Why Learn Creative Writing?
Why learn creative writing? Truthfully, creative writing is one of the most misunderstood disciplines in the 21st century. When people think of a creative writing course, they often imagine a group of lofty, out-of-touch people who wear argyle sweater vests and have unproductive conversations about abstract concepts.
In reality, nothing could be further from the truth: the best writing classes remain engaged with the real world, and the skills gained in a creative writing course apply to nearly every facet of daily life.
If you’re wondering whether it’s worth picking up a course in fiction, nonfiction, or poetry, we have five reasons to learn creative writing. But first, let’s talk about what actually happens in a creative writing course.
The Benefits of Creative Writing
1. Why Learn Creative Writing: Improved Self-Expression
Improving your writing skills leads to stronger communication. When you practice finding the right word in a story or poem, you engage the same parts of your brain that are active in everyday writing and speaking. A creative writing course subconsciously turns you into a more effective communicator.
The importance of precise language and self-advocacy translates well into both interpersonal relationships and working environments. Take it from this expert on how writing and self-advocacy results in career and leadership success.
2. Why Learn Creative Writing: Job Success
This brings us to our next point: great writing leads to job success. Of course, your boss probably isn’t expecting you to write emails in the form of a short story or a sonnet – though if they are expecting this, you have a pretty cool boss.
In reality, almost every job requires some sort of written work, whether that’s simple written communication or something more elaborate, like publishing data or marketing materials. In a creative writing class, you practice the style and grammar rules necessary for effective writing, both within the realms of literature and in career-related writing. Sharpening your writing and creativity skills might just land you your next promotion.
3. Why Learn Creative Writing: Improved Thinking Skills
That might seem like a bold claim, so think about it this way. Without language, our thoughts wouldn’t have form. We might not need language to think “I’m hungry” or “I like cats,” but when it comes to more abstract concepts, language is key. How would you think about things like justice, revenge, or equality without the words to express them?
When you hone in on your ability to find choice, specific words, and when you work on the skills of effective storytelling and rhetoric, you improve your ability to think in general. Good writing yields great thinking!
4. Why Learn Creative Writing: Empathy
Reading and writing both rely on empathy, especially when it comes to being an effective workshop participant. When we read and write stories, we situate ourselves in the shoes of other people; when we read and write poetry, we let language navigate us through emotion.
The importance of creative writing relies on empathy. We practice empathy whenever we listen to another person’s life story, when someone tells us about their day, and when we sit down with a client or work partner. When we write, we practice the ability to listen as well as to speak, making us more effective communicators and more compassionate human beings.
5. Why Learn Creative Writing: It’s Fun!
In case you’re not convinced that a writing course is right for you, let’s clarify one more fact: creative writing is fun. Whether you’re in a fiction writing course, starting a memoir, crafting a poem, or writing for the silver screen, you’re creating new worlds and characters. In the sandbox of literature, you’re in control, and when you invest yourself into the craft of writing, something beautiful emerges.
Collaboration and Communication
A technical writer must have strong communication skills, along with exceptional writing and grammar skills. A bachelor’s degree in Journalism, English, or Communications is often required. However, some companies require a degree and/or knowledge in a specialized field, like computer science, engineering, or finance.
- Ability to Work Autonomously
- Analyze Information and Draw Conclusions
- Create Diagrams, Drawings, and Charts to Explain Product Usage
- Develop and Maintain Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)
- Develop Style Guide
- Ensure Consistency
- Excellent Grammar and Punctuation
- Excellent Planning and Organizational Skills
- Gather User Feedback
- Generate Help Files and FAQs
- Help Users Understand Intricate and Technical Information
- Knowledgeable of Industry Regulations
- Limit Product Complexity
- Maintain and Update Document Library
- Manage Documentation Process
- Multitask Assignments
- Prepare Internal and External Technical Documents
- Provide Solutions to Product Issues
- Review Documents for Completeness and Accuracy
- Standardize Product Content
- Strong Attention to Detail
- Strong Understanding of Product Features and User Needs
- Product Knowledge
- Understand Information Design and Architecture
- Work Closely with Technical and Non-Technical Team Members
- Work Well Under Pressure to Meet Deadlines
- Write and Edit Product Publications
- Write and Organize Instructional Documents
More Writing and Editing Skills
- Identifying Theme
- Omni Media
- Blog Writing
- News Writing
- Print Writing
- Proposal Writing
- Web Writing
- Presentation Writing
- Creative Writing
- Feature Writing
- Magazine Writing
- Inductive Reasoning
- Deductive Reasoning
- Stress Tolerance
- Lie Detection
- Establishing Rapport
- Gauging What Will Interest Readers
- Handling Criticism from Editors and Readers
- Incorporating the Right Data to Support Storylines
- Interviewing Experts
- Protecting the Confidentiality of Sources
- Reading Comprehension
How to Make Your Skills Stand Out
Be Ready to Provide Samples: For some positions, you may be asked to submit writing samples in place of or in addition to a cover letter. Choose those projects and writing samples that are most relevant to the client’s project.
Use Skill Words During Job Interviews: In many cases, educational or work history or subject matter are not directly related to writing or editing might be relevant to a particular job or project. Always be on the lookout for the possibility that your special expertise may be relevant.