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21 Top Examples of Creative Writing

By Rofida Khairalla

examples of creative writing

Let’s be practical: anyone can be a writer.

Sure, practicing the skill and perfecting the art takes a certain modicum of natural interest in the profession.

But the thing that so many people can often overlook is that being a “writer” isn’t defined by how much you write.

So many times we can get hung up on trying to write a bestselling novel or groundbreaking book that we can forget that there are so many other types of writing out there.

Take a step back for a moment and think about it this way:

Whether you have a blog, a social media page, or spend all day texting that special someone, there’s probably an inner literary genius inside you waiting to burst out on the page.

Maybe you don’t have the time or the patience to write a novel, and that’s okay. There are plenty of different types of writing out there and you can most likely find one category, or several, that allow you to get your thoughts on paper in a way that works for you.

If you’re curious to know more, or are just interested in trying out a new writing genre, we’ve made it easier for you by compiling a list of the top 21 examples of creative writing.

1. Novel Writing

A novel is probably the most popular example of creative writing out there. When you think “creative writing” an image of Stephen King typing madly at his computer is probably the first thing that pops into your head. And that’s okay. Given that novels have been a popular form of entertainment for centuries, it’s not surprising.  Typically what distinguishes a novel from other forms of writing is that novels are usually works of fiction that are longer in length and follow a set of characters and plot structure.

2. Short Stories

When it comes to examples of imaginative writing, not unlike its longer counterpart, the novel, short stories also follow a set plot and typically feature one character or a selection of characters. However, the thing to keep in mind about short stories is that they typically resolve in fewer than 50 pages.

creative writing examples

3. Flash Fiction

If you’re up for a real challenge, try your hand at some flash fiction . This type is similar to a short story or novel in the sense that it follows some form of a plot. However, flash fiction usually resolves within a few hundred words or less. There are a few kinds of flash fiction that exist: the six word story, the 50 word story, and the hundred word story. Additionally, flash fiction also has another faction known as sudden fiction, which usually tells a full story in about 750 words.

As an example of imaginative writing, the incredible thing about poetry is that there are so many kinds. From narrative to lyrical and even language poetry there’s so many different ways you can express yourself through a poem. You might be especially interested in pursuing poetry if you enjoy word play or experimenting with the musicality behind words.

Although rap is somewhat of a subcategory of poetry, it’s one of the few forms of poetry that can often get over looked in academic classes. However, it’s probably one of the more contemporary types of poetry available while still sticking to many of the classical rules (or tools) of poetry, including rhyme. Also, it’s one of the areas where the best writers are really produced. The reason for that is because rap forces writers to think on their feet in a way that many other genres don’t.

Playwriting is another great writing style to experiment with, especially if you enjoy the idea of seeing your work come to life. Typically, playwriting involves developing a script that both clearly sets the setting, plot, and characters while also minimizing the amount of description used. One of the key elements of a play is that it’s a collaboration of minds, even though they often don’t work together at the same time. Yet the final product, the performance, is always the end result of work done by the playwright as well as the director, actors and even set designers.

7. Scripts (T.V./Movies)

Like traditional plays, movie or T.V. scripts are often the result of collaboration between a team of people including the cast and crew. However, the big difference is that when you’re writing a T.V. or movie script , you’re often working together with the director and the actors as part of the production team.

Not a fiction writer? No problem! You probably have a unique story worth sharing: it’s called your life. Here’s the deal when it comes to memoirs: the biggest thing to remember is that not everything in your life is considered readership-worthy. In fact, most things probably aren’t. But, most likely, there is a unique angle or perspective that you can take when examining your life.

For example, if you have a really distinctive family history and you’re looking into exploring it, that could be a great subject for a memoir. Maybe you have a really interesting job that exposes you to lots of different people and events on a regular basis; you could write a book about your experiences in that field. The key to writing a good memoir is knowing what angle to take on any subject.

9. Non-Fiction Narratives

Of course, a memoir is just a subsection of a category known as the non-fiction narrative. But not all non-fiction narratives are memoirs. Take for example author Tim Hernandez, who wrote the book Mañana means Heaven . Hernandez writes in a style that is inherently descriptive and interesting, despite the fact that the book’s narrative is mostly based on research and interviews.

10. Songs/Lyrics

Another sector of poetry, songs and lyrics are also a great place where you can express your thoughts and emotions not only through words, but also through music. Whether you’re writing a love ballad or a hymn, there are lots of reasons to enjoy working in this genre. While a lot of this genre is relatively unrestrictive in terms of what you can create, it’s a really good idea to get familiar with the basics of song writing. Especially in an era where so much of the music we hear is impacted by technology, the more you know about the art of song writing, the freer you will be to experiment.

11. Speeches

Speech writing is another great way to express yourself and also reach a wider audience. The thing about speeches is that they are both a form of oral and written text, so the key to writing a really good speech is to take into consideration your phrasing, word choice and syntax. More importantly, the way a speech is delivered can really make or break its success. Practice strong enunciation, confident body language and invoking a clear voice.

12. Greeting Cards

You might hear a lot about greeting cards when people talk about how to make easy money as a writer. But the truth is, being a greeting card writer is anything but easy. You have to be able to keep the greeting card expressions short, catchy and, in a lot of cases, funny. However, if you’ve got the chops to try your hand at a few greeting cards, practice writing limericks and other forms of short poetry. More importantly, read lots of greeting cards to get an idea of how the best writers go about creating the really fun cards that you enjoy purchasing.

It used to be that blogs were the place where teenagers could go to express their teenage angst. But nowadays, blogs are also a great place to be if you’re a writer. There are an unlimited amount of topics you can successfully blog on that will garner attention from audiences. You can use your blog as a forum to share your writing or even reflect on current events, the stock market—really anything! The possibilities are endless, but the key is finding a subject and sticking to it. For example, if you decide to start a blog dedicated to rock music, stick to rock music. Avoid long tangents about politics or other unrelated subjects.

14. Feature Journalism

Feature Journalism is a great place to start if you want to get your feet wet if you’re interested in reporting. Why? Because there are a lot more creative aspects to feature journalism compared to news journalism. Feature stories typically allow you more flexibility with the kinds of details you put into the article, as well as more room for creativity in your lede.

15. Column Writing

If you like the idea of journalism but feel you could never be a journalist in light of your strong opinions, column writing is another avenue you can take. The thing about columns is that they’re typically based in ideas and opinions rather than fact. Yet, because columnists are considered experts in their respective fields, their opinion tends to hold more sway with readers.

As part of the non-fiction narrative family, the personal essay, or even the academic essay, has plenty of elements that are creative. Whether you’re writing about personal experiences or a science project, there are lots of opportunities you have to be creative and hook your reader. Even the most mundane reports have the opportunity to become interesting if you know how to present your topic. As with a lot of non-fiction writing, the secret to writing a good essay is all about your framing. When you begin writing, think about explaining the issue in the most engaging way possible. Just because your writing should cut to the chase doesn’t mean that it should be bland, boring or bogged down in technical jargon. Use anecdotes, clear and concise language, and even humor to express your findings.

17. Twitter Stories

With only 140 characters, how can you tell a story? Well, when you use Twitter, that’s exactly what you’re doing. However, a new phenomenon that’s currently taking over the site is a type of flash fiction called Twitterature, where writers tell a full story or write a poem in 140 characters or less.

18. Comic Strips

If you have a knack for writing and drawing, then you might be especially interested in working on a comic strip. Comic strips are harder project to tackle because they require a lot of preplanning before you start writing. Before you begin drafting you need to know the plot and have a strong outline for how the graphics will look.

19. Collaboration

This is typically a writing exercise that writers do with other writers to expand on their creativity. Essentially the way the exercise works is that one writer will start a story and another will finish it. You might be especially familiar with this kind of work if you’ve ever read the work of an author that was completed AFTER their death. However, collaboration is just another way you can bounce ideas off another person. You can also collaborate with other writers for world building , character development and even general brainstorming.

20. Novella

An example of creative writing, a novella is essentially the love child of a short story and a novel. Although the novella does feature a plot, the plot is typically less complicated compared to that of a novel. Usually novellas are about 50 pages.

