Who’s always trying to improve themselves and hone their creativity? Anyone constantly looking for tips and tricks to expand their creative flow? Do you want some of that inspiration in a non-traditional format? Then check out the latest book, Creative Quest, from Questlove.
Creative Quest is part memoir, part self-help, and entirely entertaining. I tend to read memoirs, self-help, and other non-fiction books via audiobook, especially when the author reads their own work. Hearing what an author emphasizes provides more impact. Additionally, audiobooks of this nature also provide music sample and other goodies too. Creative Quest certainly satisfies on all those fronts. But at the same time, I wish I had a hard copy (and will very likely end up buying a hard copy to re-read).
Questlove drops so many creative truths in a way that’s different from other books about harnessing creativity. He brings examples from his own life and draws on a variety of creative forms, including cooking and comedy. In Creative Quest, Questlove conveys the importance of distractions and departures using both existing theories and varied examples. He links to process of curation to gardening which communicates both the necessity and the benefits of curation. And he dives into networks, social and otherwise, the importance of meditations, and more.
There are so many great things to consider. Things that need to be mulled and digested. Listening to Creative Quest made me regret not having a physical copy. I want to highlight and dog ear and make notes in a copy of Creative Quest (and probably will eventually).
On Boredom and Silence
Ironically enough, some of the wisdom that most resonated had to deal with silence and boredom.
“I let the distraction become boredom. And when the distraction shifts into boredom, that’s the seed of something creative. On the face of it that doesn’t make sense. Boredom seems like the least creative field. It seems like numbness. But it’s actually a way of clearing space for an idea to spring back up…….Boredom for all of you now, is about putting down the phone and letting a little silence into your day. It’s about not being so compulsive about listening and watching and participating. It’s about hanging back and then extending yourself into the space that’s creative.”
Let’s just sit with that for a moment, shall we? And when you’re ready, come back from that silence and pick up a copy of Creative Quest to find your own creative truths.
About Creative Quest
A unique new guide to creativity from Questlove—inspirations, stories, and lessons on how to live your best creative life
Questlove—musician, bandleader, designer, producer, culinary entrepreneur, professor, and all-around cultural omnivore—shares his wisdom on the topics of inspiration and originality in a one-of-a-kind guide to living your best creative life.
In Creative Quest, Questlove synthesizes all the creative philosophies, lessons, and stories he’s heard from the many creators and collaborators in his life, and reflects on his own experience, to advise readers and fans on how to consider creativity and where to find it. He addresses many topics—what it means to be creative, how to find a mentor and serve as an apprentice, the wisdom of maintaining a creative network, coping with critics and the foibles of success, and the specific pitfalls of contemporary culture—all in the service of guiding admirers who have followed his career and newcomers not yet acquainted with his story.
Whether discussing his own life or channeling the lessons he’s learned from forefathers such as George Clinton, collaborators like D’Angelo, or like-minded artists including Ava DuVernay, David Byrne, Björk, and others, Questlove speaks with the candor and enthusiasm that fans have come to expect. Creative Quest is many things—above all, a wise and wide-ranging conversation around the eternal mystery of creativity.
Questlove is a drummer, DJ, producer, culinary entrepreneur, designer, New York Times bestselling and James Beard Award–nominated author, and cofounder of Philadelphia’s most influential hip-hop group, the Roots. He is the musical director for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, where the Roots serve as the house band, and a four-time Grammy Award–winning musician. He is also an adjunct professor at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts.
Follow Questlove across the internet to learn more about his various creative pursuits.
Who are your favorite creative inspirations? Do you have any other tips for honing or improving your creative flow?