When I was younger I never understood that whole ‘a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’ thing.
I’m not sure if it was because I just didn’t think hard enough about it or I was stupid but for some reason I thought it was some Captain Planet Environmentalist saying.
Like, it’s better to release birds because there will be two of them in the bush (as a result of breeding, so like, the bird you had would find another bird and they’d have baby birds…?) so it’s better to just… free the birds rather than keep them all to yourself where they won’t make little birds in the wild.
I was colossally wrong about the meaning of this phrase.
There are a million reasons why you can’t do that thing you need to do. I’ve been thinking about it in relation to some of my students recently, but also to myself as I’ve been doing a bunch of songwriting.
The fact of the matter is this. It is better to just do something than do nothing.
‘I just don’t know where to start.’
‘But I don’t know what to do next.’
‘I don’t know what to name my characters.’
‘I have writer’s block.’
Insert another stupid excuse which really doesn’t matter.
Someone really smart once told me that it’s better to get something down than nothing. In other words, a bird in the hand (in the context of this analogy, a Falcon used for hunting) is way better than two that are free, out of your control in the bush.
Sometimes we allow things to immobilize us. But as creative, we are like sharks. If you’re not moving, you’re dead. You always have to be chipping away regardless of how difficult it is, how bad you think it is, whether or not you are happy with the character’s names.
The truth is that things can always be changed, but going back and revising something is better than having nothing at all.
I reminded myself of this last night when I sat down to work on a song I was writing for submission for church. (I try to write music for church, by the way.)
‘But I suck at recording. And I can only record piano tracks at work and I’m not happy with the verses, and I suck at singing, so they won’t like it because they won’t see past how crappy my singing/playing is.’
Then I was like. Okay I can either wake up tomorrow and be exactly where I am now, or I can edge closer to the end game. So I picked up my tiny acoustic guitar with the broken neck that I actually can’t play very well because heck I play piano not guitar and sung my song. But today I am one step closer to the end game.
To be honest, I was sort of stoked with the results. https://soundcloud.com/gideonpress/changeless-acoustic