Something I learned about writing today: SQUIRREL!

Dug the dog

I love Pixar. Pretty much any time I see a lamp hopping across the screen at the start of a show I know I can expect the next two hours to be a good time, full of all kinds of fun and silly unexpected twists. SQUIRREL!

Which is why when Emma Coates says jump, I say, when, and should I take my shoes off, and can I use a trampoline?

According to the (former) Pixar story artist, one of the keys to good story telling is surprising yourself. To do this, she suggests to “discount the 1st thing that comes to mind. And the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th – get the obvious out of the way. (source)”

Sounds like a lot of work, however instead of writing a million drafts of each tiny bit of dialogue, what I think this does mean and what I can  commit to doing is challenging the words that first come to my fingertips, and pausing for just a few moments to think is this really the best I got? And what else could there be?

The rest, as we all know, is up to the squirrels.

2 thoughts on “Something I learned about writing today: SQUIRREL!

  1. That’s a great piece of writing advice. I’ve spent long periods of time stuck on where to take my stories next, even though I have several options, simply because I know all the ideas I’ve had so far are too obvious and uninspiring. Good luck with the writing 🙂

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