Creative essay writing means freedom. Freedom of imagination, freedom of speech on a whole new level, freedom to be anyone at any time while still being yourself, and freedom to travel to any place, be it a small town in California or an undiscovered planet in the farthest reaches of the universe. But creative writing takes time, patience, and know-how. While anyone, not only an essay writer is capable of grabbing a pen and jotting down a story, it is safe to say that not everyone is able to make a story complete.
Like everything else, creative writing has to start somewhere. For the purpose of this post, we will take a step back and explain how to begin. All future posts will build upon this one and explore the essay writing process including, but not limited to, character creation, staging, building a plot, weaving in subplots, and dialogue.
Writing Basics: How to Start
First, buy a notebook or some index cards and #2 pencils. For now, these will be your writing tools.
Find a quiet spot free of interruption and other distractions. This is important. Thoughts are like fog sometimes; there and then gone. Continuous distraction or interruption can dissipate a thought before it ever has a chance to breathe.
The next step is putting something on the page or what is commonly referred to as prewriting. Creative writing is generally fiction writing and can be on a small scale, such as a short story or novella, or it can be on a larger scale such as a book. No matter the scope, the first question is, what will you write? A thriller? A mystery? A fantasy story? No matter what you choose to write, actually getting something on the page will help iron out where you want the story to go. Since this is where the magic begins, we will explore the different types of prewriting.
See Also: Best Writing App for Students
The key to this technique is to start essay writing and keep writing. Do not stop to edit! Ignore misspelled words – forget about the punctuation and proper grammar. During this process, it is not important. The important part is to simply write anything and everything that pops into your mind. It does not have to make sense or be understood by anyone else but you. Simply let the words flow. An example of freewriting pertaining to advertising with lawn signs might look something like this:
Have you ever noticed how many signs there are beside the road? I saw more than 20 signs today and even though I don’t remember all of them, I did remember Larry’s Yard Service. I was told that these signs were pretty cheap. So if Larry bought 100 signs and put them out all over town, he probably gets a lot of calls from people wanting to use his service. My neighbor’s son mows lawns too. I wonder how many customers he has? He’d probably have more if he put out a few signs. I wonder how much 25 signs would cost? If they are less than $50.00, he could probably make that much back after the first 2 lawns. That would be a good investment and he could make a lot more money than he does now…
Notice the general idea is there. It gives the essay writer something to work with and ideas to research that would help add substance. While this form of creative writing cannot officially be termed “solid”, it has formed the platform that will allow the creation of something solid and informational.
A lot like freewriting, brainstorming is a way of allowing thoughts to flow free and see where they go. The main difference is that brainstorming does not use complete sentences. Brainstorming tends to look more like a list. Using the above sign advertising idea, a brainstorm might look a bit like this:
- Lawns signs
- Good or bad investment
- Will it build a profit
- How many customers before
- How many after
- What’s the risk
Again, this does not build a story but how many ideas did it generate? How many research options? It might not be as impressive as brain surgery, but it gets the job done!
This is a great technique for visual learners. This is a lot like brainstorming but bubbling creates an image that makes it easy to associate the main idea with supporting ideas. Starting with the main idea of advertising with signs, all other things related to this idea would go in their circle, and the ideas related to those ideas in their circles – so forth and so on. Continue to add circles and thoughts until you run out. Sometimes, this can create a fairly complicated “map”. But for this tutorial, we will make it on a small scale. Keeping with the advertising example, bubbling would look something like this:
Bubbling is also good for organizing the ideas generated during a freewriting or brainstorming session.
There are a handful of other prewriting techniques that can also help. Stay tuned for the next article where we will cover clustering, listing, and informal outlining.