What is Creative Writing?
Adding Fun, Creativity and Life to your Written Content
Creative writing is, as the name suggests the form of writing that utilizes the creative talents of a writer. It is a presentation of ideas, often in a figurative language with an attractive imagery. Creative writing is different from all other writing forms. While most of the other forms of writing are a channel of presenting some facts or information to the reader, creative writing also includes an element of fun and entertainment both for the reader and writer.
Creative Writing is also a popular form of self- expression, comparable to music and art. Writers have known to fill up pages within a short span of time as the inspiration kept flowing. For others it takes a lot of time to express the idea that either pops up or has been brewing for a while. In a way, it can be compared to art. The origin of the work arises mostly out of imagination, like a painting, and the creative writer, as an artist, uses words as his palette to put his imagination onto paper.
Where do you commonly encounter Creative Writing?
Traditionally, all work of fiction was creative writing. Stories, Novels, Poetry, Plays, Film Scripts and even songs are all creative writing. However, not all creative writing is fiction. Memoirs, biographies, travelogues etc. and even some sections of journalism use a considerable amount of imagination and fanciful expression.
In the online world, creative writing has found its own space in blogs, articles and other web content, apart from e-books, e-magazines, etc.
Applications of Creative Writing
Imagine the following scenarios:
1. Book or Memoir: A doctor has a collection of experiences in a diary or a journal that she wishes to share with the public at large. She finds herself unable to compile all these in a book acceptable for publishing. A creative writer can help write a book for her, by elaborating on her experiences.
2. Travel Writing: A travel company wants to engage more clients. But they lack the time and resources to write travel blogs for their website. A creative writer can step in to write these blogs for them.
3. Conversational Blogs: A business (e.g. a restaurant) that needs to attract clients can use attention-catching blogs to increase client-traction to their website and eventually enter into a business engagement. These blogs are easy-flowing with interesting content that adds value to the reader.
4. Content Marketing: Marketing & Advertising: Content marketing is about client engagement on websites. Owners of websites require a significant number of people to visit their websites. Customers barely spend a few seconds on the website unless they find something attractive to engage them. Attractive and fun flyers, advertisements, brochures, posters etc. will certainly grab attention and you job is done.
5. Website Content: Websites too work on the principles of attracting and maintaining the clients’ attention. The more engaging the content and appearance of a website, the better will be its customer engagement statistics.
6. E-magazines & newsletters: E-magazines and newsletters, like their print counterpart depend upon articles on attractive and relevant subjects. The more fun and engaging they are the higher is the readership.
7. Articles: Articles written for magazines, websites etc. require creative thinking to be able to add value to the reader, at least an entertainment value. Informative articles too can be made fun so they become more fluid to reach a larger audience.
8. Children’s Writing: This is a specialized kind of writing because we are here catering to a very different kind of audience – the little ones with an already fertile imagination. The language is age appropriate to keep the reader or the listener hooked. Storybooks which keep a child’s attention are somewhat easier to manage. Even the non-fiction (educational books) can be made fun and attractive by using a bit of imagination and creativity.
9. Stories: Stories, novels, novellas require imagination of an entirely different kind. It is not only the language but much more the plot, settings and characters that need to be carefully developed to make an interesting and captivating read. Stories can also be about the success of an individual, or an organisation or even an idea. The writing and development of these also require creativity in the presentation style.
10. Scripts: Scripts are usually required for plays but these days with the social media it has become common to make short informational or entertainment videos to put up on YouTube. To present the idea or information in an easy and entertaining way, the beginning always lies in a good script, written creatively.
Elements of Creative Writing
1. IMAGINATION: Creating Plots & Characters
As has been mentioned earlier, most of the works in Creative writing rely heavily on imagination. Creation of characters, settings, plot, storyline, theme etc. are the ways in which the imagination of the writers manifests itself. Works like biographies, memoirs and travelogues also require some imagination to fill up the skeletal structure that is provided or is to be worked on. A town that is woven into a personal anecdote is more fun to read about than a dry ‘what-to-see-in–it’ list.
2. LANGUAGE: Adding Style & Emotions
The Creative writer can take more liberties with his or her work where language is concerned. For e.g. Artistic license allows for moulding the elements of language to suit the writers needs of expression, within limits of course. In a children’s book, for instance, it is totally acceptable for something to be described as ‘Ginormous’ to depict something bigger than enormous. The language is richer and figures of speech are used to enhance the prose. Again, imagination comes in handy to create and employ such figures of speech that create the desired impact. However, many of the factual writings like biographies and travelogues can be enriched and made more interesting by using the more decorative language. The same facts, description of various destinations can be made not just more readable but also more fun.
3. INTERPRETATION: Expressing Opinions & Anecdotes
Unlike structured writing like research papers etc. where facts are accurately presented, creative writing is more open to representing facts based on the interpretation of the writer. As in the case of some journalism, an event can be created into a news story from many different perspectives. A travelogue can also be based on the interpretation of the writer. A destination can be made instantly interesting if the writer describes it in a way which catches the fancy of the reader. This is usually the case when the writer has herself visited the place.
4. COMMUNICATION: Building Conversations & Discussions
A creative writer tries to achieve an optimal combination of ‘self-expression’ + ‘mass communication’. While it is true that this writing is expressive in its form, it is also a means of communication of ideas. Take a copywriter, for example. She takes bits of available information and using her imagination converts it into an attractive piece of writing, often an advertisement or a marketing tool or a brochure, that influences the purchasing decisions of the people.
Attribution for images: Unsplash.com, Freepik.com, Pixabay.com