How to Develop Your Creative Writing Skills

Creative writing takes practice and commitment. Follow these helpful tips on how to develop your creative writing skills.


Write every day

creative writingLike any other skill, creative writing requires practice. You should schedule time every day to write, even if only for a few minutes. You can find daily prompts online, or keep a running list of ideas in a notebook. The key is to get the ideas out of your head and onto the page. Figure out which time of day works best for you. Maybe you prefer to get up before dawn and knock out a page or two before work. If you are a night owl, fire up the coffee pot and get to work. If you’re not in a writing routine already, now is the time to start. Once you establish the habit, the writing will come more naturally.

Read

This may seem obvious, but every writer is also a reader. You probably already have a favorite genre, so branch out. Pick up one of your mother’s romance novels. Try out your dad’s spy thriller. Borrow your niece’s young adult saga about a zombie K-pop band on a post-apocalyptic world tour. The more you read, especially about characters and plots you’re not familiar with, the more likely you are to develop your own new ideas.

Rewrite

Ever spent hours pouring over every word of a novel, just to be disappointed in the last few pages? Nailing a conclusion is tricky, but the end of a story is also an opportunity to tell it in a new way. Take the last story that let you down and try rewriting the conclusion. Let your imagination run wild. This isn’t your story to start anyway, so take some risks. By skipping the hard parts of world-building and character development, you can now focus on delivering the perfect wrapup for readers like yourself. Make sure you make the ending satisfying and this exercise will serve as great practice for when you have to develop conclusions in your own stories.

Observe

Go sit in a park, in your favorite bar, or in baggage claim at the local airport. Watch how people greet each other, note their peculiar mannerisms, and eavesdrop on some conversations. The best ideas for your creativity is the real world around you.

Unplug

You’ve probably heard this tip before, but in order to stimulate your creativity, you have to free your brain from distractions. Put your phone on “Do Not Disturb,” wait to binge your favorite show until the weekend, and focus. Your best ideas come at times when you’re disengaged. The shower is a perfect place to work out a tricky plot twist, and driving without the radio allows you to gather your thoughts. Imagine your main character is riding shotgun and ask them personal questions your readers will have.

Every writer is different, and you will have to discover what works best for you. These tips will help you hone your own skills as a creative writer.