The Seven Stages of The Creative Process

Posted on April 11, 2013 by admin

The same process that creates one thing creates everything. And that process goes through seven stages, says Orna Ross, in the first of a new series.

P1020101 That process goes through seven stages that connect and loop around each other in aninteractive waltz. If what we’re creating comes easy to us – family dinner, F-R-E-E-writing, a dollar – we don’t tend to notice the stages.

But if what we’re making is more challenging – conference catering for 300, a published novel, a million dollars – becoming more aware of the process is essential.

With conscious creation, knowing which stage of the process we’re in allows us to follow the right steps at the right time — and enjoy the waltz as we swirl.

The seven stages of the creative process are: Intention -> Incubation -> Investigation -> Composition -> Amplification -> Clarification -> Completion.

Expressed as actions: Choosing, Germinating, Researching, Drafting, Deepening, Editing, Finishing and Going Public.

These stages are not mutually exclusive, as implied by separating and laying them out in a list like this. But doing so enables us to observe and understand the quite different challenges inherent in each.

One of the main reasons that creative projects become derailed is because we bring in thoughts and behaviours appropriate to a different stage. A common example is writers who try to edit into shape (amplification stage) their early ideas and insights (incubation stage), instead of allowing them full formation.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be looking at each of these stages in detail and, using different examples to demonstrate how an understanding of the stages of the process makes creating anything a whole lot easier.

Let’s waltz!

What Others Are Saying

  1. Pingback: Living in Lemony Land | Orna Ross

  2. T.S. Rothe April 15, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    Thank you for this Orna- I cannot wait to read more!

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