21. Genre Writing

Another type of writing that fiction writers can do is genre writing. If you think of popular writers like Stephen King, Nora Roberts and James Patterson, then you’re probably familiar with genre writing. Essentially, genre writing is when a writer explores different stories in one particular genre, like romance, fantasy, or mystery. There’s a huge market out there for genre fiction, which makes it definitely worth pursuing if you a have preference for a particular kind of literature.

The important thing to keep in mind as a writer is that experimentation is never a bad idea. If you’re genuinely curious about one or more items on this list, give it a go! Some of the best literary works were created by accident.

What did you think of our list of 21 creative writing examples? Do you have experience in any of these types of creative writing? Do you know of any other creative writing examples? Please tell us more in the comments box below!

21 Top Examples of Creative Writing is an article from Writing Tips Oasis . Copyright © 2014-2017 Writing Tips Oasis All Rights Reserved

As a graduate from the University of Arizona in English and Creative Writing, Rofida Khairalla’s love for classical literature and post-modern fiction extends beyond the realm of books. She has provided her services independently as a freelance writer, and wrote on the news desk for the student-run newspaper, The Daily Wildcat. As an aspiring children’s book author, she’s refined her craft amongst the grand saguaros of the Southwest, and enjoys playing with her German Shepherd on the slopes of Mount Lemmon.

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27 Creative Writing Examples To Spark Your Imagination

With all the types of creative writing to choose from, it’s hard enough to focus on just one or two of your favorites. 

When it comes to writing your own examples, don’t be hard on yourself if you hit a wall.

We’ve all done it.

Sometimes, all you need is a generous supply of well-crafted and inspirational creative writing examples. 

Good thing you’re here!

For starters, let’s get clear on what creative writing is. 

What Is Creative Writing? 

How to start creative writing , 1. novels and novellas, 2. short stories and flash fiction, 3. twitter stories (140 char), 4. poetry or songs/lyrics, 5. scripts for plays, tv shows, and movies, 6. memoirs / autobiographical narratives, 7. speeches, 9. journalism / newspaper articles, 11. last wills and obituaries, 12. dating profiles and wanted ads, 13. greeting cards.

Knowing how to be a creative writer is impossible if you don’t know the purpose of creative writing and all the types of writing included. 

As you’ll see from the categories listed further on, the words “creative writing” contain multitudes: 

  • Novels, novellas, short stories, flash fiction, microfiction, and even nanofiction;
  • Poetry (traditional and free verse); 
  • Screenplays (for theatrical stage performances, TV shows, and movies)
  • Blog posts and feature articles in newspapers and magazines
  • Memoirs and Testimonials
  • Speeches and Essays
  • And more—including dating profiles, obituaries, and letters to the editor. 

Read on to find some helpful examples of many of these types. Make a note of the ones that interest you most. 

Once you have some idea of what you want to write, how do you get started? 

Allow us to suggest some ideas that have worked for many of our readers and us: 

  • Keep a daily journal to record and play with your ideas as they come; 
  • Set aside a specific chunk of time every day (even 5 minutes) just for writing; 
  • Use a timer to help you stick to your daily writing habit ; 
  • You can also set word count goals, if you find that more motivating than time limits; 
  • Read as much as you can of the kind of content you want to write; 
  • Publish your work (on a blog), and get feedback from others. 

Now that you’ve got some ideas on how to begin let’s move on to our list of examples.  

Creative Writing Examples 

Read through the following examples to get ideas for your own writing. Make a note of anything that stands out for you. 

Inspiring novel-writing examples can come from the first paragraph of a well-loved novel (or novella), from the description on the back cover, or from anywhere in the story. 

From Circe by Madeline Miller

““Little by little I began to listen better: to the sap moving in the plants, to the blood in my veins. I learned to understand my own intention, to prune and to add, to feel where the power gathered and speak the right words to draw it to its height. That was the moment I lived for, when it all came clear at last and the spell could sing with its pure note, for me and me alone.”

From The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin: 

“‘I’ll make my report as if I told a story, for I was taught as a child on my homeworld that Truth is a matter of the imagination…. ” 

The shorter your story, the more vital it is for each word to earn its place.  Each sentence or phrase should be be necessary to your story’s message and impact. 

From “A Consumer’s Guide to Shopping with PTSD” by Katherine Robb

“‘“Do you know what she said to me at the condo meeting?” I say to the salesman. She said, “Listen, the political climate is so terrible right now I think we all have PTSD. You’re just the only one making such a big deal about it.”

“The salesman nods his jowly face and says, “That Brenda sounds like a real b***h.”’

From Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri (collection of short stories)

“Something happened when the house was dark. They were able to talk to each other again.” (From ‘A Temporary Matter’)

Use the hashtag #VSS to find a generous sampling of short Twitter stories in 140 or fewer characters. Here are a few examples to get you started: 

From Chris Stocks on January 3rd, 2022 : 

“With the invention of efficient 3D-printable #solar panels & cheap storage batteries, the world was finally able to enjoy the benefits of limitless cheap green energy. Except in the UK. We’re still awaiting the invention of a device to harness the power of light drizzle.” #vss365 (Keyword: solar)

From TinyTalesbyRedsaid1 on January 2nd, 2022 : 

“A solar lamp would safely light our shack. But Mom says it’ll lure thieves. I squint at my homework by candlelight, longing for electricity.” #vss #vss365 #solar

If you’re looking for poetry or song-writing inspiration, you’ll find plenty of free examples online—including the two listed here: 

From “I’m Nobody! Who are you?” by Emily Dickinson

“I’m Nobody! Who are you?

Are you – Nobody – too?

Then there’s a pair of us!

Don’t tell! they’d advertise – you know!

“How dreary – to be – Somebody!

How public – like a Frog –

To tell one’s name – the livelong June –

To an admiring Bog!

From “Enemy” by Imagine Dragons

“I wake up to the sounds

Of the silence that allows

For my mind to run around

With my ear up to the ground

I’m searching to behold

The stories that are told

When my back is to the world

That was smiling when I turned

Tell you you’re the greatest

But once you turn they hate us….” 

If you enjoy writing dialogue and setting a scene, check out the following excerpts from two very different screenplays. Then jot down some notes for a screenplay (or scene) of your own.

From Mean Girls by Tina Fey (Based on the book, Queen Bees and Wannabes” by Rosalind Wiseman

“Karen: ‘So, if you’re from Africa, why are you white?’

“Gretchen: ‘Oh my god, Karen! You can’t just ask people why they’re white!’

“Regina: ‘Cady, could you give us some privacy for, like, one second?’

“Cady: ‘Sure.’

Cady makes eye contact with Janis and Damien as the Plastics confer.

“Regina (breaking huddle): ‘Okay, let me just say that we don’t do this a lot, so you should know that this is, like, a huge deal.’

“Gretchen: ‘We want to invite you to have lunch with us every day for the rest of the week.’ 

“Cady: ‘Oh, okay…’ 

“Gretchen: Great. So, we’ll see you tomorrow.’

“Karen: ‘On Tuesdays, we wear pink.’” 

#10: From The Matrix by Larry and Andy Wachowski

“NEO: ‘That was you on my computer?’

“NEO: ‘How did you do that?’

“TRINITY: ‘Right now, all I can tell you, is that you are in danger. I brought you here to warn you.’

“NEO: ‘Of what?’

“TRINITY: ‘They’re watching you, Neo.’

“NEO: ‘Who is?’

“TRINITY: ‘Please. Just listen. I know why you’re here, Neo. I know what you’ve been doing. I know why you hardly sleep, why you live alone and why, night after night, you sit at your computer. You’re looking for him.’

“Her body is against his; her lips very close to his ear.

“TRINITY: ‘I know because I was once looking for the same thing, but when he found me he told me I wasn’t really looking for him. I was looking for an answer.’

“There is a hypnotic quality to her voice and Neo feels the words, like a drug, seeping into him.

“TRINITY: ‘It’s the question that drives us, the question that brought you here. You know the question just as I did.’

“NEO: ‘What is the Matrix?’

Sharing stories from your life can be both cathartic for you and inspiring or instructive (or at least entertaining) for your readers. 

