How to Boost Creativity and Experience New Territory In Your Writing Career

How to Boost Creativity and Experience New Territory In Your Writing Career

How to Boost Creativity and Experience New Territory In Your Writing Career
Photo by Tim Caynes

How to Boost Creativity and Experience New Territory In Your Writing Career

Are you stuck in the rut of writing based on a specific project goal? Do you need to boost creativity so you can spice up your writing career?

There's no doubt writing with a specific project in mind is efficient and productive, so long as you, yourself, are productive. But when was the last time you just wrote whatever came to you rather than focusing on a specific topic?

Before I go on, let me just say that I have always recommended having a plan and a schedule. I know if I don't have a plan and schedule, I either procrastinate or flounder about and accomplish little. Not only do plans and schedules help us stay on track of our writing goals, but they also give us practice on staying on topic and strengthen the discipline we need to achieve writing success. We don't have to flounder around, wracking our brains for something to write about. We can stay focused because we know that we have a destination in mind, an objective to meet.

So, where is this switch coming from?

The experience I had the other day was enlightening. It made me realize that we can't stay focused on our goals at every second. Yes, we need to stay focused on our goals to achieve writing success, but sometimes we need to break away from structure and take an unbeaten path to new territory so we can expand our imagination and creativity.

This isn't about not playing it safe. It's about allowing yourself to experience something potentially different instead of the same old stuff. (I say "potentially" because breaking away from structure doesn't guarantee your experience will be different.)

So, how do we break away from structure and experience new territory in our writing career?

The other night I sat down to work on my NaNoWriMo novel for a few minutes. But since I didn't have a clear idea of the plot or the main characters (I guess I was under-prepared for November!), I decided to switch gears and focus on writing whatever came out.

And can you guess what happened?

I wrote something that I never would have written had I been focused on a specific project. Usually, my main focus for fiction writing is mysteries and thrillers. But there I was writing the opening scene for what sounded like a young adult "coming of age" story for girls.

Breaking away from structure allows us to see what else we're capable of while we write and to experience something different. When we're stuck in a rut of writing the same old thing, we can get bored with our work. And forcing our writing can lead to stories that lack depth, interest, and passion.

If the words just aren't flowing like they should be, take a step back, set that writing work aside, and just write what comes to you. Is it a story, or is it words for an article? Don't force the words or have a goal in mind. Write what comes to you and see what happens. Just let it happen.

What stories (or information) do you really have inside your mind?

Spend at least ten minutes every day just writing what comes out. Writing something new will help revitalize your writing talents and your muse. You might be surprised by the stories you have in you.

Letting the words flow without forcing them could take you to new territory in your writing career. Are you ready for an adventure?

Jody Calkins
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