Fish and Cherries Productions

Creative content from a mad mind.


What’s On My Mind on 7-20-16

With San Diego Comic Con only a day away, I thought I’d give something to all the aspiring creatives that follow me. Aside from all the costumes, celebrities, and previews, Comic Con is a place where people looking to break into the creative world can learn about the trade from professionals. In honor of all of the ones who taught me, I want to pass something down that I’ve put together.

So you want to be a writer. That’s good, admirable even. The creative bug should spread as far as possible. However, there are a few big obstacles in your way, namely that being self-regulated is one of the hardest things to do. It’s easy to work for someone else, but working for yourself is a-whole-nother beast to conquer. Now, I may not be an expert on the subject, but after a few years of working for myself as a writer, I feel like I’ve obtained some wisdom when it comes to being self-regulated. Here’s three tips on how to be your own good boss when writing creatively.

#1: Beware of JOM

JOM is a nasty fellow who hangs over the shoulder of every aspiring writer. Nobody knows him by name, but everyone’s met JOM. Perhaps even you non-writers have met JOM too. To be sure, let me call JOM by his/her true name:


Just one more webpage of random facts before I get back to work. Just one more level or quest in this really engrossing video game. Just one more chapter of the book or comic I just bought. But that’s the thing about JOM: he/she keeps coming back. That webpage may link to another, more intriguing one or the next chapter could be a resolution to a great cliffhanger. Suddenly, just one more has become several more and that deadline is looking tighter and tighter.

So to stave off JOM, you should take heed of the next piece of advice…

#2: Time Your Breaks (And Be Sure To Take Breaks)

The reason our minds wander to other things while we write is that, like any muscle, it gets tired after prolonged use. Imagine if you lifted 100 pounds for eight hours straight. The muscles in your arms would be completely destroyed! It is omni-important that your mind be allowed to rest, even if this is your future magnum opus.

That said, you should be mindful of how long your breaks are. Newton’s first law of motion says that a body at rest tends to stay at rest; the brain is no different. This isn’t helped by JOM constantly butting in to distract you. The best way to get around this is to set alarms for when your break is supposed to end, letting you know when to get back to work. Nothing quite jolts the senses like an alarm bell.

#3: Don’t Force It — It’s Okay To Take a Day

Sometimes the writing just doesn’t come. Maybe the muse isn’t talking to you or you’re dealing with some problems weighing on your mind. Whatever the reason, you just can’t seem to write.

And that’s perfectly fine.

If the stories aren’t coming, even after some exercises and walks, there’s nothing to be done. Creativity can’t be forced any more than water can be squeezed out of a rock. Sometimes the river’s just dry. There’s nothing wrong with that, though; sometimes ideas need to percolate in the back of your mind before inspiration strikes you for the next part of the project. Now deadlines can make this step complicated, but necessity is the mother of invention and there’s no bigger motivator for that than last minute panic.

There is most assuredly more to this than just these three steps, but the the very least they’ll be a great foundation to build your path to the literary world. Take your first steps. Learn your own valuable lessons to keep you on track. But most importantly of all, never stop imagining and creating.

That’s all for now. For all those going to Comic Con this weekend, have a great time and I hope to see you there.


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