From The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

“It was in fact the ordinary nature of everything preceding the event that prevented me from truly believing it had happened, absorbing it, incorporating it, getting past it. I recognize now that there was nothing unusual in this: confronted with sudden disaster, we all focus on how unremarkable the circumstances were in which the unthinkable occurred: the clear blue sky from which the plane fell, the routine errand that ended on the shoulder with the car in flames, the swings where the children were playing as usual when the rattlesnake struck from the ivy. ‘He was on his way home from work—happy, successful, healthy—and then, gone,’ I read in the account of the psychiatric nurse whose husband was killed in a highway accident… ” 

From Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt: 

“When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I managed to survive at all. It was, of course, a miserable childhood: the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood.”

From Call the Midwife: A True Story of the East End in the 1950s by Jennifer Worth: 

“Nonnatus House was situated in the heart of the London Docklands… The area was densely-populated and most families had lived there for generations, often not moving more than a street or two away from their birthplace. Family life was lived at close-quarters and children were brought up by a widely-extended family of aunts, grandparents, cousins, and older siblings. 

The purpose of most speeches is to inform, inspire, or persuade. Think of the last time you gave a speech of your own. How did you hook your listeners? 

From “Is Technology Making Us Smarter or Dumber?” by Rob Clowes (Persuasive)

“It is possible to imagine that human nature, the human intellect, emotions and feelings are completely independent of our technologies; that we are essentially ahistorical beings with one constant human nature that has remained the same throughout history or even pre-history? Sometimes evolutionary psychologists—those who believe human nature was fixed on the Pleistocene Savannah—talk this way. I think this is demonstrably wrong…. “

From “Make Good Art” by Neil Gaiman (Keynote Address for the University of Fine Arts, 2012):

“…First of all: When you start out on a career in the arts you have no idea what you are doing.”

“This is great. People who know what they are doing know the rules, and know what is possible and impossible. You do not. And you should not. The rules on what is possible and impossible in the arts were made by people who had not tested the bounds of the possible by going beyond them. And you can.”

“If you don’t know it’s impossible it’s easier to do. And because nobody’s done it before, they haven’t made up rules to stop anyone doing that again, yet.” 

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From “The Danger of a Single Story” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (TEDGlobal)

“…I come from a conventional, middle-class Nigerian family. My father was a professor. My mother was an administrator. And so we had, as was the norm, live-in domestic help, who would often come from nearby rural villages. So, the year I turned eight, we got a new house boy. His name was Fide. The only thing my mother told us about him was that his family was very poor. My mother sent yams and rice, and our old clothes, to his family. And when I didn’t finish my dinner, my mother would say, “Finish your food! Don’t you know? People like Fide’s family have nothing.” So I felt enormous pity for Fide’s family.

“Then one Saturday, we went to his village to visit, and his mother showed us a beautifully patterned basket made of dyed raffia that his brother had made. I was startled. It had not occurred to me that anybody in his family could actually make something. All I had heard about them was how poor they were, so that it had become impossible for me to see them as anything else but poor. Their poverty was my single story of them.” 

Essays are about arguing a particular point of view and presenting credible support for it. Think about an issue that excites or angers you. What could you write to make your case for a specific argument? 

From “On Rules of Writing,” by Ursula K. Le Guin:

“Thanks to ‘show don’t tell,’ I find writers in my workshops who think exposition is wicked. They’re afraid to describe the world they’ve invented. (I make them read the first chapter of The Return of the Native , a description of a landscape, in which absolutely nothing happens until in the last paragraph a man is seen, from far away, walking along a road. If that won’t cure them nothing will.)” 

From “Fairy Tale is Form, Form is Fairy Tale ” by Kate Bernheimer (from The Writer’s Notebook) : 

“‘The pleasure of fairy tales,’ writes Swiss scholar Max Lüthi, ‘resides in their form.’ I find myself more and more devoted to the pleasure derived from form generally, and from the form of fairy tales specifically, and so I am eager to share what fairy-tale techniques have done for my writing and what they can do for yours. Fairy tales offer a path to rapture—the rapture of form—where the reader or writer finds a blissful and terrible home….  “

Picture yourself as a seasoned journalist brimming with ideas for your next piece. Or think of an article you’ve read that left you thinking, “Wow, they really went all out!” The following examples can inspire you to create front-page-worthy content of your own.

From “The Deadliest Jobs in America” by Christopher Cannon, Alex McIntyre and Adam Pearce (Bloomberg: May 13, 2015):

“The U.S. Department of Labor tracks how many people die at work, and why. The latest numbers were released in April and cover the last seven years through 2013. Some of the results may surprise you…. “

From “The Hunted” by Jeffrey Goldberg ( The Atlantic: March 29, 2010)

“… poachers continued to infiltrate the park, and to the Owenses they seemed more dangerous than ever. Word reached them that one band of commercial poachers had targeted them for assassination, blaming them for ruining their business. These threats—and the shooting of an elephant near their camp—provoked Mark to intensify his antipoaching activities. For some time, he had made regular night flights over the park, in search of meat-drying racks and the campfires of poachers; he would fly low, intentionally backfiring the plane and frightening away the hunters. Now he decided to escalate his efforts….. “

It doesn’t have to cost a thing to start a blog if you enjoy sharing your stories, ideas, and unique perspective with an online audience. What inspiration can you draw from the following examples?

#21: “How to Quit Your Job, Move to Paradise, and Get Paid to Change the World” by Jon Morrow of Smart Blogger (Problogger.com):

“After all, that’s the dream, right?

“Forget the mansions and limousines and other trappings of Hollywood-style wealth. Sure, it would be nice, but for the most part, we bloggers are simpler souls with much kinder dreams.

“We want to quit our jobs, spend more time with our families, and finally have time to write. We want the freedom to work when we want, where we want. We want our writing to help people, to inspire them, to change them from the inside out.

“It’s a modest dream, a dream that deserves to come true, and yet a part of you might be wondering…

“Will it?…. “

From “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck” (blog post) by Mark Manson :

Headline: “Most of us struggle throughout our lives by giving too many f*cks in situations where f*cks do not deserve to be given.”

“In my life, I have given a f*ck about many people and many things. I have also not given a f*ck about many people and many things. And those f*cks I have not given have made all the difference…. “

Whether you’re writing a tribute for a deceased celebrity or loved one, or you’re writing your own last will and testament, the following examples can help get you started. 

From an obituary for the actress Betty White (1922-2021) on Legacy.com: 

“Betty White was a beloved American actress who starred in “The Golden Girls” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.”

“Died: Friday, December 31, 2021

“Details of death: Died at her home in Los Angeles at the age of 99.

“A television fixture once known as the First Lady of Game Shows, White was blessed with a career that just wouldn’t quit — indeed, her fame only seemed to grow as she entered her 80s and 90s. By the time of her death, she was considered a national treasure, one of the best-loved and most trusted celebrities in Hollywood…. “ 

From a last will and testament using a template provided by LegalZoom.com : 

“I, Petra Schade, a resident of Minnesota in Sherburne County — being of sound mind and memory — do hereby make, publish, and declare this to be my last will and testament…

“At the time of executing this will, I am married to Kristopher Schade. The names of my (and Kristopher’s) four children are listed below…

“I hereby express my intent not to be buried in a cemetery. I ask that my remains be cremated and then scattered at the base of a tree.

“None will have any obligation to visit my remains or leave any kind of marker. I ask that my husband honor this request more than any supposed obligation to honor my corpse with a funeral or with any kind of religious ceremony.

“I ask, too, that my children honor me by taking advantage of opportunities to grow and nurture trees in their area and (if they like) beyond, without spending more than their household budgets can support…. “

Dating profiles and wanted ads are another fun way to flex your creative writing muscles. Imagine you or a friend is getting set up on a dating app. Or pretend you’re looking for a job, a roommate, or something else that could (potentially) make your life better. 

Example of dating profile: 

Headline: “Female 49-year-old writer/coder looking for good company”

“Just moved to the Twin Cities metro area, and with my job keeping me busy most of the time, I haven’t gotten out much and would like to meet a friend (and possibly more) who knows their way around and is great to talk to. I don’t have pets (though I like animals) — or allergies. And with my work schedule, I need to be home by 10 pm at the latest. That said, I’d like to get better acquainted with the area — with someone who can make the time spent exploring it even more rewarding.”  

