Create vs Copy
by Ken Wytsma
Moody Publishers, Hardbound
187 pages, 2016
College professor Ken Wytsma’s nonfiction book Create vs Copy argues that being creative in the workplace is not only possible, it is natural and beneficial for the worker and the business. In the process he takes the common belief that only a few people are creative and smashes it apart. What does Wytsma use as his hammer? He uses solid theology backed by dozens of examples and practical ways to implement creativity.
What does Wytsma suggest to help stir up creativity? A few examples include: take a walk outside, brainstorm with a group, doodle or write down incomplete ideas, and use change to stimulate new perspectives. The book has many specific tips and ideas on how to put creativity to good use at work, in the church, at home or in community activities. These tips are what make Wystma’s theories practical for the everyday person. His creative role models include Thomas Edison, Marie Curie, the Wright Brothers, and Margaret Thatcher. His biblical heroes range from Solomon to the Apostle Paul, and, naturally, Jesus.
Whereas his theological lessons do work in day-to-day life, Create vs Copy can get slightly overextended at times as to the theology applications. Nevertheless, the short wide variety of examples, illustrations, and anecdotes mixed in throughout the book capture the reader’s attention the majority of the time. These stories include personal real life events, as well as references to movies, books, and history.
Aesthetically, Create vs Copy has quite a few pleasing elements. Thought-provoking black and white drawings, which are often used to illustrate concepts in the book, are woven throughout the text. Inside the chapters, the paragraphs are divided into sections with bold headings.
The book also includes study group questions and points to material that can be found on Wytsma’s website. These materials are found at the end of each of the eight chapters, and set the book up as potential material for personal or group studies.
The author makes it clear that people are naturally creative because God, a creative being, made them in his image. He also points to God’s creativity as a blueprint for how human creativity should and can work. Wytsma frequently refers to using creativity to revive churches, as well as businesses, and many of the anecdotes and illustrations he shares include activities by Christians. Ken Wytsma himself is a Christian, and God is deeply involved in much of his theology and theory.
Reviewer: Kayla Houvenagle is a professional writing major at Taylor University and a book reviewer for Church Libraries and The Waynedale News.