The only three questions that matter.

bw headphones

Recently I watched an interview with Takashi Miike, the director of the much-adored Japanese horror film AuditionThe interviewer kept asking him what effect he wanted to achieve with his audience. He kept saying variations of, “I can’t control what others think, I work to please myself,” but it’s as if the interviewer didn’t believe him, or didn’t want to accept that art can come from a place of such apparent selfishness.

Whereas my question is, “How can it not?”

When I’m writing, I ask myself three questions:

 

(1) Does this excite me?

(2) Does this delight me?

(3) Is this true?

 

…and if the answer to all three is “yes,” then I know I’m on track.

I don’t know how other writers work. But that’s how I work. They’re all simple yes-or-no questions, and they cover intuition, creativity, and integrity, respectively. If the answer to any of the above is “no,” over the long term, excepting the necessities of drafts and exposition, then I know I have to change something.

And it’s great as a mantra.

does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true does this excite me does this delight me is this true…



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