Tag: garden

Why You Should Keep an Idea Garden

It’s easy to feel that nobody cares about your writing. Maybe your work keeps getting rejected by magazine editors. Maybe very few people read your blog posts because, among other things, you don’t know how to get their attention. In any case it’s discouraging and leads back to the perennial problem for creative people: how do I keep going?

One practice that works for me is to keep and maintain a garden or storehouse of ideas. Ralph Waldo Emerson kept notebooks he indexed and mined extensively for his lectures and books. I prefer a digital zettelkasten system and so far I’ve amassed around two hundred and thirty notes on anything and everything I’ve found interesting from a variety of fields such as philosophy, semantics, politics, music and economics, to name but a few. Anything goes.

The greatest benefit of an idea garden, as I see it, is that it can be a safe place for your writing, much like a journal, where ideas are accepted just as they are, while also being a place where the seeds of ideas can grow and bear fruit which we can, in time, take to the market.