Example of a wanted ad for a housekeeper: 

“Divorced mother of four (living with three of them half the time) is looking for a housekeeper who can tidy up my apartment (including the two bathrooms) once a week. Pay is $20 an hour, not including tips, for three hours a week on Friday mornings from 9 am to 12 pm. Please call or text me at ###-###-#### and let me know when we could meet to discuss the job.”

These come in so many different varieties, we won’t attempt to list them here, but we will provide one upbeat example. Use it as inspiration for a birthday message for someone you know—or to write yourself the kind of message you’d love to receive. 

Happy 50th Birthday card:  

“Happy Birthday, and congratulations on turning 50! I remember you telling me your 40s were better than your 30s, which were better than your 20s. Here’s to the best decade yet! I have no doubt you’ll make it memorable and cross some things off your bucket list before your 51st.

“You inspire and challenge me to keep learning, to work on my relationships, and to try new things. There’s no one I’d rather call my best friend on earth.” 

Now that you’ve looked through all 27 creative writing examples, which ones most closely resemble the kind of writing you enjoy? 

By that, we mean, do you enjoy both reading and creating it? Or do you save some types of creative writing just for reading—and different types for your own writing? You’re allowed to mix and match. Some types of creative writing provide inspiration for others. 

What kind of writing will you make time for today? 

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8 Creative Writing Examples That Will Spark Your Writing Genius

8 Creative Writing Examples That Will Spark Your Writing Genius

Jane Ng • 15 Nov 2023 • 6 min read

Looking for some creative writing examples to ignite your imagination? You’ve come to the right place! Whether you’re an aspiring writer searching for inspiration, or a student aiming to enhance your creative writing skills, we’ve got you covered. In this blog post, we’ll provide creative writing examples, explore different styles, and techniques, and showcase some truly inspiring pieces. 

So, let’s begin our adventure into the world of creativity and expression.

Table Of Contents

What is creative writing.

  • Types of Creative Writing Styles

Key Takeaways

  • FAQs About Creative Writing Examples

More Tips with AhaSlides

  • Six Thinking Hats
  • What is Systems Thinking?

Looking for Creative Presentations?

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Creative writing is the art of using words to express thoughts, ideas, and emotions in imaginative and unique ways. It’s a writing form that goes beyond the technical and conventional aspects of writing like grammar and structure, focusing instead on capturing the essence of storytelling and personal expression.

In creative writing, writers have the freedom to invent characters, settings, and plots, allowing their creativity to flow without the constraints of strict rules or guidelines. This form of writing can take various forms, including short stories, poetry, novels, plays, and more which we’ll explore in the next section.

examples of creative writing

Types Of Creative Writing Styles

Creative writing encompasses a variety of styles, each with its unique characteristics and purposes. Here are some common types of creative writing styles:

  • Fiction: Storytelling with invented characters, plots, and settings across genres like mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, flash fiction and literary fiction.
  • Poetry: Expressive writing using rhyme, meter, and figurative language to convey emotions and imagery, including forms like sonnets, haikus, and free verse.
  • Drama/Playwriting: Crafting scripts for theatrical performances, incorporating dialogue, stage directions, and character development for stage productions.
  • Creative Nonfiction: Merging facts with narrative storytelling techniques to create engaging personal essays, memoirs, and travel writing.
  • Screenwriting: Developing scripts for movies and television, adhering to a specific format, and including scenes, dialogues, and camera directions.
  • Short Stories: Concise narratives exploring single themes with well-developed characters and plots within a limited word count.
  • Blogging: Creating conversational and relatable content, combining personal experiences, opinions, and information, covering a wide range of topics and formats.
  • Songwriting: Crafting lyrics and melodies to convey emotions and stories through music, blending language with melody in a unique creative form.

1/ Flash Fiction – Short Creative Writing Examples:

Ernest Hemingway’s Six-Word Story:

“ For sale: baby shoes, never worn. “

This poignant six-word story is often attributed to Hemingway, although its true authorship is debated. Regardless, it showcases the power of flash fiction to convey a complete narrative with just a handful of words. In this case, it tells a heartbreaking story of loss and unfulfilled hopes in a remarkably concise manner.

2/ GCSE Creative Writing Examples:

Here’s a GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) creative writing example. GCSE creative writing tasks often require students to demonstrate their ability to craft engaging narratives.

Task: The Unexpected Visitor

“Imagine you are at home alone on a rainy evening. Your parents are out, and you’re engrossed in a book. Suddenly, there’s a knock at the door. You weren’t expecting anyone, and the hour is late. Write a short story (around 300-400 words) about what happens next.”

3/ Haiku Poetry – Creative Writing Examples:

Haikus are a traditional form of Japanese poetry known for their brevity and focus on nature and the changing seasons. Each haiku typically consists of three lines with a syllable pattern of 5-7-5, making them a concise yet evocative form of creative expression.

Matsuo Basho (1644-1694):

“An old silent pond…

A frog jumps into the pond—

Splash! Silence again.”

5 examples of creative writing

4/ Screen Writing – Creative Writing Examples:

Screenwriting is a unique form of creative writing that brings stories to life on big and small screens. Here are a few famous examples of screenwriting from iconic films and TV series:

1/ Movie – “Get Out” (2017) Script – Written by Jordan Peele:

Jordan Peele’s screenplay combines horror and social commentary, making “Get Out” a thought-provoking and chilling cinematic experience.

2/ TV Series – “Breaking Bad” (2008-2013) – Created by Vince Gilligan:

Vince Gilligan’s screenplay for “Breaking Bad” masterfully portrays the transformation of a high school chemistry teacher, Walter White, into a drug lord. The series is celebrated for its character development and moral ambiguity.

5/ Playwriting – Creative Writing Examples:

These plays represent a diverse range of styles and themes within the world of playwriting. They have had a significant impact on the theater and continue to be performed and studied worldwide.

1/ “Romeo and Juliet” by William Shakespeare:

This timeless tragedy explores themes of love and conflict between the Montagues and the Capulets. It’s one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays, known for its poetic language and unforgettable characters.

2/ “Death of a Salesman” by Arthur Miller:

Arthur Miller’s classic play delves into the American Dream and the disillusionment of a traveling salesman named Willy Loman. It’s celebrated for its exploration of the human condition and the pursuit of success.

styles of writing examples

6/ Personal Essay – Creative Writing Examples:

Personal essay examples showcase how writers can draw from their own life experiences to create engaging narratives that resonate with readers.

1/ “A Journey to Self-Discovery”

In this personal essay, the author reflects on a transformative backpacking trip through the mountains. They recount the physical and emotional challenges faced during the journey and how these challenges ultimately led to profound self-discovery and growth. The essay explores themes of resilience, introspection, and the power of nature to inspire personal change.

2/ “Lessons from My Grandmother’s Kitchen”

This personal essay takes readers into the author’s childhood memories of spending time with their grandmother in the kitchen. Through vivid descriptions of cooking rituals and family gatherings, the author reflects on the valuable life lessons and cultural heritage passed down through generations. The essay touches on themes of family, tradition, and the importance of preserving cultural identity.

7/ Blogging – Creative Writing Examples:

Here are a few famous examples of blogs known for their creative and engaging writing styles:

1/ Wait But Why by Tim Urban:

Wait But Why is known for its in-depth articles and entertaining infographics that explore a wide range of topics, from science and technology to philosophy and human behavior.

2/ Cup of Jo by Joanna Goddard:

Cup of Jo is a lifestyle blog that features thoughtful and relatable content on relationships, parenting, travel, and more. Joanna Goddard’s writing style is warm and inviting.

8/ Songwriting – Creative Writing Examples:

Here are three famous examples of songwriting known for their creative and impactful lyrics:

1/ “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen:

Queen’s epic and operatic “Bohemian Rhapsody” features intricate lyrics that tell a complex narrative and create a timeless rock masterpiece.

2/ “Yesterday” by The Beatles:

“Yesterday” by The Beatles is a classic ballad with introspective lyrics that explore themes of nostalgia and lost love.

3/ “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye:

Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” is a socially conscious song with lyrics that address issues like war, racism, and environmental concerns.

