And Then We Grew Up: On Creativity, Potential, and the Imperfect Art of Adulthood

Rachel Friedman
Published in 2019
by Penguin Books

Rachel Friedman, author of The Good Girl’s Guide to Getting Lost: A Memoir of Three Continents, Two Friends, and One Unexpected Adventure, follows up with a memoir meets writer’s guidebook addressing the realities of an artist’s life. Friedman looks back to her childhood fantasies of being an artist and consults with former classmates from Interlochen Arts Camp, a prestigious summer music and arts camp she attended as an eleven-year-old in Michigan, to find out how their early creative ambitions translated into adult careers, relationships, and lifestyles. Featuring playful chapter titles such as “On ‘Making It,’” “Never Compromise! (But Definitely Compromise),” and “The Kingdom of Ordinary Time,” Friedman combines personal conversations with critical, practical advice on how to build a sustainable life as an artist, illustrating the many forms creativity can take. “We can broaden our notion of achievement—not in the Instagrammable, ‘look at me having it all’ sort of way,” writes Friedman. “This is not magical thinking. It’s simply embracing the whole range of experiences, not just the heightened or overly artistic ones. It’s being a curious, observant traveler in your own life.”