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Creative Writing Tips for Beginners...

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Creativity doesn’t just belong to a chosen few. It belongs to (and is inherent) in all of us. No exceptions. Everyone is creative by default. Including you. Question any part of you that doubts it, then tell it to take a (very long) hike, you hear?

If you're new to creative writing, here are some tips for you that I hope you find useful:

1) Words/ideas can come from anywhere at any time - anywhere - so walk with a notebook or a recording device. Keep it close to you, even next to your bed!

2) When a writing idea comes to you, you might not actually feel like writing at the time. And that’s okay. You don't have to write there and then and follow it through. However, do jot the idea down so you don't lose it and you can come back to it if/when you're ready.

3) Don’t expect to write everything in one day or in one sitting – sometimes, it can take time. Be patient with the process and with yourself. Let your idea simmer. Let the story happen. Give it the time it needs.

4) On the other hand, you might write something - a poem, a story - in five minutes flat or in an hour and feel that it’s complete. That can happen too. As long as you’re happy with it, then that’s fine. The point is: be open to the creative process - how and when it happens - it’s a very interesting phenomena this creativity thingamajig!

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5) If you get stuck on something and feel yourself getting frustrated, walk away from it for a while. Do something else. Go for a walk, make a call, grab a chocolate, coffee, mint tea or something; then go back to it today, tomorrow, in a couple of weeks/months - it’s up to you.

6) Creativity is creativity. Whatever you write comes from that magical energy. If there ever comes a time when you judge your writing, or judge it harshly, remember that. It might help put things in context. Think about that magical energy.

7) Any ideas, a word or two, one-liners, paragraphs you don’t feel you need or you feel aren’t good enough can sometimes be unrealised diamonds and can prove to be useful in the future. Don't throw them away just yet. Hold onto them for a week or two, then go back to them and see how you feel. As an example, there are pictures I delete off the camera roll on my phone. They stay in the deleted section for a while, but sometimes, I do revisit them and undelete a few because I don't feel the same way I did about them.

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8) Use other art forms to explore your writing: pictures/photos, music, paintings, dance, etc. Also, let nature inspire you. Let colour. Tastes. Smells. Textures.

9) Your voice matters.

10) Your voice matters. (the repetition is deliberate to make a point)

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11) Try not to compare yourself to others. There is only one you, and only one them, and only one of everyone, and isn't that awesome?! :) (as Connor MacLeod said in the film, The Highlander, "There can be only one" .....orrrrr as Chesney Hawkes sang, "I aaaam the one and only".)

12) Use Google to look for writing forums to join; some can be really supportive.

13) Don't forget to have fun! Getting to know a new expressive part of yourself is an adventure, and adventures are cool. Be ya own Indiana Jones or Lara Croft. :)


Okay, so you give creative writing a go for a bit (or more than a bit) and find it's not really for you...

Meh, don't sweat it.

Try something else.

Thank creative writing for its time and move on. You never know, you might be drawn back to it in the future. It'll always be there. It's not going anywhere. It likes it here. And it likes you. It rejects no one.

There are so many other creative things you could get into if creative writing turns out not to be your thing; the world really is your tortilla. (and the funny thing is as you explore other creative pursuits, you might begin to notice how creative writing has been useful.)

Here's to self exploration and expression.

© 2009 Eman

Comments

Eman (author) on May 07, 2009:

Hi Shibashake,

You found what works for you. Very important. Congrats!

shibashake on March 17, 2009:

Very good advice. Recently, I have become more Zen about writing. I used to try and set a schedule - "at least 2 articles per week". That didn't work out too well. Seemed too much like work and *that* really took the enjoyment out of the whole thing.

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