5 examples of creative writing

Through the power of words, writers can transport readers to distant worlds, evoke deep emotions, and share profound insights. Throughout this exploration of creative writing examples, we’ve witnessed the diverse tapestry of possibilities, from captivating personal essays to timeless poetry, from gripping screenplays to enchanting song lyrics.

Whether you’re a seasoned writer or just starting your creative journey, the key lies in unlocking your imagination and letting your ideas flow freely. So don’t forget that AhaSlides provides a dynamic platform for creative writing, offering interactive features that can enhance your storytelling. Whether you’re crafting a captivating presentation, conducting a workshop, or seeking feedback on your work, AhaSlides empowers you to engage with your audience in new and exciting ways.

FAQs About Creative Writing Examples

What is a good example of creative writing.

One famous example of creative writing is the opening paragraph of Charles Dickens’ novel “ A Tale of Two Cities “: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”

Is a verse example of creative writing?

Yes, a verse can be a good example of creative writing. Creative writing encompasses a wide range of forms and styles, and poetry or verse is certainly one of them.

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Creative Writing: 8 Fun Ways to Get Started

Creative writing is a written art form that uses the imagination to tell stories and compose essays, poetry, screenplays, novels, lyrics, and more. It can be defined in opposition to the dry and factual types of writing found in academic, technical, or journalistic texts.

Characterized by its ability to evoke emotion and engage readers, creative writing can tackle themes and ideas that one might struggle to discuss in cold, factual terms.

If you’re interested in the world of creative writing, we have eight fantastic exercises and activities to get you started.

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1. Use writing prompts every week

Illustration of a writer getting ready for a creative writing contest

Coming up with ideas for short stories can be challenging, which is why we created a directory of 1700+ creative writing prompts covering a wide range of genres and topics. Writing prompts are flexible in nature, they are meant to inspire you without being too constrictive. Overall, they are a great way to keep your creative muscles limber.

Example of Reedsy's Creative Writing Prompts

If you’re struggling for motivation, how does a hard deadline and a little prize money sound? Prompts-based writing contests are a fantastic way to dive into creative writing: the combination of due dates, friendly rivalries, prize money, and the potential to have your work published is often just what’s needed to propel you over the finish line. 

We run a weekly writing contest over on Reedsy Prompts, where hundreds of writers from all around the world challenge themselves weekly to write a short story between 1,000 and 3,000 words for a chance to win the $250 prize. Furthermore, the community is very active in providing constructive feedback, support, and accountability to each other 一 something that will make your efforts even more worthwhile.

Take a peek at our directory of writing contests which features some of the most prestigious open writing competitions in the world. 

2. Start journaling your days

Illustration of a writer journaling in autumn

Another easy way to get started with creative writing is to keep a journal. We’re not talking about an hour-by-hour account of your day, but journaling as a way to express yourself without filters and find your ‘voice in writing’. If you’re unsure what to journal about, think of any daily experiences that have had an impact on you, such as… 

Special moments . Did you lock yourself out of your house? Or did you catch a beautiful sunset on your way back from groceries? Capture those moments, and how you felt about them.

People . Did you have an unusual exchange with a stranger at the bar? Or did you reconnect with someone you haven’t seen in years? Share your thoughts about it.

World events . Is there something happening in the world right now that is triggering you? That’s understandable. You can reflect on it (and let some steam off) while journaling.

Memories . Did you go down memory lane after a glass of wine? Great, honor those memories by trying to recollect them in detail on paper so that they will always stay vivid in your mind.

Life decisions . Are you having an existential crisis about what to do with your life? Write down your thought process, and the pros and cons of the possible decisions in front of you. You’ll be surprised to discover that, not only is it a great creative writing exercise, but it can also actually help you sort your life out! 

If you struggle to write consistently, sign up for our How to Write a Novel course to finish a novel in just 3 months.  

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3. Create an anonymous social media account

Illustration of a writer thinking

Like anonymous blogging, an incognito Twitter account sidesteps the pressure that comes with attaching your name to your work. Anonymously putting tiny stories out into the ether gives you the freedom to create without worrying about the consequences — which is great, so long as you don’t use it as an opportunity to troll people or spread conspiracy theories. 

You could use the anonymous account in different ways. For example, you could…

  • Tweet from unique points of view (e.g. a dog observing human behavior );
  • Create a parody account of real or fictional people (e.g. an English poet from the Middle Ages );
  • Challenge yourself to write tiny flash fiction stories that fit into Twitter threads.

Just remember, you’re not doing this to fool anyone into thinking that your account is real: be a good citizen and mark yourself a fiction account in your bio. 

How to Start Creative Writing | Screenshot of a tweet by the Twitter account

But if you’re not really a social media kinda person, you may enjoy our next tip, which is a bit more on the analog side.

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4. Find an old photo and tell its story

Illustration of a photo-inspired journaling exercise

Find a random old photo — maybe on the web, maybe from a photo album in a yard sale — and see what catches your attention. Look closely at it and try to imagine the story behind it. What was happening? Who are the people in it and how are they really feeling? Do they share a relationship, and of what kind? What are their goals and dreams?

In other words, bring the photo to life with your imagination. Don't be afraid to take artistic license with your story, as the goal is to be creative and have fun while writing. 

How do you know it’s creative writing?

Creative Writing | info card listing 5 headers below

5. Create a character from a random name

Illustration of a young poet and a warrior back to back

Just as our universe started from a few simple elements, you can create a character from a few basic information, like their name, culture, and gender. Reedsy’s handy character name generator can help you with that, offering random names based on archetypes, Medieval roots, fantasy traits and more. A few examples? A Celtic heroine named Fíona O'Keefe, a hero’s sidekick named Aderine, or a Korean track star named Park Kang-Dae.

Once you've chosen their name, begin to develop their personality. Set a timer for 5–10 minutes and write anything that comes to mind about them. It could be a page from their FBI dossier, a childhood diary entry, or simply a scene about them boiling an egg.

Just ‘go with the flow’ and don’t stop writing until your time is up. Repeat the process a few times to further hone the personality. If you like what you end up with, you can always go deeper later with our character profile template . 

If a stream-of-consciousness exercise is not your thing, you can try to imagine your character in a specific situation and write down how’d they respond to it. For example, what if they were betrayed by a friend? Or if they were elected in power? To help you imagine situations to put your character in, we made a free template that you can download below. 

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Reedsy’s Character Questionnaire

40 questions to help you develop memorable characters.

6. Construct a character by people-watching

A writer observing a person and taking notes

People watching is “the action of spending time idly observing people in a public place.” In a non-creepy way, ideally. Sit on a bench on a public square or on a road-side table at your favorite café, and start observing the people around you. Pay attention to any interesting quirks or behaviors, and write it down. Then put on your detective’s hat and try to figure out what that tells you about them.

For example, the man at the table next to you at the restaurant is reading the newspaper. His jacket and hat are neatly arranged next to him. The pages make a whipping sound as he briskly turns them, and he grimaces every time he reads a new article. Try to imagine what he’s reading, and why he’s reacting the way he is. Then, try to build a character with the information you have. It’s a fun creative exercise that will also, hopefully, help you better empathize with strangers. 

7. “Map” something you feel strongly about into a new context

Illustration of a young romance writer

Placing your feelings into new contexts can be a powerful creative writing exercise. The idea is to start from something you feel strongly about, and frame it into a completely different context. 

For example, suppose your heart is torn apart after you divorce your life-long partner: instead of journaling or writing a novel about it, you could tell a story about a legendary trapeze duo whose partnership has come to an end. If you’re struggling with politicking and petty power dynamics at the office: what if you “mapped” your feelings onto an ant who resents being part of a colony? Directing your frustration at a queen ant can be a fun and cathartic writing experience (that won’t get you in trouble if your co-workers end up reading your story).   

8. Capture the moment with a haiku

Illustration of a haiku poet inspired by the four seasons

Haikus are poems from the Japanese tradition that aim to capture, in a few words, daily moments of insight (usually inspired by nature). In a nutshell, it’s about becoming mindful of your surroundings, and notice if you can see something in a new or deeper way 一 then use contrasting imagery to express whatever you noticed. 

