There’s a Reason the Circus is Thrilling

And it’s not because it’s safe.

Calculated? Yes.

Rehearsed and polished? Yes.

But definitely not safe.

I’m not suggesting that you add a high wire act or a lion to your art. (Unless that’s exactly what your art calls for.) But I would ask, “Where’s the risk?”

Where’s the thing you are unsure of? The thing you are unsure will work? The thing that’s keeping you up at night?

I had a teacher in high school that tried to include a “No Way” moment in every lesson. As in, “No way did he just do that!” or “No way did that just happen!” or “No way did that just work!”

Sometimes it didn’t work. But we sure were paying attention!

Safe has never resulted in thrills. Not for your audience, and certainly not for you.

(Originally posted on April 1, 2013)


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