I hear the same story over and over that alcohol and creativity go hand in hand. Great writers, poets, musician, actors all drank and in their delirium created great works. Or did they? Are these just drunken folk tales we spin to feed the alcohol deception?

A Farewell to Arms:

“The sandwiches came and I ate three and drank a couple more martinis. I had never tasted anything so cool and clean. They made me feel civilized.”

Is there an argument to say these masterpieces were created in-spite of the alcohol? 

And what about all the alcohol free creative genius that has shaped our world?

In my survey of one, I have only recently re-discovered my creative side since I stopped drinking. The unveiling of my authentic naked mind has opened up my world once again to all those ideas and dreams that were lost in the fog of hangovers.

We are all creative it’s just that most of us have our creative spark dampened by age, society and comparison. If we can’t produce a masterpiece by the time we are 25 then we’ve missed the boat. Yet as children we were all painters, writers, astronauts and mermaids. We could go wherever our creative minds would take us and were never afraid to express ourselves.

Don’t misunderstand me, I could dream up plenty of ideas after a few beers, but like most drunken dreams they were flushed down the toilet of never going to happen. Yet once you take alcohol out the equation and you go against the grain something happens, something strange and exciting. All of a sudden you don’t care about what people think anymore. The majority are going one way and you have decided to go the other. There is something powerful in this. I now know that on the whole – conventional wisdom is wrong. I am fed up of being held back by societal pressure. If I want to create something I will and if people think it’s rubbish so be it. I would rather experiment and try than be afraid.

Writing for me is a way of thinking and expressing thoughts on the page. I find it so much easier this way. Am I the greatest writer of all time? Absolutely not, in truth if spell check were not available you would barely understand me. But I love it and for me that’s all that matters.

I also love to paint and draw yet left these creative arts behind years ago. Yet now I have a little more time, a little more energy and the confidence to experiment – it’s game on.

After a recent trip to Ireland, where I spent many years and married an Irish girl, I wrote a tiny poem. I have not attempted to write a poem since preschool. But I loved it, the whole process made me smile.

Yet I find it both frustrating and ridiculous that it’s not macho to write a poem or paint. The lads would take great delight in ripping any attempt to shreds. In truth for many it would be a sign of weakness or madness! This is the problem and what stops so many people exploring their creative side because they are scared what others will say. Isn’t this sad.

But really who cares, do you? Do you care what others think?

Caring what other people thought kept me doing something for too long that was terrible for me. I also know that caring what other people thought has kept me in a box for too long.

So I encourage you all to get creative: it’s right there within you. We are all creative. This is what sets us apart.

‘My Island.
My omnipresent beauty,
My Ireland.’

 

Andy Ramage

 

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