Emotion researchers have found that negative mood may either enhance or inhibit employee creativity. Little is known about this conundrum, however, and in particular when and why each effect occurs. To address this concern, we formulate and test hypotheses about likely moderators of the relationship between negative mood and creative process engagement. Results from an experience sampling study with 556 real-time reports from 68 employees support our hypothesis that negative mood is most strongly and positively related to concurrent creative process engagement among employees who (a) have high trait learning goal orientation and (b) perceive that they are empowered. Our hypotheses and findings help to resolve the ongoing controversy surrounding the nature of the negative mood–creativity nexus.