In the graphic below, Phil Cousineau (Joseph Campbell’s biographer) depicts the creative journey as a circle, because it often repeats before moving on. It runs counter-clockwise, because the artist is always bucking the norm.

Creative Journey

I like this four-part structure for autobiographical pieces, but your story is yours to tell. Write it however you see fit. These quotes and questions still may help you:

Part 1: Set the Scene (Inspiration, The Call)

 All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up. ~Pablo Picasso

Is there a time in childhood when you knew you were an artist? Who were your imaginary friends? What did you read? Who influenced you or believed in your talent? (For an example, check out the beginning of this piece on Freya Stark.)

Part 2: The Problem (Tests, Trials, and Ordeals)

The right way to wholeness is made up of fateful detours and wrong turnings. ~Carl Jung

What happened when you became an adult? Why didn’t you follow your inner artist? Did you burn out? Did you take a side path? Why? Did a “fateful detour” help you later?

Part 3: The Solution (Epiphany, Breakthrough)

Genius is the power for lighting your own fire. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

How did you get back to your dream? Did you experience the dark night of the soul and/or an epiphany? Did you become a walker between the worlds?

Part 4: The Resolution (The Gift)

I shall go on. ~Leonard Da Vinci’s last notebook entry

What have you created/are you creating? What does it means to you? Where do you hope it leads you? Does it harken back to Part 1? What one piece of advice would you give other Later Bloomers about persevering on their creative journey?

But again, it’s your story. I look forward to hearing from you!