Creative Writing On Demand

By Tony Vengrove

Boisterous Children

I recently had the pleasure of visiting downtown Lancaster, Pennsylvania during the holiday break. This small city is worth getting to know. There is a great group of citizens, brimming with creative energy and passion, working hard to create a more vibrant community and economy.

During my walk, I rounded a corner and discovered the city’s creative energy on full display: I met Abigail Mott, a poet. She sat quietly by the edge of the street on a small chair in front of a folding table with a beautiful antique typewriter resting upon it. A paper sign, secured only by the weight of the typewriter, hung over the front edge of the table. It read, “Pick a Subject, Get a Poem.”

I was intrigued. I made a beeline and inquired about her story.

Abigail grew up in Lancaster and currently lives in Colorado. She was back home visiting for the holidays and set up shop just outside the busy Lancaster Market to engage the community with her poetry on-demand project.

I love stuff like this and immediately requested a poem. My topic: boisterous children. (I have three kids, two of which are 3-year-old twin toddlers.) She told me it takes about ten minutes to compose a poem.

Abigail inserted a small piece of typewriter paper into her machine. The paper itself was special–a beautiful cream color with a delicate quilt texture. She immediately began to type. There was no moment of deep contemplative thought or writer’s block; she dove right in. Click, click, click.Abigail Typing

I stepped away to give her some space. When she reached for her camera phone to snap a picture of her work I knew it was time to return. As I approached the table, the rest of my family, including my three kids, had caught up to me, just in time to hear Abigail read the poem herself.

I love it all. I love the poem. I love the simplicity of what she is doing. It’s brilliant.

It’s also a great reminder on this first Monday of 2016 that we’re all empowered to utilize our creative gifts and that we possess everything we need to start now. There’s no excuse to stall or complain about a lack of resources. Grab a simple pencil and paper (or an old typewriter), let go of that inner judge, and dive right in!

If you’re intrigued with Abigail’s work, be sure to check out her Tumblr and follow her on Twitter.

Wishing you all a very creative and innovative 2016. Happy New Year!

Founder, Miles Finch Innovation LLC

Miles Finch Innovation helps companies navigate the messy territory of corporate innovation. We’re strategic thinking partners who can help you get unstuck and identify creative solutions to your toughest challenges. We also love to train and speak on the subject of Creative Leadership. Email us or call us at 860-799-7505 to learn how we can help you you unlock the creative potential of your employees.


By Anthony Vengrove

Photo Credit: Sidewalk Revolution

Photo Credit: Sidewalk Revolution

Dear Idea,

I’m coming for you

The wait is over

This is a call-to-arms


Today you cease to be a story in my head

A mental concept

Today is the day you will be birthed into the world

No more hoping for a natural delivery, I’ve scheduled a c-section

A creativity-section, so to speak


Today I start

By starting I become stronger for trying

By trying I immediately separate myself from the masses

Who remain stuck in intention

Who unconsciously find comfort in the status quo

It is easier to dream than to start


Starting is only a beginning

A journey

But starting leads to learning

From learning to insight

To better ways


Starting is better than complaining

Or worrying

Starting is cathartic

For engagement fuels inspiration


No more excuses and why-nots

Enough baby steps

And fear of imperfection

Of not being good enough

My good enough is better than most


I will silence my ego which describes you as both brilliant and far-fetched

I will become present

I will bask in the glory of creation

I will honor you by gifting my full attention

For you deserve mindfulness


I’m tired of seeing others recognized for ideas I had years ago

I’m tired of seeing others creep toward the fringes of my dreams

Back off


No more will I let my cans turn into should-haves

Of course, I can!

I can do anything once I believe

For we live in an age where nearly anything is possible

A dream only requires a computer connected to the world


So you see, Idea

There’s no security staying trapped in my head

Only to become a faded memory

Stagnation’s step

On the stairway of death


No longer will I dread other’s judgment and criticism

Fear shall transmogrify into treasure

So bring it


If this sounds like war

It is


I’m climbing to the top of the mountain

To stake the flag of achievement upon its peak

I may get lost on the way up

I may back-track to find a better path forward

But I’m not coming down

I’d rather die trying than retreat


I commit to you a spirit of desperation

Of having no other option than to succeed

I dare to fail


Intoxicated by ambition

A cacophony of thoughts

A caustic nougat of emotions

All created by you, Idea


Oh, the glory of clarity!

Starting is the only way

I can