Your' best creative ideas

There's no shortcut, the good ones come when they want to. Sometimes the good idea is just to set a pace and not wait for good ideas. You gain some momentum and ideas form along the way.

If there is one real trick, it's not so much a trick at all, it's science. First, you need to establish a baseline. Think of 100 ideas. Think of so many ideas that you become bored with them, to where they all blur together in their nondescript averageness. Now do that again. You are calibrated. Now every dumb thing you think of doesn't burst with dopamine from the sheer accomplishment of creating something that works. Stage 1 complete.

Now that you are jaded, keep thinking of ideas, every day. One day, you'll think of an idea and say, "this one feels special". You'll start working on it, and discover that it was good, but better in theory than practice. You still like the idea, but are mature enough to throw it away because it doesn't work well from all angles. Stage 2 complete.

A year later, you think of another good idea, you don't get quite as excited about it as the one from a year ago, but when you put this idea through the paces, it really starts to work. In fact, it's actually getting traction faster than the idea you were more excited about. As you write the chapters, the characters take on a life of their own, you are reading your own book, writing that next chapter because you want to find out what happens next.

That one, that's the good creative idea.

Same for music, same for film. Get past your own dopamine distortion, then put in the work to field test. That alone will improve your culling process. Spend 1000 hours on a project and realize it's a failure , and you'll remember that pain and select your next big idea more carefully, and with more experience and context. After gaining some experience, you'll find that you start getting a lot more ideas that actually work out in practice.
 
My best creative ideas just come. It's when I try to refine them later that things get screwed up. Probably because of second guessing.

I don't think true creativity can be forced or conjured or simulated with tricks. It's there or it isn't. It's a rare thing, true creativity. The ability to create something new and not contrived.

I believe the greatest destroyer of the creative potential a person might have is the desire to please. It causes you to homogenize your ideas so the maximum number of people will like them. In a lot of ways, it takes courage to be creative since true creativity exposes who you really are. It opens you up to criticism when you're at your most vulnerable.

I don't know if I am a creative person or not but there are a couple of people I know who are.. Several times while marveling at their work I asked "How did you think to do that? Where did it come from?" Each of them gave nearly the same answer each time: "I don't know."
 
Last edited:
Thomas Edison
 
Fevers seem to unlock creativity in me. The kind of fevers you get when you have a cold/flu. I do not try to get sick to spur creativity, but when I do catch a cold, I recognize it's a good opportunity to get to something creative. Of course, I'm hampered by the symptoms that come with a cold, but writing is doable. I tried a couple of years ago to replicate a fever by heating my body up with a heater and hot shower. It didn't work.
 
Also...for me listening to music can bring up movie ideas.


Listening to this triggers a lot of 80's nostalgia...


Listening to this brings me to the surreal.


I love this song when I'm on the road, one day I want to use this for something....

Also...watching lots of movies. Watching a lot of movies helps spark my own creative process.
 
Fevers seem to unlock creativity in me. The kind of fevers you get when you have a cold/flu. I do not try to get sick to spur creativity, but when I do catch a cold, I recognize it's a good opportunity to get to something creative. Of course, I'm hampered by the symptoms that come with a cold, but writing is doable. I tried a couple of years ago to replicate a fever by heating my body up with a heater and hot shower. It didn't work.
That sounds like a good basis for a story.
 
Also...for me listening to music can bring up movie ideas.


Listening to this triggers a lot of 80's nostalgia...


Listening to this brings me to the surreal.


I love this song when I'm on the road, one day I want to use this for something....

Also...watching lots of movies. Watching a lot of movies helps spark my own creative process.

This really works for me also. I think music is probably the best day to day creative stimulant, because it puts you in different headspaces, I think the best thing about music and writing is that it helps keep an idea coherent, because whatever scene I'm imagining has to work with whatever music I'm listening to.

Sometimes it's good to listen to music with a lot of dramatic changes, like Stravinsky or other long form composers, and try to create plot or scene changes that match the emotional shifts within the music. I think that in a certain way, those guys were trying to write movies themselves, long before cameras. Symphonies often followed some of the same emotional patterns as films, and many artists like Igor were actually writing these as soundtracks for 100 minute live stage performances. Sometimes you can get a similar effect from a modern concept album.

I really liked that new track you posted last week on the listening thread, kind of unbelievable that it only had 8000 views. Ambient music can be good for creativity. I think predictable beats are the least creativity inducing, like four on the floor techno. The music needs some unpredictability and emotional dynamics. There are definitely exceptions though. I listen to Crystal Method a lot while composing higher intensity scenes. Mick Gordon's doom soundtrack certainly creates a unique and active mental atmosphere.
 
I have been having some really amazing dreams lately so it inspired me to find an audio book to master (or try to) Lucid Dreaming -

A Beginner's Guide to Lucid Dreaming: How to Explore the Lucid Dream World and Master Oneironautics​


Anyone use Lucid dreams in/for their writing?
 
Damn not me. I dreamed that Homelander punched my head off :(
I observe Anthony Starr with some suspicion. Nobody's that good of an actor. I'm convinced that he is evil in real life. I imagine him going home after a shoot and donating money to a super pac, or collecting money for the SGKF. If I caught Anthony Starr on an airport runway putting sugar into the fuel line of a passenger jet, I would just say " I knew it".
 
No, but yesterday I was working on a scene that involved a shoot out. Then last night, I had a dream that I was watching my husband take out a few bad guys in a shoot out (I was an incompetent shooter, like several of my characters!). I'm not quite sure what to make of that :)
I still have no idea what dreams mean. I once dreamed that Christopher Walken was covered in feathers. How am I supposed to interpret that?
 
I have been having some really amazing dreams lately so it inspired me to find an audio book to master (or try to) Lucid Dreaming -

A Beginner's Guide to Lucid Dreaming: How to Explore the Lucid Dream World and Master Oneironautics​


Anyone use Lucid dreams in/for their writing?
If you can get into a lucid dream state, and then retain memory of the dream, it's actually quite useful. You can game out scenarios at will in an interactive mental world. The problem is that I've never been able to lucid dream at will. I've read some of the books, but basically it just happens once in a while when my mind becomes suspicious of incongruities within the dream. If I become lucid during a dream, it's a free for all, trying out as many ideas as possible until something wakes me up.
 
Here's something from my current R&D work that's relevant. As everyone already knows, I work a lot with visual AI dev, studying the mathematical process by which visual ideas are formed. Recently, I've been working with a new AI, for use in the Maerd Demo, that does a pretty good job of showing the creative process inside a mind on screen. While I've only been working with the new code for a week or so, and haven't finished any pieces of my own, here is an amazing demonstration of what it looks like as ideas form inside the mind of a machine (not from SP)

This is probably as close as you're going to get to being able to see ideas forming inside a brain,




 
Last edited:
I think music is probably the best day to day creative stimulant, because it puts you in different headspaces, I think the best thing about music and writing is that it helps keep an idea coherent.....

I could not agree more....much of the time I'm logged into IT, I'm actually listening to music from the videos posted here.....but not to the videos themselves, but to the extra music videos attached to them when you end the videos before they're done.....then at the bottom of the video it gives me a variety of music videos to watch and listen to....hence more story ideas.
 
Last edited:
I think I'll start an instrumental creativity playlist thread. Makes sense. Obviously a ton of great vocal music out there, but the lyrics tend to bend your ideas, so I typically listen to instrumental stuff for brainstorming. That way I can keep the original train of thought more intact.
 
Music is also the key for me, along with lots and lots of research on a topic.

I also love creating mood boards on Pinterest for every project idea.

Every piece of the theme blasting my senses until I generate a story.
 
Top