• The Storyteller's Cottage

Turning a Creative Spark into a Successful Business


Right Brain Dominance: Visual, intuitive, imaginative, creative, holistic thinker, less organized. Left Brain Dominance: Analytical, orderly, logical, linear thinker, mathematical, factual. Nobel Prize winner and psychobiologist Roger W. Sperry first promoted the theory in the 1960's that the "dominant" side of human brains determines our strengths and weaknesses. Society has been labeling artists and thinkers this way ever since. In the intervening years, however, studies have shown that the human brain is not so distinctly opposed, and in fact humans use both sides of their brain in tandem.  In real life, the truth lies somewhere in between. We all know a talented artist who can't keep track of their bills, or a gifted accountant who couldn't improvise a creative story if their life depended on it.  Regardless of the scientific evidence or lack thereof, real life is full of individuals whose clear strengths and weaknesses lie along these parallel tracks. As a result, many creative people can get stuck in a petrified limbo when they consider starting a business ... caught between wishing they could monetize their art while simultaneously worrying that their strengths don't lie in the right areas. No one wants to risk leaping into a pool when they can't swim. The good news is, like many things in life, practice makes perfect.  It is absolutely possible to build up your weaknesses into strengths, especially if you deliberately seek out experts in the fields where you need assistance.  Just as we can improve our memory by playing cognitive games, and we can improve our vocabulary with intensive study, we can train our brains to improve the logic-based functions that are essential to success in business. This is not to say that every artist should sign up for classes in accounting, tax law, insurance fraud and building maintenance.  Clearly, there's a tradeoff to be made between time and money, where it makes more financial sense to pay experts in certain fields to help you, especially when the ramp-up period to mastery is long.  Instead, make good use of one-on-one coaching to get organized before your business launch and let an expert set you on the right track.  There are talented professionals out there right now who are ready to share their experience so you won't make the same mistakes they did as they were starting out.  Are you thinking of writing a novel?  Spend 30 minutes and $35 to learn exactly how to set up the structure of your book from a five-time professional author. You'll save hours, days or even weeks of rewrites if you ensure you start off on the right foot.  Are you thinking of transforming your storytelling skills into a game-based business, along the lines of an escape room?  Download a basic class and let a professional escape room designer explain how to lay out the flow of your game logically, using flowcharts, so your process hits all the "must do" highlights of the genre and avoids all the potential pitfalls that other businesses have fallen prey to.  There's nothing worse than spending weeks creating codes and props for a fantastic storyline, only to realize that your players have found a loophole that allows them to skip from the first clue right to the solution. Are you considering illustrating your own book or designing your book cover?  Sit down with a professional graphic designer and learn exactly what kind of covers attract the most readers, and what kinds of designs to avoid.  Just $75 at the beginning of your process can translate into thousands of dollars in additional sales at the end of your process.   Whether you choose to download a short video class or work with a coach personally (via Zoom), there is all sorts of help available to you before you begin your project.  Some other examples:

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