How Hans van Rompaey creates space to write

Happyplaces Stories (video)

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‘It is important not to be too eager. Listen only to yourself when creating something. Because that is what got you here in the first place. When you let this go, things go wrong. This happens a lot. It often happens that people who make concessions because they are too eager forget why they started it in the first place.’

Meet Hans, or Ivo. I think I met Hans in 2003, as the lead singer of the Belgian band Kamino. Kamino performed as Texelse Boys, a project I was running back then, playing songs from the Manchester scene for the movie release parties of Michael Winterbottom’s 24 Hour Party People. After one of those gigs, we met. Where I learned that Hans, was not only Kamino, but also project manager at the Lowlands Festival. The Lowlands Festival is the biggest music & arts festival of the Benelux, a 3-day camping event, taking place in the 3rd weekend of August and entertaining +55.000 people per festival day. Hans was in charge in charge of all external communication and publicity, brand development, sponsor activities and was overseeing all programming of the festival. Which eventually led to Texelse Boys Playground, our own festival within the Lowlands Festival. Amazing and fun times. A couple of years later, Hans changed course. From music to writing.

Hans, or Ivo, in his writing office in Amsterdam.
‘Of course, there are always some practical objections to your dreams and desires. The most important one being money. You need money to create things that are not profitable. Which was the case when I had just started writing. This is when my training in creating space in order to write began.’

A short story that he wrote got the attention of multiple publishers. Next to Hans, there was already Ivo Victoria, his pseudonym, which he used to write on his blog. But this short story ignited the inner Ivo within Hans. To create space to write, he quit his job. His website featured 5 suitcases, all representing a certain value that added up were the sufficient amount of money to be able to pay for all the necessary life things — so there would be space to write. Hans really engineered his pathway to facilitate his goal. His story is a great inspiration for people that live with unfilled dreams, who are afraid to go for it to make it happen.