I'll maybe write an actual review later. But basically: Lynda Barry doesn't ever use the word "religion" in this book but I think it's what she's circling around. It's a book about drawing, but it doesn't really "teach" you to draw. The idea is, and it's one that I subscribe to completely: doing creative things is very good for your soul. The trick, and the trick is the hard part, is that you can't worry about purpose. You have to be willing to spend time in Not Knowing, just creating things for their own sake. And the SECRET trick of it is that the point is not what you create, it's what happens to your mind and soul while you're doing that creating.
This book was a good note to end the year on for me. I spent the entire year on a draft of a book, and I'm about 90% done. I thought I might be finished by the end of the year, but it has turned out differently than I expected. But every week this year I sat down in front of a blank page or screen and just started writing, with no real expectations, and have been terrified and surprised in different ways on just about every page. I don't know what this book is, what it's about, what it means, why I'm writing it, or what I'd do with it when it's done, if anything, but I just kept going. Every week, I kept going. Deans encouraged me, and I kept going. I spent an entire year in Not Knowing. And it was a very hard year, but I'm still here, and I'm still going, and writing was definitely what got me through.
There's a lot more to say about this, but it's New Year's. We'll talk more next year.