Creative writing is anything where the purpose is to express thoughts, feelings and emotions rather than to simply convey information.
Sounds easy enough, right?
With my jump into the world of writing, I quickly discovered that it’s actually not so easy at all. I start out super motivated and filled with amazing ideas, but after a few paragraphs I end up sitting at my desk staring at one sentence for 3 hours; inevitably ending up wanting to throw my computer out the window.
I have friends and family who are fantastic writers; they’re funny, persuasive, informative and totally creative. When I brought them my writing frustrations, I noticed a few trends in their advice.
So before you freak out like I did (more than once I must admit), stop, breathe, and try these simple tricks keeping you focused and hopefully still sane.
Learn to walk before you run.
I know you’re eager to get started, but you need to be ready for a little disappointment because your first work probably won’t come out as good as you had anticipated.
Start small. It’d be crazy to think you can just whip up a novel with no real writing experience. Try stories, blogs, or poems to get you started!
Practice, practice, practice.
Just like learning a sport or a new language, practice makes perfect. It’s so easy to get distracted and instead start painting your nails or checking Twitter updates. Try to silence these unproductive voices and stick with it, your writing will come I promise.
Try to write something small every day, it will help train your brain to write more easily.
Know when you’re most creative.
We all have a time of day when we are most alert, awake, and motivated. For some people it’s right in the morning and for some it’s at night. I work best in the late morning or early afternoon.
Try to target the time when you’re most productive and work within it. Remember you can always experiment with different times.
This is definitely where I struggle most. My mother always told me, “It’s easier to correct, than create.” I try to remember this when writing. Even the best writers in the world need to edit their work. Don’t expect to get it perfect on the first draft.
Once you’ve finished a first draft, take a break and come back to it the next day. You’ll be shocked at the things you notice with a fresh set of eyes. When you’re stuck on a stubborn thought, it helps to have someone look at it and provide an unattached perspective.
Have a little fun, would ya?
Sometimes when I’m looking at a blank screen I feel like I would rather be running a marathon than writing. Always remember that creative writing is about expressing yourself and sharing with others; it’s meant to be fun, an outlet for emotions and opinions.
If you’re not having fun, switch projects. Try something super exciting and spark that fire inside that got you started in the first place!
Writing is not always easy, and it’s doesn’t always come quickly. It takes time, practice, and lots of patience. If you’re passionate about writing, you will find your voice eventually.
I’m still trying to find mine, but I know it’s in there somewhere…