem to be the most enjoyable path to follow. And yet the truth is, most of the work to be done has to do with learning about marketing and getting better at it (not as enjoyable but just as important). Stay honest and get better at letting people know what you're doing.


Posted By Doris Spears
Absence of Formula
Thank you. From my soul.


Posted By Steven Rotblatt
Formula
I have a bit of a different take on this. Sometimes, no matter whether you are a great artist or modest, it is smart to understand the tools that are out there and adapt. I think an artist needs to be very wary of staying put and not trying things. Sometimes, when a new market or clever way of getting work out there becomes available, an artist might seriously consider whether they can adapt to that new form without losing anything. For example, I have a business called Rubber Chicken Cards, an animated greeting card site. Recently we added another kind of card, in order to adapt to a changing market. This change, looking to gather more market share, has opened up new worlds of marketing ideas and oppt


Posted By

Well said!!! says I.


Posted By Adrian
Say what ?
" battling with your inner demons of doubt & fear." man, that is heavy. I dunno if that's what I feel during the creative process, but that is heavy stuff. for me Time is what I battle most with, as in having enough of it to allow my process to run it's course. all too often I am watching the clock because I know time is running out.


Posted By susan

good stuff. thanks!


Posted By mingo
New Coke Anyone?
New Coke - changed the formula, didn't exactly work out


Posted By Jeff Kingfisher
Timely and True
I know what you say here is true, I know it to the core of my being; and yet while my lips often repeat this truth, inside I quietly forget it. It's very helpful to hear it from both you and your readers - many thanks.


Posted By vivian
creation
You got it right! Creation come from nothing or see beyond what is.


Posted By Rachel
Thanks Michael :-)
Very encouraging...sometimes all you hear is silence...because you ARE always in your creative space...and it's awefully nice when someone comes along and tells you they like very much what you are creating...that is just like gold to me...that what we come up with is loved by some...!!!! Yeah!!! So wonderful! Have a wonderful wintery day!! Rachel


Posted By Ken Budka
Pure & Simple
Nice!


Posted By Bob
Don't bear the pander
As a former writer with an alt-weekly, I was subject to the sad, slow decline of the publication when the money guys decreed we deliver them the youth demo they craved. Stories about strippers and rappers went out front, and our loyal readers (and our souls) went out the door. And the kids? Hell, they don't read print! Had we stuck with our regular readers, maybe we'd still be in print today.


Posted By craig
losing my faith
There are times when I am not sure that even my best songs are worth hearing. I'm sure that there is something deeper at work that makes me doubt the material that was spawned out of my most intimate moments,but trying to overcome it is a daunting task. Then I resort to my simple songs that were written for fun, thinking that if my more meaningful songs can't reach people, perhaps the catchier tunes will put me on the map. If that is 'selling out', it could be the only way my best songs will ever reach the marketplace.


Posted By Dae
My sentiments exactly
As someone who just realized this I can say you are absolutely right. Never be ashamed of the real you like I was. It will only lead to misery in the end. Let's face it. If you want fame and fortune, you ARE NOT a true artist. Those are end results of following passion. If they are your aim and you censor yourself you are committing suicide. Slowly and surely. Know thyself and embrace it!


Posted By Robin Noll
Absence of Formula
Thank you for your insight. I have been struggling how to freshen up our mag after 30 years of doing it the same. I will take the time TODAY to go it alone with pen and paper and create a new direction. So enjoy your blogs.


Posted By Laura Cannell
Thanks for the Reminder
The ideas which do work come from within, and no amount of looking at how other people do it will work. Thanks for the post it was perfect timing and greatly reassuring.


Posted By Michelle Wynn
Slow Growth
No formula is the best formula. I think the best path is the one Iím on now: slow, consistently evolving work, with an ever-growing community of fans. Thatís my new formula.


Posted By Rami
Go deeper
I've been of late reviewing 2012. I've been looking under Rocks and in other people's heads for that winning formula. Truthfully I have Been looking for a shortcut to get me "there" faster. "there's gotta be a better way" I tell myself. I've think I need to go deeper, in myself, in my creative Spirit, in my work.

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2011 Posts:
• GRAND FINALE!
• 2-DOZEN WAYS TO MAKE 2012 BETTER!
• DEAR PRUDENCE (read time :43)
• COMPLAIN ALL YOU WANT! (read time :23)
• IMAGINE (read time :57)
• WEEKENDS (read time :33)
• PIXAR LETTER (read time 1:03)
• RESISTANCE CAN KILL (read time 1:37)
• AMATEURS vs. PROS (read time :57)
• REQUIEM FOR A HONEYMOON (read time 1:09)
• CAN YOU FEEL IT? (read time 1:47)
• BRANCUSI'S VICTORY CRY  (read time :57)
• SAIL AWAY (read time :43)
• ARTISTS RULE! (read time 1:23)
• USE IT OR LOSE IT (read time :53)
• START HERE (read time 1:27)
• UNCERTAINTY (read time 1:19)
• STOPPED BY CALAMITY (read time 1:37)
• ART (read time :57)
• AUDACIOUS & UNSTOPPABLE (read time 2:37)
• WRITERS BLOCK (read time 1:47)
• BLOW AWAY DISTRACTIONS (read time :31)
• WAY OF THE CREATIVE WARRIOR (read time :27)
• GOOD BYE LADY LUCK (read time 1:53)
• CONFIDENCE IS EVERYTHING (read time 1:23)
• DEADLINE OR DIE! (read time 1:53)
• THE WIZARDS CLOCK (Read time :47)
• CREATIVE PRIVACY (read time :43)
• THE KOBE IN ME (read time 1:13)
• READY, SET, GO! (read time :47)
• EVE OF DISTRACTION (read time 1:29)
• KEEP YOUR FEET UP! (read time 1:09)
• JUST ONE MORE FOOT (read time 1:57)
• MY MUSE DOESN'T CARE (read time :39)
• MISUNDERSTOOD (read time 1:19)
• DUMP IT! (read time 1:19)
• IS IT WORTH IT? (read time :49)
• THE 24 HOUR RULE (read time 2:21)
• MONK ON THE MOUNTIAN (read time: a lifetime)
• “IT” (read time 1:37)
• BORN TO SHOW (read time 3:37)
• THE STING OF REJECTION (read time 1:13)
• LESSON FROM A ROCK STAR (Read time 0:27)
• THUMB POWER (read time 1:59)
• EXPOSING THE WIZARD (read time (1:13)
• HEY, WHAT’S THE BIG IDEA? (read time 1:37)
• THE WAITING WARRIOR (Read time 0:41)
• PLAY AT YOUR OWN RISK (read time :57 sec)
• AUTONOMY HIGHWAY (read time :35 sec)
• LIMPIDITY (read time :45 sec)
• WHY I MEDITATE (read time 1:00 min)
• YOUR SHADOW AGENDA (Read time 0:59)
• WHY I SOLD MY BUSINESS (read time 6:33)
• BARENAKED PROBITY (read time 1:47 min)
• THE FANTASIES OF POSSIBILITY (read time 4:17 min)
• THE TUG OF WAR (read time 5:09 min)