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Creative thinking

Creative thinking

How to Fight "The Doubts"

Last month I received an email from a screenwriter client who, having received a “thanks but no thanks” letter, wanted to know what I tell myself to fight off the doubts that I'm not good enough - and stay focused on writing my story... It was such a great question and it really started me thinking - what exactly do I tell myself to fight off the doubts and keep going? Self-doubt affects just about every writer I know and I'm certainly no stranger to it. Being a writer means endlessly seeking validation and approval from the outside world. And sometimes we just don't get it. Cue the doubts aka the dark vortex of doubt aka the creeping fingers of dread aka the paralysing, grey corset of doom. So what do I tell myself to get the crazy under control? I tell myself to remember the achievements, successes, and praise. Remember that time you did good? "Doing good" can be anything from winning an award to impressing folks at your writing group with a killer first line or simply finishing your manuscript. ... Read the rest of entry »

The Tyranny of One Day Thinking

I’ve been trying to finish the next draft of a play and it’s been problematic. Not because it is so difficult that I can’t do it or even that I don’t want to finish it – it’s because I seem to think I have all the time in the world. I’ve always understood that my time on the planet is limited but bizarrely it hasn’t stopped me putting off my writing by making other things a priority. Until recently that is - when that false sense of eternity got well and truly smashed. I received upsetting news about a friend, quickly followed by a sad email about a work colleague and then even more crappy news about another friend. (Seriously, 2016 come on!) This sad cluster of news was a timely reminder that we don’t live forever. Our bodies and minds have a habit of breaking. I knew that and yet somehow I kinda forget. This is what’s so wrong with “one-day” thinking. There’s no guarantee that “one day“ will actually come. I think there's a tyranny to "one day" thinking - especially for writers and aspiring writers. ... Read the rest of entry »

9 Ways to Improve Your Story's Chance of Winning

 Having been on more than a few judging panels, I have a good idea how entries and applications look from the judges' perspective – and how entrants can thwart their chances of winning.

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Why Hitting The Beach Should Be Top of Your 2016 To-Do List

 Already making plans for 2016? Me too.

No matter how often I remind myself I’m on holiday the old grey matter keeps circling back to the tasks that lie ahead. Our lives are now so frantic and achievement focused I don’t think I’m alone in finding it difficult to truly “turn off” during our precious holidays.

Annoying? Hell, yes. Productive? Not really.

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  1. Re: The Most Effective Antidote for Productive Writing Ever?

    Thanks Fiona! Much appreciated. KB

    --Kathryn Burnett

  2. Re: The Most Effective Antidote for Productive Writing Ever?

    I've been writing for the whole of my children's lives. First my BA, then Masters, now Phd, and also...

    --fionakiwi

  3. Re: Can't Find Time to Write? Get Carving

    Of course you have to be focussed to write and having an end goal is a great help - Playa Flamenca

    --Playa FLamenca

  4. Re: Why Hitting The Beach Should Be Top of Your 2016 To-Do List

    I agree Kathryn. Goal setting is so important.

    --Toby

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