Creativity Spotlight: Interview with Musician, Kim Ware
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So today, the awesome and talented musician, Kim Ware, stops by to talk about creativity. Kim is one of my old Atlanta music scene friends, and she actually played drums for me a couple of times. She’s a really sweet person and incredibly talented, and I’m so happy she took the time to stop by!
So, here you go, everyone. An interview with Kim Ware.
What is your main form of creative expression?
Songwriting (and here recently, I’m finding morning pages just about as essential)
Do you work as an artist/creative full-time or do you have a different day job?
I have a day job – I manage a team of digital strategists at a major web property.
How long have you been creating music/books/plays/films/etc.?
For as long as I can remember, really. But my formal training and performance started with the drums at age 12. So (dating myself) … over 30 years (wow!).
How do you find time to be creative if you have a separate day job?
I love talking about this! Because I’ve found it difficult to balance over the past couple of years but I think I’ve been able to get a good handle on it. And I really like helping other people figure that out. I mostly do music just on the weekends now, and it takes up most of my weekends. I recently did the math, and not including time for sleep and to eat, I think the average person with a 9-5 (without kids … I think that would skew it a bit because you do have someone else’s needs to account for in the time allotment) has about 20 hours over the weekend / on their days off to do with them whatever they please. That’s a lot!
So I’ve been trying to think of it as “wow I get to have all this time to spend on music if I want to” instead of “I have to spend 40 hours a week at work so I don’t get much time to spend on music.” Obviously, I have to sacrifice other things though. But because I’ve determined that writing and playing songs is something critical to my happiness, I prioritize it. I also get up early enough, during the week, that at a bare minimum I have time in the mornings for yoga, meditation, and morning pages. And that’s at a minimum. All of those things contribute to my songwriting and/or performance. If I’m able to get up at 6 rather than hitting snooze, I can usually find a few minutes to play guitar, too. So I guess it’s all about time management and prioritization, really. And being willing to sacrifice time spent on some other things.
Do you engage in any additional creative hobbies? Are there any you’d like to try?  
As I mentioned, the journaling / morning pages is something I started recently and really love it. I’d love to take an improv class, if that counts. And a poetry class. And every so often I also think about taking a pottery class … that’s all I can think of at the moment.
Who are some other artists and creatives that inspire you to create?
I find my friends super inspiring in so many ways. Their stories and their talents inspire me every day. Some of my favorite semi-well-known artists are John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats, Lucinda Williams, Liz Phair. For as long as I’ve been playing in bands, I was inspried by Superchunk and their Merge Records label. Was recently reminded of the poet Mary Oliver (RIP) and her beautiful work, so been diving back into her here recently.
Why do you create?
If you asked me that a few years ago I probably would have just said something like “because I love it, it’s fun!” And I do, and it is. So that still stands, but over the past year or so, I guess I’ve realized more and more that my songs are my most honest reflection of me. And I think putting something out in the universe that is honest and real is really important. So, now I’ll say I do it because it makes me think harder about who I really am — the hopes, dreams, scars, fears, all of it — and I hope it helps others, that care to listen, understand those parts of me a little better too.
What advice do you have for other creatives?
Prioritize it. If it’s really that important, treat it like it is. And if the primary thing drawing you to do it isn’t the sake of the creation part, then you’re probably never going to get much out of it.
What are you working on right now?
I’m about to start mixing the fifth Good Graces full-length recording. And writing the follow-up to it. Also been performing a good bit around Atlanta.
Where can people find you and your work? Also all the standard interweb places – Spotify, Facebook, etc. etc.
Thanks for letting me pick your brain, Kim! You are so right about your outlook on how much time you get to spend creating. And it’s so important to prioritize!