- Four ways to think about creative work. (1) What’s your purpose? What’s the explicit reason for why you want to do this and are willing to devote the time necessary to do this? (2) How do you build credibility? How do you fit your work within the established canon? How do you substantiate your work so that it is unshakeable? (3) What is the story you are trying to tell? And how does it resonate? (4) Who is the audience and how can we prepare your message so that those who are ready to hear it will be moved to listen to it and act. Each of these ways of thinking require a different focus and a different approach. The problem is that when we mix these up, it leads to writer’s block. Therefore, isolate each way and focus on it until you have reached a satisfactory point.
- Purpose. A lot of people are lackadaisical when it comes to thinking about the purpose of their ideas. This is in part due to a sense of politeness that stops us from asserting our purpose over the purpose of another person. So we need to train ourselves to engage in the iterative exercise that Peter Senge recommends: ask what’s my purpose? Then ask: if I achieved my purpose, what would that make possible? And if I achieved that further purpose, what would that make possible, etc.?