Here’s an example:

Bright orange bicycle

Speeding through the autumn leaves

A burst of color waves

It may sound a bit complicated, but it shouldn’t be 一 at least not for the purpose of this exercise. Learn the basics of haiku-writing , then challenge yourself to write one per day for a week or month. At the end, you’ll be able to look back at your collection of poems and 一 in the worst case scenario 一 revisit small but significant moments that you would have otherwise forgot about.   

Creative writing can be any writing you put your heart and soul into. It could be made for the purpose of expressing your feelings, exploring an idea, or simply entertaining your readers. As you can see there’s many paths to get involved with it, and hundreds of exercises you can use as a starting point. In the next post, we’ll look more in detail at some creative writing examples from some fellow authors. 

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Home › Study Tips › Creative Writing Resources For Secondary School Students

Creative Writing Examples: 9 Types Of Creative Writing

5 examples of creative writing

Table of Contents

Creative writing takes a lot of brainpower. You want to improve your creative writing skills, but you feel stuck. And nothing’s worse than feeling dry and wrung out of ideas! 

But don’t worry. When our creative writing summer school students feel they’re in a rut, they expand their horizons. Because sometimes, all you need is to try something new . 

And this article will give you a glimpse into what you need to thrive at creative writing.

Here you’ll find creative writing examples to help give you the creative boost you’re looking for. Are you dreaming of writing a novel but can’t quite get there yet? 

No worries! Maybe you’d want to try your hand writing short stories first, or maybe flash fiction. You’ll know more about these in the coming sections.

9 Scintillating Creative Writing Examples

Let’s go through the 9 examples of creative writing and some of their famous pieces penned under each type.

There is hardly a 21st-century teenager who hasn’t laid their hands on a novel or two. A novel is one of the most well-loved examples of creative writing.

It’s a fictional story in prose form found in various genres, including romance, horror, Sci-Fi, Fantasy and contemporary. Novels revolve around characters whose perspectives in life change as they grow through the story. They contain an average of 50,000 to 70,000 words. 

Here are some of the most famous novels:

  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling
  • The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
  • Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

2. Flash Fiction

Flash Fiction is similar to a novel in that it offers plot development and characters. But unlike novels, it’s less than 1000 words. Some even contain fewer than 100 words! Legend has it that the shortest story ever told was Ernest Hemmingway’s six-word story, which goes like this, “For Sale: Baby shoes, never worn.”

Do you know that there are sub-categories of Flash Fiction? There’s the “Sudden Fiction” with a maximum of 750 words. “Microfiction” has 100 words at most. And the “six-word story” contains a single-digit word count. 

Remarkable Flash Fiction include: 

  • The Long and Short of It by Michael A. Arnzen
  • Chapter V Ernest Hemingway
  • Gasp by Michael A. Arnzen
  • Angels and Blueberries by Tara Campbell
  • Curriculum by Sejal Shah

3. Short Story

What’s shorter than a novel but longer than flash fiction? Short story. It’s a brief work of fiction that contains anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 words. Whereas a novel includes a complex plot, often with several characters interacting with each other, a short story focuses on a single significant event or mood. It also has fewer characters. 

The best short stories are memorable and evoke strong emotions. They also contain a twist or some type of unexpected resolution.

Check out these famous short stories:

  • The Lottery by Shirley Jackson
  • The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe
  • The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry
  • The Sniper by Liam OFlaherty
  • A Good Man is Hard to Find by Flannery O’Connor

4. Personal Essay

In a personal essay, you write about your personal experience. What lesson did the experience teach you? And how does it relate to the overarching theme of the essay? Themes can be about anything! From philosophical questions, political realizations, historical discussions, you name it.

Since writing a personal essay involves talking about actual personal events, it’s often called “autobiographical nonfiction.” Its tone is informal and conversational.

Have you observed that applications at universities and companies usually involve submitting personal essays? That’s because having the capability to write clear essays displays your communication and critical thinking skills.

Some of the most famous personal essays include:

  • Self-Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Once More To The Lake by E.B. White
  • What I Think and Feel at 25 by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Ticket to the Fair by David Foster Wallace

Memoirs and personal essays are autobiographical. But while you use your experiences in a personal essay to share your thoughts about a given theme, a memoir focuses on your life story. What past events do you want to share? And how has your life changed?

In a word, a memoir is all about self-exploration. 

Here are among the most famous memoirs:

  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
  • West with the Night by Beryl Markham
  • Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant by Ulysses Grant
  • Night By Elie Wiesel
  • A Long Way Gone By Ishmael Beah

6. Poetry 

Poetry is one of the oldest examples and types of creative writing . Did you know that the oldest poem in the world is the Epic of Gilgamesh, which is known to be 4,000 years old? Poetry is a type of literature that uses aesthetic and rhythmic qualities of language—such as sound, imagery, and metaphor—to evoke meaning. 

There are 5 types of rhythmic feet common in poetry: trochee, anapest, dactyl, iamb, and anapest.

The most beloved poems include:

  • No Man Is An Island by John Donne
  • Still I Rise by Maya Angelou
  • Ode to a Nightingale by John Keats
  • If You Forget Me by Pablo Neruda
  • Fire And Ice by Robert Frost

7. Script (Screenplay)

A script is a type of creative writing (a.k.a. screenwriting) that contains instructions for movies. Instructions indicate the characters’ movements, expressions, and dialogues. In essence, the writer is giving a visual representation of the story.

When a novel says , “Lucy aches for the love she lost,” a script must show . What is the actress of Lucy doing? How can she portray that she is aching for her lost love? All these must be included in screenwriting.

The following are some of the most brilliant scripts:

  • Citizen Kane by Herman J. Mankiewicz and Orson Welles
  • The Godfather by Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola
  • Pulp Fiction by Quentin Tarantino
  • The Silence of the Lambs by Ted Tally
  • Taxi Driver by Paul Schrader

8. Play (Stageplay) 

If screenplay is for movies, stageplay is for live theatre. Here’s another distinction. A screenplay tells a story through pictures and dialogues, whereas a stageplay relies on the actors’ performances to bring the story to life.

That’s why dialogue is THE centre of live performance. A play doesn’t have the benefit of using camera angles and special effects to “show, don’t tell.”

Some of the most renowned plays are:

  • Hamlet by William Shakespeare
  • The Crucible by Arthur Miller
  • A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams
  • Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
  • The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

What was the best speech you heard that moved you to action? Speeches are among the most powerful examples of creative writing. It’s meant to stir the audience and persuade them to think and feel as you do about a particular topic.

When you write a speech, you intend to present it orally. So not only do you have to consider the words you choose and the phrasing. But you also have to think about how you’ll deliver it.

Will the sentences flow smoothly onto each other so as to roll off the tongue? Do the words give you the confidence and conviction you need to express your thoughts and beliefs?

Here are some of the most stirring speeches in history:

  • I Have A Dream by Martin Luther King Jr.
  • The Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln
  • First Inaugural Address by Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • I Choose To Live by Sabine Herold
  • Address to the Nation on the Challenger by Ronald Reagan

What Are The Elements of Creative Writing?

You’re now familiar with the various examples of creative writing. Notice how creative writing examples fall under different categories. Can you guess what they are? That’s right! Poetry and Prose .

The Prose section can be broken down further into Prose Fiction and Prose Nonfiction.

Where do the Elements of Creative Writing come in? For Prose fiction . If there’s one word that can describe all forms of prose fiction, it’s STORY. So what are the Elements of a Story (Creative Writing?)

The character is a being (person, animal, thing) through which the reader experiences the story. They speak, act, and interact with the environment and other characters.

  • Elizabeth Bennet in Pride & Prejudice
  • Simba in Lion King
  • Woody in Toy Story

The two most essential types of characters are the Protagonist and Antagonist. Who is the Protagonist? They’re the main character, and the story revolves around them. Elizabeth, Simba, and Woody are the protagonists in their stories. 

And who is the Antagonist? The one who causes conflict for the protagonist.

The setting answers the question, “when and where does the story set place?” It’s the story’s time and location. Providing context that helps the reader visualise the events in clearer detail. 

