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J4London

@J4London

How to stay creative and write unique content?

As a screenwriter, I'm constantly confronted with finding new ways of telling old stories. Also, dealing with people who want to change your material because they can.

    1. ARGUE WITH YOURSELF

    Regularly identify the things you're sure of and try to prove why they are wrong.

    2. TAKE SOMEBODY YOU DISLIKE TO LUNCH

    If you find yourself getting irritated, ask yourself why. Then ask yourself whether these are actually the qualities you dislike in yourself. Overcoming those also opens up new ways of thinking.

    3. ASK LITTLE KIDS

    Their answers probably won't give you any practical solutions, but their fresh way of thinking can stir some ideas in your thinking.

    4. BE SOMEBODY ELSE

    How would a clown see the problem? A wizard? A caveperson? A genius? A robot? Keep going until you get enough insights to approach the issue from a fresh direction.

    5. ASK AN OLD PERSON

    Don't pick an old person trying hard to be down with the kids; find one who knows how things used to be done and see whether anything has been lost along the way that could be revived in a new form.

    6. ASK, "WHO CARES?"

    Talk to the people most directly affected by the issue, then talk to people who couldn't care less. Often the former have unique insights because they care so much and the latter have unique insights because they don't care at all.

    7. ADD AND SUBTRACT

    What could you add to the situation or product to improve it? What could you take away that would improve it?

    8. DO SOMETHING THAT SCARES YOU

    One way to clear your mind and return to an issue with a different perspective is to do something that scares you a little--maybe taking on a climbing wall, or signing up for a 10K run, or spending an entire weekend with your in-laws. You'll forget to be obsessed with the problem; if you survive, you'll return to it with a fresh mind.

    9. WRITE A BAD SONG OR PAINT A BAD PICTURE OF THE ISSUE

    You're allowed to write a good song or paint a good picture, too, of course, but don't let the lack of talent stop you from putting the issue into visual terms in order to experience it differently.

    10. GIVE UP!

    You can't win them all. Use your precious time to move on to something that you CAN solve.

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