If youre an author, youve most likely heard this question: “Whats your category?” Or youve been asked, “What do you write?”
As writers, we tend to find a creative “happy location” and stay inside of three boxes: medium, category, and form. This allows us to discover a consistent voice and target our work toward an extremely particular reader.
The key to preventing complacency and redundant storytelling is to challenge yourself with new, or different, kinds of creativity.
Second, I had to write in a different medium than the typical page. And 3rd, I had to write in a various genre than I generally do. Challenge yourself to write in a various medium. Difficulty: Write a short story in the “opposite” genre of what is typical for you. Thats why David Safford composes adventure stories that you will not be able to put down.
However staying inside these boxes with no deviation can have significant disadvantages that will threaten the quality of your writing, and the delight of writing itself.
Why You Need to Challenge Yourself
One disadvantage is complacency. Write the exact same thing in the very same method for too long, and the work becomes dull, leading to stories that are most likely tiring to check out.
Another downside is a lack of creativity. By remaining inside the lines of medium (what you compose on), form (how poetic your writing is), and genre (what standards your writing follows), your work might be doomed to repeat itself or come down with old clichés.
Much like beginning a new exercise regimen, or adding different lifts or stretches to your program, challenging yourself with brand-new composing jobs will trigger you to grow in valuable and meaningful ways.
My Writing Challenge: Host a Murder
When some pals asked me to write a murder secret dinner party, I took up such a difficulty a number of years ago.
I accepted the difficulty with smarmy arrogance. I had just recently taken part in such a mystery dinner party that my pals bought out of a box, and found the experience frustrating and the “Whodunit?” expose frustratingly complex. I assumed I might do much better.
I was rapidly humbled. Producing a murder mystery supper party is complex. Initially, its not a typical story or book. Because I produced eight characters) told in little portions based on courses in a meal, its actually 8 stories (.
But I didnt stop there. I contributed to the intricacy by putting pieces of evidence in tiny envelopes that were taped to the within each characters pamphlet. I decided to have an incorrect ending, where the very first killer is just a pawn of the real killer, who gets the opportunity to secretly kill off another character prior to dessert!
( When my buddies hosted this, whatever worked out– till the uber-killer decided to knock off a dinner guest who is a great actress, who frightened the heck out of her spouse by pretending to choke to death!).
Challenge and Reward.
Recalling, Im grateful that I took on this innovative challenge since it required me out of my comfortable writers box.
I had to write in a different type than my normal narrative prose. A murder secret supper video game needs to work as both a story and a complicated role-playing video game. The products I wrote– especially the hosts book– handled a number of various voices and styles, consisting of everything from an instruction manual to a sales pitch.
Second, I had to write in a various medium than the typical page. Now I was writing backstory into brochures and little pieces of evidence. Suddenly the story was concealed in an invoice, or a text chain, rather than pages and paragraphs!
And third, I had to compose in a different category than I normally do. Not only was this a murder secret, however I made it campy, calling it The Last Lap of Burt Pabsthardt and setting it in a fictionalized variation of NASCAR. Think CLUE meets Talladega Nights.
By stepping outdoors my comfort zone in all three of these normally reputable areas, I was required to stretch, flex, and grow.
And if you handle your own type of obstacle, I think you will too.
Your Turn: 3 Creative Writing Challenges.
All set to handle the obstacle? Here are three writing challenges that will assist you compose outside the box and become a more powerful, more imaginative writer.
Challenge 1: Write in a different medium.
Think of literary medium as “delivery vehicle.”.
If you write stories, your automobile is the page (printed or web). If you make art, your medium can be oil on canvas, scraps of metal, or bits of food.
How do you change the “delivery vehicle” for your writing?
We take in composing all the time that isnt on the internet or a printed page. We just do not notice.
Believe posters, flyers, and signs. Think infographics and Pinterest pins. Believe greeting cards, video games, decors, and other types of “word art.”.
Believe of the screen and the stage.
When you choose to narrate in a various medium, new innovative muscles are forming.
You begin to see your story in a new, living way.
You likewise start to believe in new methods about your reader. “How will this look?” you believe, which is an odd idea for a literary artist to have.
Its a powerful and different thought to have, and it will stretch your abilities in methods you cant predict.
Difficulty: Take an existing story or chapter youve written and retell it in a brand-new medium, like a play, infographic, or video game.
Obstacle 2: Write in a various literary kind.
Consider literary kind as shape or structure.
This can primarily be narrowed to 2 classifications: Poetry and Prose.
To really challenge yourself, attempt mixing the 2 together in your writing. Inform prosaic stories with poetic minutes. Write poetry that includes areas of prose.
Attempt blending mediums together as you mash kinds, like using found quotations in a poem, or marketing slogans in dialogue.
The goal of this difficulty is to stretch your idea of what “writing a story” is, and pressing any borders that exist in your mind. No matter what side of the prose/poetry aisle you fall on, its tempting to think that the other side is too greatly various to attempt and be successful at.
Dont let this false belief stop you from challenging yourself. Take some creative dangers with type and feel your literary muscles grow.
Challenge: If youre presently writing a narrative, attempt composing it as a poem. Possibly change it into flash fiction or a short-short story if youre currently composing a poem.
Difficulty 3: Write in a various genre.
Think about literary category as a specific “flavor” of story.
Just as we expect “cherry” flavored candy to taste something like a real cherry, readers anticipate “secret” flavored stories to seem like a real mystery. And within that category, or taste, are sub-genres with distinct and unique flavors of their own.
Numerous authors find a category and adhere to it. This is wise, as numerous readers do the same thing and desire authors who will regularly provide excellent stories to read.
However for the sake of your creative development (and individual peace of mind), writing in a different category has many advantages.
First, you add a “taste” to your literary buffet. Prior to you may have been a one-flavor author, and now you have more to provide.
And second, youll find out features of other categories that might serve to make the stories you “usually” compose even better!
Offer a different category a shot, and youll find yourself ending up being a far more flexible and resourceful writer.
Difficulty: Write a short story in the “opposite” category of what is normal for you. Attempt love if you write horror. If you compose sci-fi, try historic fiction.
The Benefits of Growth.
Imagination is a noticeably human muscle. It requires strength and versatility of the mind, body, and soul..
And much like the physical muscles operated in gyms and YMCAs all over, the imagination muscle requires exercise or the risks of atrophy rise. To do that, one should extend beyond the bounds of convenience and familiarity.
Provide one of these writing challenges a try, and enjoy the growth of your creative prowess!
How do you challenge yourself to compose in various or unusual methods? Let us know in the remarks.
Difficulty yourself to write in a different medium. How can you inform a story through a play? An infographic? A grocery list?
You are worthy of a fantastic book. Thats why David Safford composes adventure stories that you wont be able to put down. Read his newest story.
at his website. David is a Language Arts instructor, novelist, blogger, hiker,.
Legend of Zelda fanatic, puzzle-doer, husband, and daddy of 2 amazing kids.
Choose among the 3 writing difficulties from this article, and spend fifteen minutes taking threats and working your creative muscles. When youre done, share your practice in the remarks listed below, and make certain to leave feedback for your fellow authors!