What is the Plot? It’s the sequence of events in the story. If you break it down, the plot looks like this:

Exposition – you can also call this the introduction. Where you first catch a glimpse of the characters and setting. In the Lion King (Part 1), this is where Simba is introduced to all the animals on top of Pride Rock as the future King. 

Rising Action – the story gets complicated. The tension builds, and you see the conflict arise. It’s a time of crisis for the main characters. So what’s the Rising Action for Lion King? It would be when Simba’s uncle Scar murders his father and tells him to “Run away and NEVER return.” 

Climax – you’re at the edge of your seat as the story reaches its crescendo. The most defining (and intense) moment arrives when the protagonist faces the conflict (enemy/challenge) head-on. Simba finally goes back to Pride Rock to confront his wicked uncle Scar. And an epic fight begins. Simba even almost falls off a cliff! *gasp

Falling Action – here you catch your breath as the story starts to calm down. The characters unwind and work towards their respective conclusions. Simba didn’t fall off the cliff. Instead, he won the fight. And he roars atop Pride Rock to reclaim his rightful place as King. The lionesses proclaim their joyful acceptance by roaring back. 

Resolution – remaining conflict concludes, and the story ends. In Lion King, Pride Land is once again lush and peaceful. And Simba looks on with pride as he introduces his daughter Kiara on top of Pride Rock.

You can think of the theme as the main idea. What meaning is the writer trying to express in the story? The other elements, such as setting, plot, and characters, work together to convey the theme.

Point of View

Through what lens or “eye” does the narrating voice tell the story? There are three points of view common in writing stories:

First Person

In the first person point of view, the narrating voice is the main character. Much of the lines talk of “I” and “me.” Everything you know about the other characters, places, and dialogues in the story comes from the main character’s perspective. 

Third Person 

From the third person point of view, the narrating voice is separate from the main character. Meaning the narrator uses “he/she/they” when following the main character in the story. There are generally two types of third-person points of view. 

Limited. In a third-person limited point of view, the narrator only knows about the main character’s inner world – their thoughts and feelings. But they have no idea about the thoughts and feelings of other characters. 

Omniscient. What does “omniscient” mean? All-knowing. So in the Third Person Omniscient point of view, the narrator knows about the feelings and thoughts of all the characters. Not just that of the main character. 

In a story that uses a third-person omniscient point of view, the all-knowing narrator sometimes follows the story from multiple characters’ perspectives. 

There you have it! By now, you’ve learned about creative writing examples, plus creative elements should you want to write a story. Browse our creative writing tips if you’re looking for a bit of help to engage your audience.

Still feel like you need more heavy-lifting? If it’s a talented Oxford, Cambridge, or Ivy League tutor you need to help you master creative writing, check out these creative writing online courses .

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feature_creativewritingprompts

The most common advice out there for being a writer is, "if you want to write, write." While this is true (and good advice), it's not always that easy, particularly if you're not writing regularly.

Whether you're looking for help getting started on your next project, or just want to spend 20 minutes being creative, writing prompts are great ways to rev up your imagination. Read on for our list of over 100 creative writing prompts!

feature image credit: r. nial bradshaw /Flickr

10 Short Writing Prompts

If you're looking for a quick boost to get yourself going, these 10 short writing prompts will do the trick.

#1 : Write a scene starting with a regular family ritual that goes awry.

#2 : Describe exactly what you see/smell/hear/etc, right now. Include objects, people, and anything else in your immediate environment.

#3 : Suggest eight possible ways to get a ping pong ball out of a vertical pipe.

#4 : A shoe falls out of the sky. Justify why.

#5 : If your brain were a tangible, physical place, what would it be like?

#6 : Begin your writing with the phrase, "The stage was set."

#7 : You have been asked to write a history of "The Summer of [this past year]." Your publisher wants a table of contents. What events will you submit?

#8 : Write a sympathetic story from the point of view of the "bad guy." (Think fractured fairy tales like Wicked or The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs! , although the story doesn't have to be a fairy tale.)

#9 : Look at everyday objects in a new way and write about the stories one of these objects contains.

#10 : One person meets a stranger on a mode of transportation. Write the story that ensues.

body_modeoftransportation

11 Writing Prompts for Kids

Any of these prompts can be used by writers of any age, but we chose the following 11 prompts as ones that would be particularly fun for kids to write about. (Most of them I used myself as a young writer, so I can vouch for their working!)

#1 : Include something falling in your writing.

#2 : Write a short poem (or story) with the title, "We don't know when it will be fixed."

#3 : Write from the perspective of someone of a different gender than you.

#4 : Write a dumb internet quiz.

#5 : Finish this thought: "A perfect day in my imagination begins like this:"

#6 : Write a character's inner monologue (what they are thinking as they go about their day).

#7 : Think of a character. Write a paragraph each about:

  • An important childhood experience that character had.
  • The character's living situation.
  • Two hobbies or things the character likes to do.
  • The room where the character sleeps.
  • An ambition of the character.
  • Two physical characteristics of the character.
  • What happens when a second person and this character meet.
  • Two important defining personal traits of this character.

#8 : Start a story with a quote from a song.

#9 : Begin a story with, "It was the summer of ______ when ______"

#10 : Pretend everyday objects have no names. Think about what you would name them based on what they do, what you can use them for, and what they look like.

#11 : Start a story with the phrases "My grandparents are/were," "My parents are/were," or "My mother/father/parent is/was."

body_mygrandfatherwasprompt

15 Cool Writing Prompts

#1 : List five issues that you're passionate about. Write about them from the opposite point of view (or from the perspective of a character with the opposite point of view).

#2 : Walk around and write down a phrase you hear (or read). Make a story out of it.

#3 : Write using no adjectives or adverbs.

#4 : Write a character's inner dialogue between different aspects of a character's self (rather than an inner monologue).

#5 : Write a true story from your past that involves light or darkness in some way.

#6 : "Saying goodbye awakens us to the true nature of things." Write something in which someone has to say goodbye and has a realization.

#7 : Begin by writing the end of the story.

#8 : Write a recipe for an intangible thing.

#9 : Write a horror story about an ordinary situation (e.g., buying groceries, going to the bank, listening to music).

#10 : Write a story from within a bubble.

#11 : Write down 2-3 short character descriptions and then write the characters in conversation with one another.

#12 : Write a story in second person.

#13 : Write a story that keeps contradicting itself.

#14 : Write about a character with at least three big problems.

#15 : Write something that takes place on a Friday, the 13th (of any month).

body_somethingfridaythe13thprompt

15 Funny Writing Prompts

#1 : Write a story which starts with someone eating a pickle and potato sandwich.

#2 : Write a short script where the plot has to do with evil dolls trying to take over something.

#3 : Write about writers' block.

#4 : List five election issues that would be ridiculous to includes as part of your election platform (e.g. outlawing mechanical pencils and clicky pens, mandating every person over the age of 30 must own an emergency last rites kit). Choose one of the ridiculous issues and write a speech in favor of it.

#5 : Write a children's story that is insanely inappropriate but can't use graphic language, curses, or violence.

#6 : List five careers. Write about someone with one of those careers who wants to quit it.

#7 : Write down a list of murder methods. Choose one at random from the list to use in a story.

#8 : Write a romance story in which the hero must have a last name corresponding with a physical characteristic (e.g. Jacques Hairyback or Flora Dimple).

#9 : Come up with 10 different ways to:

  • order a pizza
  • congratulate someone on a job well done
  • return to the store something that's broken

#10 : Search for "random Renaissance painting" (or any other inspirational image search text you can think of) on any online internet image search engine. Picking one image, write half a page each of:

  • Statements about this image (e.g. "I meant bring me the BREAD of John the Baptist").
  • Questions about this image (e.g. "How many of those cherubs look like their necks are broken?").
  • Explanations of this image (e.g. "The painter ran out of blue paint halfway through and had to improvise for the color of the sky").
  • Commands said by people in this image or about this image (e.g. "Stop telling me to smile!" or "Bring me some gasoline!").

#11 : Write starting with a word that sounds like "chute" (e.g. "chute," "shoot," "shooed").

#12 : Write about a character named X "The [article of clothing]" Y (e.g. Julie "The Yellow Darted Skirt" Whyte) or simply referred to by their clothing (e.g. "the man in the brown suit" or "the woman in black").

