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A Guide to Creative Writing

“Writing is the painting of the voice.”- Voltaire

We have all enjoyed a good film, stand-up comedy, thrilling book series, poetry, and music very often. We probably also follow our favourite recipe or fashion blog religiously. Any writing that displays imagination and invention has a significant role in our lives. Creative writing is part and parcel of our daily routines. As such, we can see how important and beneficial it is to know and study creative writing.

What is Creative Writing?

Creative writing encompasses fiction, poetry, plays, scripts, songs, informative articles, stories, and anything that entertains and/or provides knowledge in an interesting way. As opposed to academic or journalistic writing, which is straightforward, to the point, and can sometimes seem boring, creative writing is popular for its relatability and easy comprehension amongst audiences.

Creative writing addresses and appeals majorly to the senses of sight and sound. People have always turned to art across the world, be it for learning, leisure, or as an occupation. Writing has the ability to evoke different emotions amongst audiences. In this sense, it is very inclusive, as the reader or spectator does not feel left out of the entire experience of consuming art. In fact, the audience is mostly the sole focus for whom a particular type of writing is created in the first place.

Types of Creative Writing

Creative writing mostly brings novels and poetry to mind, but the field is vast, with multiple genres being created every year.

Classical creative writing includes poetry, stories, novels, play scripts, movie scripts, or song lyrics. But with the technological boom and industries moving offline to online, many more genres have come up in the last decade.

Today, writing for social media, for digital marketing, blogs, e-books, emailers, retail product descriptions, book/movie/product reviews all come within the purview of creative writing.

Even the traditional prose and poetry has new forms such as micro-fiction, lyrics for rap music, spoken word poetry, stand-up comedy scripts, and the like.

Creative Writing is for everybody

When one says ‘Creative Writing’, do you picture a person with spectacles, unkempt hair, sitting at the table with a pile of books all around? Or a person wearing a suit, typing away on a keyboard, with a steaming cup of coffee at the side? Both these images are quite accurate. In fact, either of them could be you.

People often believe that a writer, lyricist, poet, or playwright must have been to an expensive school, studied language, etymology, or culture in great detail, or comes from a family of artists and poets. While this may be true, it is not at all necessary. Any of us can be writers any day. All you need to do is to stretch your imagination and put your thoughts on paper. If you have seen the animation film Ratatouille, you know what we are talking about. In food critic Anton Ego’s words- “Not everyone can become a great artist, but a great artist can come from anywhere.” So, if you have an idea- whether it’s a couplet, a song, or a character; just put it on paper and bring it to life.

Benefits of Creative writing

Whether you pursue it as a hobby or a profession, the benefits of Creative writing are manifold. Studies show that writing keeps our brains sharp and encourages us into ‘positive thinking’. Although writing by hand has now been largely replaced by typing, sequential hand movements activate regions in the brain that are responsible for language, healing, and working memory. 1

Writing not only develops imagination but also improves focus and patience. For those who prefer not to share their thoughts out loud, writing is a wonderful medium of expression. It has a calming effect on the mind, and by pouring out what’s in your heart, you feel lighter. Writing has helped many individuals avoid or recover from anxiety and depression.

If you decide to write in order to publish or for others to read, the recognition and praise can bring a lot of positive reinforcement to you. On the other hand, if you indulge in journal writing or anything that others will not read, you can be free of the fear of judgement and let your thoughts be as honest and wild as they can get.

Creative writing is hugely beneficial for children, as it improves the clarity of thought, ensures better articulation, and develops self-confidence. Children become more compassionate, have better communication skills, and overall better emotional and mental health. Children with a healthy and creative mind react better in unexpected situations and are good at problem-solving. They also handle failure or pressure well.

Studying Creative Writing will greatly improve the academic performance of children. They will be able to write wonderful, presentable letters and essays. Their talents for writing poetry and short stories can someday flourish into a full-fledged hobby or profession.

Creative Writing as a hobby and a profession

These days, it is not enough to just know your field of work. Creative writing has become an important ability and requirement in almost any job. No matter what business it is, selling, marketing, promoting, everything now happens online. Along with creating a product or service, businesses need people who can influence audiences with words.

If you wish to indulge in creative writing as a hobby, you can start your own blog, audio or video channel, podcasts, or just write for yourself.

As a profession, there is no dearth of opportunities when it comes to creative writing. Content writers are called upon day in and day out to write for clients, partners, readers, listeners, and anyone at the receiving end.

Here are some of the most popular and in-demand writing opportunities today

  • Digital marketeer
  • Content curator
  • Blog writer
  • Website content writer
  • Book/film/ product review writer
  • Scriptwriter for OTT platforms
  • Scriptwriter for marketing videos and short films
  • Copywriter
  • Publishing consultant
  • Editor, proof-reader
  • Writer for reality television

Studying Creative Writing

Creative writing is extremely subjective, and you have the freedom to express yourself the way you want. But a bit of formal training will help writers put their thoughts into a correct form. It will help you channelize random ideas into a particular genre, which makes it easy for you to write and for others to understand and enjoy what you write.

A creative writing course introduces you to the various writing styles and genres so that you can pick the one that’s best suited to your personal style of writing. If you wish to take up creative writing professionally, knowing different writing forms and their requirements is an added advantage. It will help understand the task at hand and deliver what the clients want efficiently and in less time. Classvio has creative writing courses for all levels and ages. Signup here to attend a free trial class.

Creative expression has always been the backbone of a happy, healthy, tolerant, and informed society. Writing is the foundation on which art and culture are built. So, get those creative juices flowing and pick up a pen. You never know what talent you may have hidden in you!

  1. Ways that writing with a pen positively affects your brain (Forbes)