“How to Create Creativity: A Step-by-Step Approach, ” by Charis

Jun 3rd, 2020 | By | Category: Nonfiction, Prose

WARNING:  This essay does lead to embarrassing side effects and should not be ingested, injected, or placed anywhere near the body.  It has been known to cause low sperm counts in stray cats.


Often times, people wonder if creativity can be taught, just like any other skill.  I’m sure that this is a question you’ve regularly pondered.  The inconceivable answer is “yes.”

In fact, medical science is closing in on ways to inject creativity into an easy-to-swallow pill.  Until that point, the steps to creating creativity have been distilled into the directions below, which should be followed in a rote manner for best results.

The first step, when confronting a task that requires creativity to complete, is to complain a lot.  Nothing has ever been accomplished without a great of complaining.

In fact, complaining has led to most of history’s great advances, according to pseudo-scientific studies as confirmed by non-scientific guessing.  We would have never reached the moon, for example, had people not complained about how it blocked our view of the stars at night.  Of course, neither Gerald Ford nor Jimmy Carter would have ever become president had people not been complaining about those low food prices and lack of lines at the gas stations.  You can be sure that where there’s complaining, such giant leaps forward are sure to follow.

Once you’ve complained a great deal, you are ready for the next step to creativity.  You must steal ideas.

This, of course, brings up the ubiquitous debate: which came first, the idea or the thief?  This controversy, however, is beyond the scope of this paper, so we will conveniently skirt the issue (leaving the reader to ponder why we bothered to bring it up in the first place).

The obvious question, then, is, “From where can one steal ideas?”  This one fellow tends to ask such obvious questions a lot (and refer to himself in the third person).

You could steal ideas from television, since you almost certainly watch it all of the time (which is why you’ve likely sought the aid of an essay on “How to Create Creativity” in the first place); but most of these ideas are pretty worn.  TV suggests that you should spend money quite a bit, either because it will make you more sexually appealing or because you’ll wind up spending time with the sexually appealing.  It also tells you that you should be more politically central than you are now (even if you are already on a fence you could likely do with balancing on your tip-toes).  Of course, television also reminds you to paint your house (the more times the better), to vote (the more times the better), buy a new vacuum cleaner, change your underwear, brush your teeth, put on your deodorant, and that rich celebrities are both better than you and above the law.  While these are all great ideas, most people have already heard them quite a bit, because they also watch too much TV.

Now you’re probably thinking that you’ll go to the movies to steal your ideas.  Unfortunately, the movies are just television shows that think they’re artistic.  Sure, the big screen lets you see more blood, guts, and sex than does your little (99-inch) television—unless you have cable, the Fox network, or access to video streaming, but most of the ideas are the same.

I’m about to reveal a little-known secret to you, so read closely (while covering the paper so no-one else can see these words):  Books also contain ideas.  Now you might be thinking to yourself, “Aren’t books antiquated in this day and age when we have access to file servers filled with data and educational pictures on the Internet?”  And that’s exactly the point: no one else reads books so no one else knows that they contain ideas!

This is the mother lode of ideas I’m revealing to you.  But wait, there’s more!  If you hurry in today you can receive a FREE membership at your local library and have access to thousands of books (filled with millions of ideas, and one or two good ones) entirely for FREE (I’ve said “FREE” twice to increase the impact and because you probably need to hear everything twice since television has decreased your attention span—if I’ve already said that before it’s because I also watch too much television)

But don’t just go into reading with the expectation that ideas will jump out at you from any book you read.  You have to choose carefully.  As the old saying goes, “Always judge a book by its cover.”  If the book has a fawning quote on the jacket from a reviewer (or worse yet, from a New York reviewer), it’s no good.  It’s also no good if the cover has a picture, has raised lettering, or an author’s name that is larger than the title.  Add such books to your burn pile (the library doesn’t mind—they like to get rid of the excess from time to time).

You’ll want an old-looking book if you want to get some really good ideas.  I’ve personally found that hard-cover books (especially those which are green) contain the best ideas (but I’m also color blind).

This is where the hard part of my little plan for creating creativity comes in: you’ll need to actually crack the book open to make use of it.  You might be a little scared the first time you open a book, wondering exactly what will pop out.  Most of the time ghosts don’t, and neither do weasels (but this isn’t always true).  I’ve found that as long as you open the book extremely slowly—and with your eyes shut, usually nothing bad will happen (although I cannot legally be held responsible for anything I’m writing here—I’m drunk).  Then, open your eyes (with the assistance of needles if need be), and read the words.  You have now embarked on the most dangerous leg of your journey into the world of creativity.

Don’t just settle for ideas from one book—that’s the sort of blunder that got our television and movie writers into their current state.  Read many books, and often.  The old adage says to “Drink a margarita a day to keep the doctor away” (which explains why I’m now drunk—although I could currently keep about 7 doctors away).  Since a book stands about twice the size of a margarita glass (in most of your less-generous bars), it stands to reason that you should read twice as many books a day.  In fact, the general rule is 3 books to every alcoholic beverage you consume (which is why I’m well read).  Go ahead, take your six-pack to the library and settle in for a spell; they won’t mind.

The final step (once you’ve managed to sober up) is to make these ideas your own.  Combine them in unexpected ways.

You do this for two reasons:  First and foremost, to make them unrecognizable so no one can accuse you of stealing them in the first place.  Second, because this is how new things are made.  You wouldn’t expect to see forests in barren wastelands (this would ruin the view and lower property values) or jet skiers inside of a snow globe.  Logically, then, you can’t expect new ideas to sprout out of your ears unless you’ve filled your head with water, potting soil, a heating lamp, and ceramic trolls (or plastic pink flamingoes, for you upper-crust types) first.  Once you’ve managed to fill your head with all of those pre-existing, already-thought-of things, you’ll be amazed at how many new ideas come to you.

If you’ve followed this advice word-for-word, you’ll likely now need either an AA meeting or surgery to remove a plastic pink flamingo from your nose.  You are well on your way to creativity!


Charis decided to become wealthy so he chose to be a poet.  He was regularly published in small journals until he succumbed to an addiction to limericks.  He then compounded this error by becoming the world’s first epic limericyst.  In this deluded state, ever since, he has circulated poems of 45 pages in length in a vain attempt to see his words printed.   May God have mercy on his soul.

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