Friday, January 10, 2020

Rachel Friedman, author of AND THEN WE GREW UP: On Creativity, Potential, and the Imperfect Art of Adulthood speaks with Janeane Bernstein on KUCI 88.9fm.

LISTEN to today's conversation
with featured guest Rachel Friedman.

One of Publishers Weekly’s Best Books of 2019! 

What happens when early artistic promise doesn’t materialize into fame and fortune?

Rachel Friedman was a talented viola player who attended the prestigious Interlochen Arts Camp as a kid. She quit music in college but never stopped fantasizing about what her life might be like if she had never put down her bow. In her 30s, a freelance writer in New York, she again found herself struggling with her fantasy of an artist’s life versus its much more complicated reality. In search of answers, she decided to track down her former Interlochen campmates—actors, writers, fellow musicians, and more—to find out how their own creative promise has translated into adult careers, relationships, and identities.


On Creativity, Potential, and the Imperfect Art of Adulthood

AND THEN WE GREW UP: On Creativity, Potential, and the Imperfect Art of Adulthood is a funny, insightful exploration of how Friedman and eight of her talented childhood friends have reckoned with creativity mid-life. Each of these men and women reveal important insights about creativity: that it doesn't have to be all or nothing, that success isn't always linear, that sometimes it's okay to quit.

Those interviewed include Michelle, a violist who got the musical career Friedman thought she wanted; Dalia, a former actress who struggles as an adult to satisfy her creative impulses; Sarah, a professional flutist who quits at 29 in spite of success; Daniel, whose day job at a special effects studio turns out to be far more fulfilling than his earlier aspirations to be a screenwriter. AND THEN WE GREW UP provides a warm and whip-smart way forward for anyone struggling to write, play music, or make art, while also balancing things like having a family, making rent, and finding contentment.

Creativity Myths Debunked:

· A real artist makes her full-time living from her art.

· A real artist is an “art monster” (unbalanced, selfish, lonely, uncompromising, etc.) who sacrifices everything in service to her art.

· A real artist’s hard work and ambition is eventually rewarded with “making it.”

· A real artist never gives up.

· A real artist has a sustained and specific creative output.

· Someone out there – whether outlier or peer – is living the exact life we could have had if we made different choices or had more talent or gotten luckier, etc.

· A real artist is free.

· A real artist is special.

Find out more about

Twitter: @RachelFriedman

Rachel Friedman is the author of And Then We Grew Up and The Good Girl’s Guide to Getting Lost. Her work has appeared in The Best Women’s Travel Writing, The McSweeney’s Book of Politics and Musicals, The New York Times, Creative Nonfiction, and The Chronicle of Higher Education, among others. She lives in Brooklyn, New York with her son.

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