I quite like Elizabeth Gilbert, but this was not always true. I read Eat, Pray, Love because some dear family members raved about it on Facebook. I found Gilbert spoiled and precious. I liked her more after seeing the film adaptation, in part because I like Julia Roberts. I began appreciating Gilbert through her Facebook page, shared by a writer/artist friend. Big Magic sealed my new assessment.
Gilbert encourages all of us to embrace our artistic impulses. Art becomes a way to survive modern life, and particularly, although she does not frame it this way, the crises of midlife.
“By completely absorbing our attention for a short and magical spell, it [creativity] can relieve us temporarily from the dreadful burden of being who we are.”
Gilbert’s message could echo the Nike slogan, Just Do It. Do not worry about what others think. Do not worry about perfection. The process has value. Focus on the big magic.
Read the book. The chapters are short. Some are better than others. They are easily skimmed for the best bits.