Theodore Roosevelt said it best, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” What do you have to gain from comparing yourself or your writing to others? Comparison often only leads to thoughts of “well, I’m not this” or “I’m not that,” and that sort of negative focus is death for your creativity. If you’re too busy trying to be like others, then you’re not letting your creativity flourish; you’re trying to get it to conform to something. Isn’t your work unique? Then why get caught up comparing it to others. It shouldn’t be comparable.
Over Analyzing or Nitpicking
When you’re writing a first draft, you need to just write it. Don’t get caught up in what you’re doing or if something isn’t working or not. Overanalyzing is going to bring your creativity to a grinding halt. You will take time to analyze or change things after the first draft is written, so leave it alone for now. Over analyzing while writing will make finishing more difficult, and you can’t better an unfinished work.
Sometimes perfectionism can creep in on me and make me feel frozen like I can’t create anything because nothing I create will ever be perfect. When you find yourself feeling like that, you need to shut that down fast! Nothing in this world is perfect! Imperfections are what make us human and keep things interesting. It’s what makes stories interesting. The imperfect should be celebrated, not condemned. Perfectionism is a sure-fire way to cripple your creativity. You need to remember that nothing is flawless, and things can always be improved through rewriting! SoCreate has interviewed award-winning writers who look back on their New York Times Bestsellers and say there are things even they would change.
Don’t get me wrong; understanding rules and conventions when writing (especially when screenwriting) is essential. It’s important to know the rules so you can use them to your advantage and bend or subvert them when it suits you. Being a rigid stickler about the rules can take the art out of storytelling and leave you uninspired and your work unoriginal. Let the rules guide and work for you. When they stop working for you or box you in, play with them, or throw them out!
Doing something you’re not “all in” on
We all have to do things that we don’t love or aren’t thrilled about. That’s life. When it comes to being a storyteller and choosing what story you want to tell, you shouldn’t pick something just because you think others will like or respond to it. It would be best if you were telling stories that resonate with you and your experiences. Working on stories that you’re passionate about will allow your creativity to thrive. Trying to chase a fad or tell a story just because you think a broad audience will like it or that it will sell will do nothing for your creativity if you’re not personally invested in it.
Kick these bad habits to the curb! You and your creativity deserve better than getting caught up in these creativity-killing pastimes. It’s crucial to recognize what holds you back and get rid of anything standing in your way. Happy writing, be kind to yourself, and let your creativity flow free!
Speaking of letting your creativity flow, have you signed up to be one of the first to try SoCreate Screenwriting Software? Get on the private beta list by clicking here. The software promises to make screenwriting fun again, remove the frustration of clunky formatting software, and help your creativity flourish!