Treat the game like improv. "Yes, and" your players when you can, and ask them to "yes, and" you and your plots. You are all storytellers.
Improvising:If you were to offer one single piece of GMing advice, what would it be?
(If this works out, I'll pick a few for an article).
But likewise, don't be afriad to say "NO" when you need to. There are plenty of good reasons to say no, not just to in-game activity but player behaviour, attitudes and actions. Not everything that happens at the table is okay. Nor should it be. A DM must have a firm and steady hand and be willing to use it.Anytime you want to say "No" try to say "No, but..." or "Yes, if..." instead. Reward creativity, even if it stifles your plans.