Five fears that cripple creativity


First you jump off the cliff then you scream ARRRGGGGHHHHHH FUUUUUUUCK I AM GOING TO DIE. Then you desperately improvise something like wings and take flight. That’s how it’s going to feel, every time. Learn to love it.


When I was really small a teacher at school made us dip our feet in paint and make foot prints. I wouldn’t do it and started crying. Making art is messy. Creating anything is messy. You’re going to get covered in paint, and so is your life.


“Have I read anything you’ve published?” “Would I have heard of you?” “How nice, and what do you do for a living?” “Oh yes I paint too!” “My wife reads books.” The easy answer is to just stop going to dinner parties. Again, this a net benefit.

Read five excellent guides to the craft of writing.


You’re literally going to starve to death if you don’t spend every single moment of your life working in a job you hate. Read that again. Does it sound silly yet? Keep reading it until it does. And then stop thinking it.


Because if you make it, things will change. You’ll might move house, make new friends, work a new. And even when part of us is hungry for change, another part fears it deeply.

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Published by Damien Walter

Writer and storyteller. Contributor to The Guardian, Independent, BBC, Wired, Buzzfeed and Aeon magazine. Special forces librarian (retired). Teaches the Rhetoric of Story to over 35,000 students worldwide.

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