Who are you and what do you do?
I’m a scriptwriter, an author and I teach live and online writing and creativity workshops. My books include [amazon_link id=”1857883675″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Your Writing Coach[/amazon_link], [amazon_link id=”1857885783″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Your Creative Writing Masterclass[/amazon_link], and Creativity Now.
The goal of my work is not only to express my own creativity, but to encourage others to do the same. Far too many people believe they’re not creative. The education system and perhaps well-meaning parents and other adults convinced people the best way to get through life is to shut down your curiosity, learn and abide by the rules and consume rather than strive to contribute.
I hope to wake people up from that trance and to encourage them to share their stories, their ideas and their feelings in whatever medium appeals to them: fiction, non-fiction, the arts or through paid or volunteer work. My particular emphasis is helping people write what only they can write.
How do you bring ideas to life?
One format is the Massive Action Day. The point is to give people a way to focus on one of their goals for a day with support, encouragement and minimal distractions. This can give them the momentum to keep moving forward.
On that day, usually a Saturday once a month, I set up a website where participants can post their goals, check in hourly to report (in a chat window) how they did in the past hour and post their goal for the next hour. They can also ask questions and get help from me and other participants.
At the start of every hour, I do a live video broadcast for about 5 minutes to answer questions and give tips on time management, being creative and writing. I do this for 16 hours so people in most time zones can take part. I spring some surprises on the participants, including giving away prizes, to keep the mood positive and fun.
I charge a token fee to cover the costs of the video stream; mostly it’s a way of connecting with people and providing them with a resource they might not find otherwise. If anyone wants details, feel free to email me at [email protected].
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
[amazon_link id=”0142001104″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]The Art of Possibility [/amazon_link]by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander. It’s a wonderfully positive approach to cultivating your creativity. It combines Benjamin Zander’s experience as an orchestral conductor and teacher with Rosamund Stone Zander’s experience as a psychotherapist. If you ever feel like you’ve lost touch with your own possibilities, this book is a powerful tonic.
What is one piece of advice that you’d like to give?
I know it has become something of a cliché, but I think it’s a powerful principle: “If you keep on doing what you’re doing, you’ll keep on getting what you’re getting. If you want to get something different, do something different.”
What is one idea that you’re going to bring to life in 2012?
I will develop a transmedia project that combines the important principles of personal change with a thriller/mystery game that will unfold both online and in live events. My goal is to create an experience that is fun, entertaining, helps participants to understand themselves better and helps them make changes if they want to.