Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
After Page One: Creativity


A guest post to motivate, encourage, and inspire


Giving Birth to Creativity


I spent most of my life thinking I was not creative. When others would talk about their artistic endeavors, I’d joke, “I don’t have a creative bone in my body.” Creativity was not valued in my youth.

Making good grades, completing household chores and babysitting my five younger brothers were important. Most everything else was deemed frivolous.

Then along came my one and only son, Nick. His birth sparked a creative lust. I needed to express more than my breast milk. Creating this beautiful little boy made me feel like I could create other things.

For the first few years of his life, I scrap booked. I thrilled with my pages of cute layouts, decorated with stickers and fancy paper borders. I was mostly arranging pre cut fabricated materials, but it was more artsy than anything I’d ever done.

Then I tried a drawing class. This took guts. I could draw the outline of a house and I could draw a fish. I almost walked out of the first class when it hit me that my fellow classmates would see my scribblings. But the teacher was terrific and somehow made that classroom a safe place. I was soon drawing at home, in parks, on vacation. I didn’t care who saw my drawings.

And then I started writing. My real passion. I was afraid that I’d have trouble finding topics, finding my stories. But I don’t have any trouble finding things to write about, only trouble finding time to write.

I like that my now 16-year-old son is growing up in a home that values time spent on creative projects. That he sees me sometimes (but not often enough) choose a morning of writing over a morning of house cleaning. He thinks his mom is creative. He doesn’t know he’s my inspiration, my first and best creation.


Join our After Page One series.  We’re looking for 300 to 500-word guest posts that motivate, inspire, and encourage other mama-writers, and we’d love to feature YOUR thoughts about getting started, getting back to a writing project, integrating writing with motherhood, reading, or having a positive attitude.   The list is endless, but here are some questions that might help you get started. We’ll publish a short bio at the bottom of your post so readers can learn more about you and your projects.

Marianne Lonsdale writes personal essays and short stories, and is slowly cranking out a novel set in 1991 Oakland, California, about a crazy romance. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle, Literary Mama, Fiction365, Pulse, and has aired on KQED. She’s a cofounder of the group Write On Mamas and is honored to be an alumna of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. Marianne lives with her husband, Michael, and son, Nicholas, in Oakland.

More from

I love stories about finding the courage to create and share. And of course, stories about our inspirations.
How wonderful that it was your son who inspired you to create more! And, how brave of you to have followed the call!
Just read your little story. I hope it inspires someone today..So happy for you.
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