Floor Sample
by Julia Cameron

Penguin, 2006. ISBN 1585424943.
Reviewed by Judith Helburn
Posted on 07/22/2007

Nonfiction: Memoir; Nonfiction: Relationships

One would think that the author who gave us The Artist's Way would have her life together. She certainly helped me expand my creativity. It seems, however, that her writing and her creativity are her glue.

She writes candidly and openly of a difficult life from times as a child when she witnessed her own parents fall apart psychologically, through her own teen and young adult alcoholism into a whirlwind marriage with Martin Scorsese and being consumed by a wild Hollywood scene. What brought her to a mostly sane life was her child, her sobriety, her creativity and her writing.

Cameron's writing, even as a teen-ager has been finely honed and intelligent, in fact so fine that she was writing for The Washington Post, Rolling Stone and Playboy in her early twenties—while she was what she calls a "cup of soup" alcoholic. "Simply add alcohol to my system and I was an instant alcoholic."

She writes courageously of her difficulties throughout her life and how walking in nature, asking for help and writing her three page quota have always helped her through. Her three pages a day have led to twenty-two books, plays, poetry and even a feature film. Her philosophy became, "I am just supposed to be writing. Quality was up to God. I was in charge only of quantity." And, in her sobriety, it worked. She found that teaching and helping others unblock their creativity gave her great satisfaction and she did it well. In many instances, she sacrificed her own writing time and her own sense of integrity. Then, she would pull back and return to a position of balance.

Julia Cameron bares her soul and leads us through her personal labyrinth to a life of vision, a life that is often uncomfortable, and a life that is uniquely Cameron. One can not but hope that, as she continues her creative journey, she sends what comes from her soul and her pen to us so that we, too, may be enriched.

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