Coming up with an idea is always the hardest part of anything creative. Writing the story for Ever and writing the script for Cold War has opened my eyes to two things: How amazingly egotistical writing makes you and how amazingly

In chapter 4, I think I meant to take this opening this way:

Writing makes you egotistical because you either go the way of the ego or you abandon your project. The process works like this: You create something. Let's say you create a short novel.
  • First, you write the story. Obviously you like it and think it is original.
  • Four days later, you sorta don't really feel its original anymore, since you have known about it for a good four days already.
  • Perhaps you have told someone about your idea. They thought it was a good idea, except the would probably change this or that. Hrm. Flaws?
  • You start writing. A few pages in. Now I want this guy to say something cool. Maybe he'll say, " Hey baby, what's up?" Will that sound too much like I am trying to write something hip? I don't want people to think I am a dork cause I think it's okay to say, "Hey baby, what's up?" Maybe he should say,"....

  • That list goes on and on. You hit this great high and then you start on your way down. Most folks will say your faith in yourself is the only thing that keeps you working through the low points, on those days when your project doesn't appear to be quite the stroke of genius you first thought it was. That's what I say, too: You gotta be an egotistical bastard.

    Another aspect of writing is someone, at some point, more then likely, unless you are a complete bozo or totally unproductive, will compliment your writing. You will nod your head and thank them. You will think about it a lot for the next couple of days; It makes you feel good, but it haunts you. Where did this idea come from? How did all this happen? Do I really know what I am doing?

    After a while, you become completely disconnected with your work: you don't know how you did it, you question if you even did. This is ten times worse in something like directing, where you were merely one of many contributors. Your reaction: reassure yourself and others of your key role in this process (brag).

    Another big ego builder is the whole "there are no new ideas" thing. If you truly feel like you have created something good, you don't react well when people say things like,"This is kinda like a Tom Clancy book I read," or " This reminds me of David Lynch's early work." The ice spikes drive into your brain. Your body enters fight or flight mode. Most likely, the person whom made this comment is suddenly the victim of a tiraide about how foolish they are to make such an assumption. After all, you made it this far, therefore your are an egoist.

    The e-factor, like most things, has good and bad sides:

    P(+) - You are confident enough not to get yourself bogged down with self doubt.
    N(-) - You are confident enough that when you re-read your work, you never notice it sucks.
    P(+) - You believe in yourself, therefore you get things done.
    N(-) - You believe in yourself, therefore you never notice what a total loser you are.
    P(+) - You do something, you bust your ass on it, it turns into something great, people recognize this greatness.
    N(-) - After doing this great thing, you loose your last bit of self doubt, and never stop talking again.

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