The Cost of Inspiration

Inspiration (the spark of creativity) is a well.

That well can be in one of many conditions. At its best, it’s filled with a welcome overflow of water that drowns you until your mind is crying out to fill a usable container with its bounty. At its worst, it’s a barren drought that you scrape the sides of, trying to extract anything meaningful or significant.

Regardless of its current status, the well of inspiration is hard to pin down. I can go months without trying to even dip into it, but with this constant nagging that I should really check in on it. Many things can cause me to want to take a closer look: listening to good music, browsing my Soundcloud and noticing I haven’t added anything in a while, acquiring new sound apps or libraries, or even just having the right hardware around and working.

Sigh.

When I first got my M-Audio Axiom 25, I almost immediately made a song with it. Soon after, I made another. The simple act of having a hardware interface with knobs, sliders, and keys put manually inputting notes into a sequencer to shame. Too long had I done it the inelegant, difficult way because I had no other option. All of a sudden, doing the simplest, basic keyboard techniques was within my grasp. It probably tripled my expressiveness right then and there.

And then, later, the Axiom stopped working. It was, in effect, useless. Grarr.

Ever since then, I’ve felt like any inspiration to create music (or work on stuff that had laid dormant *cough* Dumeh *cough*) I might have is temporarily hampered. Going back to the old way of inputting notes sounds tedious and horrible, and I don’t want to do it.

So, what to do? Order a new one, I guess. Gotta throw money in the well from time to time.

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