I love searching for motivation in different places, but my favorite are museums. As a native New Yorker I have plenty to choose from. From Natural History to Sex to Cooper Hewitt, I’ve been to plenty. That said, I decided it was time to get out of the city and find a new museum to explore. So, on a rainy Tuesday I made the 35 minute commute to Greenwich, Connecticut to visit the Bruce Museum.
Since it was a weekday morning, I expected the museum would be (fairly) empty. I hadn’t expected to see a school bus pull up to the entrance and drop off screaming children. The rain, it seemed, provided a perfect excuse for a class trip. As I watched the tiny patrons, I contemplated driving out of the parking lot and finding a more inspirational bar. However, it was free-admission day at the museum (and probably too early for bars to be open in Connecticut). Reluctant, I grabbed my laptop and notebook (in case of motivation) and made my way toward the entrance.
I contemplated driving out of the parking lot and finding a more inspirational bar.
The screaming children were still assembling as I walked into the entrance. A woman standing behind the desk waived me in, as if secretly saying “please don’t leave“. It worked. I walked to the desk, coming to terms with the reality that my motivation journey included a bonus lesson in patience.
She immediately took notice of my abbreviated writing arsenal and asked if I was visiting for a school project. It was flattering to know she believed I looked young enough to be in school. In spite of the screaming children, I smiled and told her it was a personal project. She congratulated me with an enthusiasm I would like to bottle and save for a future emotional writing breakdown.
That’s when I had the realization that this project was about more than just writing my novel. Millions write novels (millions write blogs about writing novels). This is about being a participant in the creative community and bringing something I developed, from a simple idea, to the table. It’s the feeling of seeing my work on bookstore shelves or in the Kindle store. That moment when I finally see my name on a book that I wrote.
She congratulated me with an enthusiasm I would like to bottle and save for a future emotional writing breakdown.
In that one truly exuberant congratulatory comment, she made my entire motivation journey worthwhile. It didn’t matter how the rest of the trip went, because that was the moment. Then, she informed me that I would need to leave a donation…on Free Admission day?!
Books As Art Exhibit (Motivation?)
The remainder of my forty-five minute visit was slightly less motivational and more avoiding screaming children. I did see a strange exhibit featuring books transformed into pieces of artwork. The featured artists utilized “outdated books, including encyclopedias” to bring pages to life. It was interesting to know that one day my novel may be deemed outdated enough to be art. Head over to my Facebook page for photos.
As I made my way toward the door, the woman asked if I enjoyed my visit. I smiled and told her I got everything I needed…and then shamelessly asked if she knew of any open bars in the area.