What Lady Gaga Taught Me About Writing, or How To Write A Bad Romance

Confession time: I love Lady Gaga.

I can’t get enough of her creativity and infectious music, and to be honest I think she’s a total genius. Yesterday I caught an interview with her on Fuse and while I was totally enamored by every word she said, my husband was just confused.

“How is she genius?” he asked me.

“Are you kidding? LOOK at her!” I told him, disgusted that he couldn’t appreciate her freakish awesomeness.

“Is she crazy or something?” he asked. He was tinkering with his Droid during this conversation, so I was even more bothered that he wasn’t really absorbing Gaga’s message.

 

But I’ll be honest– I get his confusion. Lady Gaga isn’t “normal” (whatever normal even is.) But what makes her so brilliant is that her songs have depth to them. She writes her own music the way any other artist approaches his or her art: with the understanding that there is more being said or relayed than what is immediately presented. When I write a short story, I know that I’m really saying more than the page explicitly states, but that’s up to you to interpret. Poets, painters, songwriters, musicians– it’s all the same. When creating something, the artist both consciously and unconsciously adds layers of depth and meaning.  This is why Gaga is so brilliant! She can sit there and tell how each song is created, envisioned, born, revised and in addition to that, she can tell you what her songs are saying besides the obvious.

 

I love her.

 

I also love this quote. This is what she has taught me about writing:

“When you make music or write or create, it’s really your job to have mind-blowing, irresponsible, condomless sex with whatever idea it is you’re writing about at the time.”

Yes! She gets it. She’s saying that whatever you’re writing (or painting or whatever-ing) about, whatever that idea is, you need to get down and dirty with it. You have to find its potential in the ugly places, because that is really what makes art good. And when you get this close and this involved with your idea, you become connected to it in a way that prevents you from walking away until it’s fully realized and until it breathes all on its own.

 

So, Lady Gaga has taught me that as I go forward on this writing venture of mine (since I can’t not write), I have to take my ideas and get close to them, mess around with them and give them the opportunity to be incredible and also heartbreaking. That is where art lives, don’t you think?

 

I love Gaga. Seriously.

 

Here’s the first part of her interview on Fuse where the above quote is mentioned and where she talks about creativity and her process a bit. She’s fascinating, no?

 

What is your take on creativity and inspiration in your writing or your art form? Do you think Gaga is on the money, or just a nut?

9 thoughts on “What Lady Gaga Taught Me About Writing, or How To Write A Bad Romance”

  1. I think GaGa is nuts. But I enjoy nutty people. In fact, I enjoy anybody who stops trying to think outside of the box, just throws the friggin box away and does something new. Creative people make the world go round.

    PS-That is the best quote on earth. I’m having it tattooed on my butt right after lunch!

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    1. She does throw the friggin box away, you’re right! Actually, I think she turned the box into an awesomely bizarre headpiece. Either way, she is a bit of a nut and I love that about her. She flies that freak flag high and proud, and nothing anyone says could make her stop. If only we were all that free in who we really are!

      I also want to tattoo that quote on my butt, but I may do it after dinner😉

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  2. I love Lady Gaga too — I about wore out her CD this summer while driving around (which seems to inspire my brain). I think that’s a great quote. We can be afraid to go where the idea is taking us sometimes, so it’s nice to hear that it’s part of the process. Thanks for sharing this!

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    1. Thanks for the comment, Donna! I agree with you– the scariest place we can go with an idea is the place where it feels the most painful or difficult, but that’s sometimes where we need to go. I had an amazing writing teacher (Rachel Kadish) who told us once that when you notice in a story that you’re just starting to touch on something sensitive and then you turn away from it and say “No, no– that isn’t my point. This other, less scary thing is my point.” then that is precisely the place to go back to and WRITE from. I think art is better when it walks head first into those difficult places.

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  3. Kristin, I am intrigued by Lady Gaga. I find her fascinating. But your article reminded me of my complete and total infatuation (I’m going to be his next wife) with Eminem. I think not only is he HOT, but he is a lyrical genius. The way he uses words, feels and breathes them, and the way he can paint such a visual (talking about watching a love leave through the window, “I guess that’s why they call it window pane,”) is awe-inspiring.

    So, I totally get your article!

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  4. I love your love for Lady Gaga! I’m neutral on her (love some of her music, couldn’t care less about some songs) but I completely agree with the passion in her quote and your amplification of it in this post. Sometimes we get so tired with life that we forget the importance of passion and zest and giving oneself completely. And recapturing that *is* genius.

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    1. Thanks for your comment, Julia! There are definitely moments in life where we just go through the motions. I think that’s normal. But remembering to infuse life with passion can really help, especially in creative processes. I think you need to get so intimate and reckless with your ideas that you know them inside and out so you can make them absolutely amazing. Gotta know their ugly sides, their strong points, what makes them tick,etc. That’s my takeaway from Gaga🙂

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