Managing Creativity: Exploring the Paradox

We are in the last throws of preparing the texts for the forthcoming ‘Managing Creativity: Exploring the Paradox’, a book edited by Barbara Townley and Nic Beech, published by Cambridge University Press. I contributed a chapter on my favourite lemon squeezer. After writing a code of practice for work, various course reports, three chapters of my PhD thesis and a number of articles for a Spanish tendencies webzine, tackling a specialist, yet broad audience was a breath of fresh air.

I liked participating in something that is beyond my PhD, something that the degree will hopefully enable me to do more of, and more often. I like writing. I like writing books, even. I will go as far as to say that I like the publishing process despite editors, going over words time and time again and working with writing done over two years ago. Publishing is not for the faint hearted, or the impatient. Neither is writing, I am finding out. I am going to contradict myself: I hate writing, but I like to have written and seeing the cover of the book, with the title of my chapter and my name next to it (its accent in the right place) brought me that proud feeling, that well-being.

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All the more because, as I mention in my chapter, I am coming into this as an outsider. I am a fine artist, writing about a design piece for a book on management. Of course I wasn’t sure about it but I followed my friend Glyn’s advice: when you are starting, never say no. To anything. I was lucky that the team that edited the book have been very supportive and have done an excellent job. They were very kind to strangers. And from that position, one I know very well (because I constantly seek it), I have been able to produce something I am quite happy with, as it gives an outlet to a bit of research that, sadly, did not have any place in the 40,000 words of my PhD. Still, readers will find my usual obsessive self in my words; there is also seduction, psychoanalysis and admiration of a creative piece of design that I am very happy to own.

With thanks to Charlotte who bought Juicy Salif for me when I left my last job and told me about her shopping experience, which partly inspired the chapter.