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Cosmopolitan (Philippines) - - You, You, You -

“For me, the key is to just be open and re­cep­tive. The only word com­ing to mind is ‘con­sumer,’ but I mean to con­sume ideas both within and out­side your genre, and even be­yond your own art form. One of the things that has in­spired me in the past was be­ing in artist colonies where I’d be work­ing on my book along­side play­wrights, painters, and per­form­ers. Just pay­ing at­ten­tion to their process and the things they’re work­ing on al­lows you to see the prob­lems in your work in a new way so you can find so­lu­tions.” Fol­low where your pas­sion leads you. “Ad­vice I could have used when I was younger? Fol­low what your cu­riosi­ties are, even if they don’t feel se­ri­ous. I used to have that sep­a­ra­tion in my mind of what is lit­er­ary and high-brow and what is stuff you only talk about at a fam­ily party. I think what­ever in­spires you and feels fun can be lit­er­ary and can be fod­der for your work. It doesn’t have to be ‘high cul­ture’; you just have to love it.” in­dulge in cre­ative Fuel. “I see [men­tal block] now as as part of the whole process. It’s not some­thing tak­ing you away from writ­ing; it is writ­ing. The times when you’re star­ing at the screen or the page and noth­ing’s com­ing out is as much writ­ing as when you’re fired up and in the zone and the words are flow­ing. One piece of good ad­vice I got along the way is if you can’t write, you can al­ways read, and that inevitably gets things mov­ing again for me.” ac­cept who you are. “In my 20s, I was very apolo­getic about call­ing my­self a writer. But when I re­al­ized how religious I could be­come about the dis­ci­pline and the process of sit­ting down each day, re­vis­ing drafts, that’s when I felt like a writer. That came be­fore sell­ing and pub­lish­ing the book. Even though the first ques­tion you hear when you tell some­one you’re a writer is, ‘Where have you pub­lished?’ and ‘Have I heard of you?’, I felt less apolo­getic about be­cause I’d come to re­ally feel that, yeah, that’s what I do.” For­get about the ex­ter­nals. “This may not be true for ev­ery­one,but the one thing I’ve no­ticed is that fan­ta­siz­ing about ex­ter­nal things is a re­ally good sign that you’re not work­ing. It was most painful

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