The art of writing in an artistic manner can be termed as creative writing. Such sort of writing style can be differentiated from academic or technical writing styles. This artistic manner of writing is done in order to attract the attention of the reading audience.
Any writing which is done imaginatively is to express the situations artistically. “The purpose of creative writing is to both entertain and share human experience, like love or loss. Writers attempt to get at a truth about humanity through poetics and storytelling. If you’d like to try your hand at creative writing, just keep in mind that whether you are trying to express a feeling or a thought, the first step is to use your imagination.
In the past, creative writing was a mystery to me. I assumed that one day I would be asked to creatively write something and bells would go off in my brain, words would start spilling onto the page, and I would be enlightened with literary powers. I realize now that this sounds insane, but no one ever told me that I didn’t need to be enlightened to write something valuable.
I think I didn’t truly understand what creative writing was or how important it is until this summer when I participated in the Young Writers Workshop at John Carroll University in Cleveland. I spent two hours a day sitting on the floor with a pencil and notebook pondering over old memories, world issues, why the smell of coffee holds so much sentimental value, and what it was like to be alive during the French revolution. It didn’t matter what I wrote as long as it was relevant to me.
I believe creative writing is essential because it encourages the author to make mistakes. At an early age, we learn to avoid this as much as possible to the point where we stop ourselves from trying new things because we fear imperfection. If your standards for your work are unachievable, lower them. Write something with the knowledge that it will be terrible.
You can always revise it later and polish your ideas. Once there’s something on the page the words will come more easily. And don’t be afraid to write something stupid. The best story I read that week was started by the author imagining a giant warehouse where all the food served in school cafeterias is made. As long as it matters to you, it’s worth exploring.
You may not know it yet, but you are constantly immersed in creative writing. Your favourite books, of course, are the most obvious example, but did you ever notice that song lyrics count as poetry? Any type of script for a movie, play, or comedy routine is creative writing. Even memes are a good example. And where would we be without memes?
Creative writing is the one place where the ludicrous and the philosophical are equally valued as they should be.
As a practice creative writing is, to say the least, under-appreciated in France. It is a discipline that thrives in other countries, though it is largely ignored inside our borders.
As if here it were fractured into two different activities: on the one hand, academic writing which is valued for its structure, and on the other: creative writing which is side-lined, and supposedly does not lead to a full-time job. Hopefully, the trend is slowly changing.
The model, or what is happening next door:
In other countries, creative writing has been introduced in schools and universities as a new way to learn and develop oneself.
As an Erasmus student I have spent time at an Irish university and participated in two different approaches: a class entitled literary composition and a student group: The Writer’s Society, both based on the concept of creative writing.
At the university level, creative writing is encouraged as teachers push their students to learn how to write stories and to expand their vocabulary in a non-academic way while in an academic atmosphere; students also devote some of their free time to practicing and discussing writing among themselves. This way, students learn to be creative as well as structured.
French advances towards creative writing:
Inspired by the emergence of creative writing courses abroad, the French have also changed their habits and feelings towards writing at the university level. Thus creative writing is slowly being developed and accepted in French universities.
Creative but not only:
Creative writing is not only a means to help students unleash their creative side and feel more comfortable when writing in and about everyday life, but has also been proven to improve language learning.
At our very own university, creative writing has been used as a new approach to mastering a foreign language. For the past eight years, it has been a part of the English studies, implemented by Sara Greaves and Marie-Laure Schultze, both researchers teaching at Aix-Marseille University.
Their workshops are designed to offer an alternative method to learning and practicing English by appealing to the student’s imagination and feelings. The dissociation of form and meaning has a way of revitalizing language relationships and thus improving writing skills1.
By writing in a creative way instead of an academic one, students have to adjust their skills to make the language their own and open themselves to the otherness of the tongue.
The creative writing classes taking place at the AMU operate at the nexus between language, literature and translation classes. Creative writing at an academic level is more than just an asset: it is a flourishing discipline, helping students with their personal writing as well as academic writing, and has also proven to be very effective in language learning.”