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The Intertia of Entropy

One of my favorite authors, William Gibson said in a recent interview, "I grew up with the idea that most of the environment we actually inhabit is the result of human labor. Anyone who can make something really well, more or less from scratch, has my respect."

And this put a thumb on, or at least, came rather close to putting a thumb on, a feeling I have when I'm trying to make something. It's harder than you'd think to take nothing but a thought, and make it a real thing, no matter how simple. There's this static that occurs in between a firm image of what the thing you want to make is, and then plucking it out of the ether and making it real. I firmly believe that this "static" is in fact, entropy - the tendency of all things to become less organized and have less energy. Time is an arrow which points in only one direction - and that direction is the way which leads to ever greater entropy. So when we as makers, as creators, as humans - make something out of nothing, we are fighting the entropic nature of the universe. We're plucking some little pocket of energy out of the heat death of all things everywhere, and pushing back that deadline (ha ha) just a little.

I like making things. Sometimes I have to psych myself up to get from that state where I'm imagining a thing, and that state where I am actually making a thing. Whether it's making something out of leather, or brewing beer or cider, a shell script, or writing a story or a screenplay - whatever it is, I do have this tendency to just get intimidated once I get to the point where I'm going to gather my materials and get started. Like a good run, it's easy to keep going once I've taken that first step - but inertia does its best to keep my ass planted on the couch, and the idea in my head rather than in the world.

But fuck entropy. I want to make stuff. What do you do to take that first step? What gets you wrestling with one of the primal forces of the universe - and winning?


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:39 pm (UTC)
An empty workspace waiting to be filled up by a project.
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:44 pm (UTC)
You are the most an-entropic person I know.
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:50 pm (UTC)
Isn't that why you married me? To fight entropy?
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:53 pm (UTC)
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:57 pm (UTC)
Somehow I doubt that's the effect.
Sep. 1st, 2011 09:32 pm (UTC)
I know exactly how you feel - today is my only day to get crafty before game though, so I have to give entropy a swift kick in the nuts.

Sep. 1st, 2011 09:34 pm (UTC)
Yeah, me too. Ironically, partly on your behalf. :)
Sep. 2nd, 2011 06:33 am (UTC)
And lo, it was awesome.

Sep. 2nd, 2011 04:20 am (UTC)
Nothing gets me ready to do things like upbeat, peppy music. The genre of the music depends on the activity!
Sep. 6th, 2011 02:16 am (UTC)
A deadline gets me going. Wish it wasn't so, but that's the greatest motivator I have between thinking of something and making something.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )


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