You Can’t Be Creative And Critical At The Same Time


“You can’t be creative and critical at the same time.” – Author Jean Hagar

Writing is creative (right brain) work. When you write, just write. Don’t worry about punctuation, sentence structure, or grammar. Let creativity flow.

A lot of writers stop here. They feel passionate about what they write. So they assume that it is anointed, direct from God, and does not need editing.

Even ideas that a writer receives from God flow through the writer’s mind. Writers today are not writing the infallible Word of God; rather, they are expressing ideas from God. These ideas are processed in the mind, so the finished product reflects the writer’s vocabulary, knowledge, and mindset. Thus, it needs editing–first, by the writer himself, then by an editor.

But, before worrying about the editing process, let the right side of the brain go . . . write. Let the words flow.

Then switch to the left brain (critical mode). Go back and edit. Critique your work. Rewrite.

Do not attempt to edit as you write for “you can’t be creative and critical at the same time.”

Left Brain Right Brain
Critical Editing Mode Creative Writing Mode

Is it possible that a critical spirit could stop the flow of creativity? Absolutely. Creativity is the Spirit of the Creator. When a writer is critical, whether it be of others, of himself, even of his work, he stops the flow of the Spirit.

So when you hit a writer’s block, pray, “Lord Jesus, search my heart. Deliver me from a critical spirit. Let Your creative Spirit flow through me so I can write as I know I have been called to do.” Then, when you are finished writing whatever the Spirit has inspired, switch gears and critically edit your work. Writers should edit their own work because they can be certain that others will critique it whether they do, or not.

When the critical spirit goes, The Spirit of the Creator flows.


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