Covers and Creativity

I wrote a bit today between Max's birthday party drop-off and pickup. It didn't feel all that productive, maybe 6 paragraphs in total of shitty first draft material. But I feathered in 9 resources and bookmarked a couple more along the way, and even found myself contributing to an open source project (procrastinating much?).

The weight of self-doubt crept in as I referenced so many other pieces of work as a part of my narrative. How much of this is original thought and how much is mere re-packaging of others' words? How much of my expertise is parroted truisms, anecdotes masquerading as one-size-fits-all advice, and Twitter thought-leader navel-gazing?

My editors helped me think through this, in writing and during our kickoff. They told me to be bold in my wielding my experiences and unafraid of sharing my perspective. Referencing and remixing the work of others in support of one's theories is the basis of all our consciousnesses. (That's a word I never wrote down before. I'll make sure to nix it from the book). It's our unique takes on the information and context of the world around us that adds to the conversation. The stitching together of all this, and my final patchwork quilt is the method and the message. No one has had the journey I have, and I have something to say about it.

I realized when mulling over this fear that it's a bit like a band's cover song. To those familiar with the source material, they may hear a new and refreshing rendition that adds a new layer of soul to the original. And better yet, those hearing the song for the first time via a cover get to enjoy the cover artist's vision first, and then in exploring a discography, discover a previously unknown depth. From both directions, newness and layered meaning breathes life into our community.

What are your favorite covers?

Here are some of my favorite Milky Chance covers: