October 14, 2008

The Simplicity of Creative Writing

Filed under: writing — unwriter1 @ 1:54 pm
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The Simplicity of Creative Writing
“Alas poor Yorik, I knew him well.” In the play he’s holding the skull of some nefarious character. Or, how about, “Hark, what light through yon window breaks?” Wouldn’t it be easier to say, “Hey, your mom’s light is on, pretend you’re asleep?” Actually, no it wouldn’t have been. These words of the Bard had to be phrased with the wording of the time. Had he said “My old pal Yorik is now in kit form”, he would have been laughed out of England. Let’s move ahead a bit in time and try another example. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Right. Any idiot knows it can’t be both, or can it? Dickens book, Tale of Two Cities talks about the two towns, London in its heyday and Paris during the revolution.

What does all of this have to do with creative writing? These are examples of ordinary, for their time, words used not only creatively but designed to fit with the expected audience. Let’s try another one. “What the ___, my car is talking to me!” That wouldn’t work for Shakespeare or Dickens, but will now if you’re writing about a car.

So what then is creative writing? You, the writer are using a pen as your brush and the paper as your palette. With the words at your disposal, paint the world around you. You have twenty-six letters to create a verbal symphony. Turn the phrase just right and it can be very sharp. Turn it another way and it comes out flat. Put the words and phrases together like chords to create a harmonious litany. With some flat phrases you can create dissonance. With the right chord change, you can create a harmonious symphony displaying the colors of the rainbow.

Music, Art, and writing are the top three creative crafts. Your picture can be audio, visual, or verbal/written. The point is, you have a message to deliver. But, to get your message across, you have to generate interest. But if you don’t catch your reader’s with the opening, you’ve probably lost them completely.

Creative writing is simple. The mechanics of writing aren’t that easy however. Put your words on paper. Learn the mechanics of writing. Let others read what you wrote. If you’ve grabbed their attention from beginning to end, Congratulations!
You are a creative writer!



  1. Good post. Creativity, relevant creativity is a living, changing animal. Can’t pin it down to a specific way of writing (or art) that will remain unchanged forever.

    Comment by Marvin D Wilson — October 14, 2008 @ 2:08 pm | Reply

  2. Thanks Ron for a good post. Another reason to read the classics and then wonder how you would say that same thing in today’s lingo.

    Comment by Helen Ginger — October 14, 2008 @ 2:18 pm | Reply

  3. Hey Ron! Love your site. I added you to my blogroll, too. Thank you for visiting my little blog!


    Comment by candaceclayton100 — October 14, 2008 @ 6:21 pm | Reply

  4. Wonderful observations!!! I enjoyed this 🙂

    Comment by Joyce A. Anthony — October 14, 2008 @ 6:33 pm | Reply

  5. That is so true. How inspiring for a young writer like myself. Some people do not see the creative art in writing, they think it is a simply task. It takes time to become a skilled writer, to know how to twist a phrase, form an image, etc. I loved this observation.

    Comment by Adrianne Graves — October 15, 2008 @ 11:56 am | Reply

  6. Trite, I know but it’s like fishing. Start with that hook. Keep reeling them in.

    Morgan Mandel

    Comment by Morgan Mandel — October 17, 2008 @ 3:34 am | Reply

  7. Ron,
    I like the way you relate writing to music and creating a beautiful symphony. That’s a great analogy.

    I have tried to reach you by e-mail and am not sure if my messages are getting through. If you haven’t received them, let me know.

    Comment by Lillie Ammann — October 17, 2008 @ 6:18 am | Reply

  8. Good stuff Ron.
    If you leave now you can make the writer’s meeting in Lamar, Colorado tomorrow evening.

    Comment by Oris Reed — October 19, 2008 @ 1:39 am | Reply

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