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A Creative & Brief History of BeMoreCreative.com
I’m Frank, the creator and webmaster for BeMoreCreative.com. I’d like to briefly explain how this website, and all the websites in the bemorecreative.com family, evolved from my personal interest in quotations.
My wife and I began our married life working for seven years as volunteers in Zaire (now DR Congo) with Mennonite Central Committee – she as a nurse and I, first as a teacher, and later as a public health manager. By 1981 I had completed a Masters in Tropical Diseases at Johns Hopkins and a Doctorate in International Health at Tulane Universities. I was then hired by USAID to manage a large health-systems development project based in Kinshasa. The SANRU Basic Rural Health project which I helped to manage developed 100 decentralized health zones to provide primary health care for more than 10,000,000 people. That is, however, another story told better at http://SANRU.org.
In 1986 I wanted to make a calendar Christmas gift for my wife using Print Shop and my trusty Apple //GS computer. I decided to make a weekly calendar with a motherly/homey quotation at the top of each page. Browsing through a copy of The Shorter Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, I found the quotes that I was looking for, but, in the process, also became hooked on quotations about creativity. I began collecting quotations relating to creativity and soon had enough to make a page-a-day calendar featuring creative-related quotations.
Within the following months I amassed several thousand quotations, and began reading more about the creative process. I was intrigued by books like “A Whack on the Side of The Head: How to Unlock Your Mind for Innovation” by Roger Von Oech. However, it was in reading his sequel, “A Kick in the Seat of the Pants,” that I made a creative connection that my collection of quotations could be used to illustrate components of the creativity process. After more research, including “Pathfinders” by Gail Sheehy I ended up adopting a five-step creative process, called Creative Quotations, -- Foraging, Reflecting, Adopting, Nurturing, and Knuckling Down. Those five terms, while admittedly a bit out of the ordinary, spell out the word “FRANK,” and become my way of personalizing the creative process.
I credit my ten years of "survival" as a project manager in Africa in part to this personalization of the creative process, and its application to creative project management. I also found that I could logically link almost any of my collected quotations with one of those five components. I also found that given a dozen or so quotations from a famous person that I could usually create a meaningful set of Creative Quotations by that person which illustrated, directly or indirectly, their thoughts on the creative process – from “Foraging” to “Knuckling Down,” e.g., Creative Quotations from Abraham Lincoln.
Creative Quotations from Abraham Lincoln
In 1991 our family was evacuated from Zaire due to political and economic instability. At that time I began working as a freelance consultant in International Health. I also began looking for opportunities to share Creative Quotations to a larger audience that might appreciate insights from famous creative people -- “The wisdom of the wise and the experience of the ages may be preserved in quotations. (Isaac D'Israeli). CreativeQuotations.com came to be as a result of that effort, and is intended to challenge people readers to think creatively by looking for connections between quotations and the creative process -- “Creativity is the power to connect the seemingly unconnected (William Plomer).
The Internet has provided me with the medium to not only share my quotation collection as “CreativeQuotations.com”, but also to expand to a broader platform of “BeMoreCreative.com.” That eventually led to numerous other Creative Quotational websites. I’ve thematically combined quotations on a selected topic with online links to products related to that topic. The CreativeHardwareStore.com, for example, was inspired by the quotation that “Anyone can look for history in a museum. The creative explorer looks for history in a hardware store” --Robert Wieder.
I invite you to browse any and all the BeMoreCreative.com websites while “thinking, working and living more creatively.” And keep on the lookout for connections along the way that may inspire your personal creativity!