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Today’s technology provides innumerable new resources for hopeful writers, and one of the most powerful learning hubs is found in online video. When used appropriately, services like Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, and the countless other online video hubs provide some of the most powerful, thorough, and affordable learning centers for up-and-coming creative writers.
Are you finding that difficult to swallow whole? Consider this: Through sites like Netflix, we get a sense of the broad story arcs through “binge watching” opportunities, are able to filter for higher-quality content, browse in an environment that promotes experimentation, and access a discovery engine that helps introduce us to new work.
Happy National Grammar Day! (No, seriously. It’s a thing.)
This holiday is relatively new (circa 2008), and comes to you from a group of enthusiastic grammar nerds. Now, I may not be quite as deep into the “should” of language as many of the most passionate members of the grammarian community, but I do take pleasure in the elegance of a well-formed sentence. Grammar lets us communicate clearly and effectively—and, just as important, it gives us a set of rules that we can intentionally violate for effect.
I wanted to fill you in on some details of the day. The rest of this article will give you information on the holiday, a few of the nerdy happenings and opportunities available for you, and some of my favorite grammar-related videos.
This article has been moved to the Creative Writing Guild.
Dear Sir or Madam,
It has come to our attention that your Writer’s Motivation™ has been misplaced. We here at the Universe (along with its affiliates, subsidiaries, and partner companies), would like to apologize for any and all inconvenience this loss has caused you.
We’re on Day 3 of NaNo and I’m already behind! Shall we all gape for a moment in feigned surprise? The reality is, being behind doesn’t surprise me at all. It’s not that my creative juices aren’t flowing. It’s that I have classes, extracurricular stuff, a big test on Monday, freelance work to get moving on, and … you know, video games.
But my study of the psychology of creative writing, along with advice from experienced NaNite friends, has given me a few insights that I think will help me nail this first week—even with my late start. Are you in the same sticky position? Are you coming to NaNo late? Well, hopefully this plan will give you some useful next steps.
Like many creative types, I struggle with clinical depression. The trick here is that “clinical depression” often means “depression that we’ve tried to medicate.” Many writers, artists, and “non-creative” people struggle with undiagnosed depression, or at least depression that’s manageable enough that they haven’t yet taken a psychiatric route. In talking extensively on this topic with two of my close friends (both of whom are also writers and both of whom suffer from depression), it became apparent to me that this association is painfully common and that there may well be some practical explanations.
The word should really mean any act of creation, but we tend to mean something else when we talk about creativity. For most common uses of the term, creativity typically means an ability to come up with non-obvious ideas and see new connections. Imagination and creativity are intertwined in our conception; they are both ways of thinking between ideas rather than about them. In fact, a functional definition is that creativity is the ability to think expansively.
Much of the content I write isn’t posted on this blog. To give you the chance to see all the other work I’ve been doing, I wanted to create this post as an ongoing compilation of my off-site content. Here are a few items worth checking out:
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