Do you ever think your writing is not good enough?
Well, there is no perfect writer out there. Even the best of the best aren’t 100% perfect; they constantly look for ways to improve their writing skills. That’s why they get editors to edit their errors and improve their writing. That’s the difference!
They were once amateurs who never quit but sought improvement.
There is always room for improvement and growth as a writer, but you have to be intentional about it. The finesse you need to take your writing to the next level won’t happen by chance; you need to constantly take steps to grow and improve your craft.
If you think you can do this by reading, well, you are not wrong but becoming a great writer isn’t attainable by just reading; you need to practice the art of writing. Needless to say, writing is a way to get better at writing. When you write, you practice what you’ve learned through reading, observing, etc. You will also easily identify your weaknesses and strengths and see areas you need to improve.
If you’ve identified your weaknesses and want to improve your craft, these creative writing exercises can loosen you up and help you keep your creative juice flowing. These exercises are fun activities that can help you get through your writer’s block when you feel stuck.
- Choose a random object around you and write an image-only poem: Pick an object and describe it using your senses—what does it taste like? What does it smell like? What does it feel like? This exercise helps you to describe vividly without totally relying on telling. It sharpens your use of imagery and description.
- Write a short story without using adverbs or adjectives: Write a short story of fewer than 500 words and impose these restrictions. It will help you master the use of stronger verbs and reduce excessive descriptions that weaken writing.
- Take a romance short story and rewrite it as a horror: This exercise expands your imagination. It makes you go wild and think of the impossible. Switch genres for a change and turn a love story bizarre, or you can do the opposite. Either way, it’s fun!
- Free write for at least 5 minutes before writing: Consider this a warm-up exercise as a writer, just like athletes do. Loosen up and flex your muscles. Write anything that comes to your mind. For example, you could journal your previous day’s activity or explore a topic you enjoy writing about. Just write anything!
- Pick your oldest write-up and rewrite: You may cringe a little when you pick up the first article you wrote in secondary school or the first article you wrote after deciding to start a career in writing. You may even laugh at the mistakes of your then perfect work. Rewriting an old write-up helps you take note of corrections and analyse your progress so far. You might end up creating a beautiful masterpiece from an old story; who knows? Just have fun!
- Rewrite a story from a different point of view: Changing who is telling a story can give you a completely different character motivation. It broadens your perspective and takes you out of the zone you are used to. When you move out of your comfort zone, new ideas will come, so try this!
- Copy what you read: Now, this is not to say plagiarism is allowed. Let’s just say, when you are reading, you read like a writer by paying attention to how a story is written. So the craft elements—style, structures, figurative language, word choices, etc., that make a story worth reading can be replicated deliberately in your work. This is more like inspirational writing. You can pick an author you love and replicate their writing style with No Plagiarism.
- Journal your daily activities: Get a notepad or a diary and write down your daily experiences—good or bad. It doesn’t have to be perfect; you don’t need a high level of expertise, and you don’t need an audience or a topic/theme. Just write down what you feel or experience throughout the day. This writing exercise helps to engage your mind daily, and it’s a way to improve your writing skills by writing daily.
Practising any of these exercises may feel challenging at first, which is absolutely normal. However, to unlock new ideas and keep your creative juice flowing, challenge yourself with these exercises, and you will see results.
Don’t be too rigid about it; you don’t need to prep yourself before starting. Pick one and flow. Just have maximum fun while you improve your skills.
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