#13 : Write down a paragraph each describing two wildly different settings. Write a story involving both settings.

#14 : Think of a fictional holiday based around some natural event (e.g. the Earth being at its farthest point from the sun, in memory of a volcanic eruption, that time a cloud looked like a rabbit riding a bicycle). Write about how this holiday is celebrated.

#15 : Write a "Just-So" type story about a fictional creature (e.g. "how the dragon got its firebreath" or "how the mudkip got its cheek gills").

body_justsostory

54 Other Writing Prompt Ideas

#1 : Borrow a character from some other form of media (or create your own). Write from that character's perspective.

#2 : Write for and against a non-consequential controversy (e.g., salt vs. pepper, Mac vs. PC, best kind of door).

#3 : Choose an ancestor or a person from the past to write about or to.

#4 : Write a pirate story with a twist.

#5 : Have a character talk about another character and their feelings about that other character.

#6 : Pick a season and think about an event in your life that occurred in that season. Write a creative nonfiction piece about that event and that season.

#7 : Think of something very complicated and long. Write a page about it using short sentences.

#8 : Write a story as a dream.

#9 : Describe around a food without ever directly naming it.

#10 : Write a monologue (one character, talking to the audience/reader) (*not* an inner monologue).

#11 : Begin a story with the phrase, "It only took five seconds to..."

#12 : List five strong emotions. Choosing one, write about a character experiencing that emotion, but only use the character's actions to convey how they are feeling (no outright statements).

#13 : Write a chapter of the memoir of your life.

#14 : Look through the (physical) things you're currently carrying with you or wearing. Write about the memories or emotions tied with each of them.

#15 : Go be in nature. Write drawing your story from your surroundings (both physical, social, and mental/emotional).

body_writinginnature

#16 : Write from the perspective of a bubble (or bubble-like creature).

#17 : A person is jogging along an asphalt road. Write a story.

#18 : Title your story (or poem, or play, etc) "Anti-_____". Fill in the blank and write the story.

#19 : Write something that must include an animal, a mineral, and a vegetable.

#20 : Begin your writing with the phrase, "6 weeks later..."

#21 : List 5-10 office jobs. Pick one of them and describe a person working in that job as if you were a commentator on an Olympic sporting event.

#22 : Practice your poetic imagery: overwrite a description of a character's breakfast routine.

#23 : Write about a character (or group of characters) trying to convince another character to try something they're scared of.

#24 : Keep an eye out in your environment for examples of greengrocer's apostrophes and rogue quotation marks. Pick an example and write about what the misplaced punctuation implies (e.g., we have the "best" meat or we have the best "meat" ).

#25 : Fill in the blank with the first word that comes to mind: "_______ Riot!" Write a newspaper-style article describing the events that that took place.

#26 : Write from the point of view of your most-loved possession. What does it think of you?

#27 : Think of five common sayings (e.g., "An apple a day keeps the doctor away"). Write a horror story whose plot is one of those common sayings.

#28 : Write a scene in which two characters are finally hashing out a long-standing misunderstanding or disagreement.

#29 : You start receiving text messages from an unknown number. Tell the story of what happens next.

#30 : Write one character bragging to another about the story behind their new tattoo.

#31 : Superheroes save the world...but they also leave a lot of destruction in their wake. Write about a normal person in a superhero's world.

#32 : Sometimes, family is who we are related to; sometimes, family is a group of people we gather around ourselves. Write a story about (some of) a character's found family and relatives meeting for the first time.

#33 : Write a story that begins in the middle of the plot's action ( en media res ).

#34 : Everyone says you can never have too much of a good thing. Write a story where that isn't true.

#35 : What do ghosts do when they're not creating mischief? Write about the secret lives of ghosts.

body_secretlivesofghosts

#36 : Every year, you dread the last week of April. Write a story about why.

#37 : Write a story about what it would be like to have an animal sidekick in real life.

#38 : Heists don't just have to be black-clad thieves stealing into vaults to steal rare art or money. Write about a group of people (adults or children) who commit a heist for something of seemingly little monetary value.

#39 : "Life is like a chooseable-path adventure, except you don't get to see what would have happened if you chose differently." Think of a choice you've made and write about a world where you made a different choice.

#40 : Write a story about a secret room.

#41 : You find a message in a bottle with very specific directions. Write a story about the adventure you embark upon.

#42 : "You'll always be okay as long as you know where your _______ is." Fill in the blank and write a story (either fictional or from your life) illustrating this statement.

#43 : Forcing people into prolonged proximity can change and deepen relationships. Write about characters on a road trip together.

#44 : In music, sonata form includes three main parts: exposition, development, and recapitulation. Write a short story that follows this format.

#45 : Begin writing with a character saying, "I'm afraid this simply can't wait."

#46 : Write a story with a happy ending (either happily-ever-after or happy-for-now).

#47 : Write about a character before and after a tragedy in that character's life.

#48 : Choose an object or concept you encounter in everyday life (e.g. tables, the feeling of hot or cold, oxygen) and write an infomercial about it.

#49 : "Life is a series of quests, whether important or mundane." Write about a quest you've gone on (or would like to go on, or will have to go on).

#50 : List 10 different ways to learn. Choose one (or more) and write a story where a character learns something using that one (or more) method.

#51 : You've been called to the principal's office for bad behavior. You know what you did. Explain and justify yourself.

#52 : A character discovers their sibling owns a cursed object. Write about what happens next.

#53 : Write a character description by writing a list of items that would be on a scavenger hunt about them.

#54 : The slogan for a product or service you're advertising is, "Kid-tested, _____." Fill in the blank and write the copy for a radio or podcast advertisement for your product.

body_kidtestedwritingprompt

How to Use Creative Writing Prompts

There's no wrong way to use a creative writing prompt (unless it's to harass and hurt someone)—the point of them is to get you writing and your imagination flowing.

To help you get the most out of these writing prompts, however, we've come up with the six tips below. Try them out!

#1: DON'T Limit Yourself to Prose

Unless you're writing for a particular assignment, there's no reason everything you write in response to a writing prompt has to be prose fiction . Instead of writing your response to a prompt as a story, try writing a poem, nonfiction essay, play, screenplay, or some other format entirely.

#2: DON'T Edit as You Write

The purposes of writing prompts is to get you writing, typos and weird grammar and all. Editing comes later, once you've finished writing and have some space from it to come back to what you wrote.

It's OK to fix things that will make it difficult to read what you've written (e.g., a weird autocorrect that changes the meaning of a sentence), but don't worry too much about typos or perfect grammar when you're writing; those are easy enough to fix in edits . You also can always insert asterisks or a short note as you're writing to remind yourself to go back to fix something (for instance, if as you're writing it seems like you want to move around the order of your paragraphs or insert something earlier).

#3: DO Interpret the Prompt Broadly

The point of using a writing prompt is not to write something that best exemplifies the prompt, but something that sparks your own creativity. Again, unless you're writing in response to an assignment with specific directions, feel free to interpret writing prompts as broadly or as narrowly as you want.

For instance, if your prompt is to write a story that begins with "The stage was set," you could write about anything from someone preparing to put a plan into motion to a literal theatre stage constructed out of pieces of old sets (or something else entirely).

If you're using a writing prompt, it doesn't have to be the first sentence of your story or poem, either; you can also use the prompt as a goal to work towards in your writing.

#4: DO Try Switching Up Your Writing Methods

If it's a possibility for you, see if you write differently in different media. Do you write the same kind of stories by hand as you would typing at a computer? What about if you dictate a story and then transcribe it? Or text it to a friend? Varying the method you use to write can affect the stories you're able to tell.

For example, you may find that it's easier for you to tell stories about your life to a voice recorder than to try to write out a personal essay. Or maybe you have trouble writing poetry, but can easily text yourself or a friend a poem. You might even find you like a writing method you've not tried before better than what you've been doing!

body_switchwritingmethods

#5: DO Mix and Match Prompt Ideas

If you need more inspiration, feel free to combine multiple prompts (but don't overwhelm yourself with too much to write about).

You can also try switching genres from what might be suggested in the prompt. For instance, try writing a prompt that seems funny in a serious and sad way, or finding the humor in something that otherwise seems humorless. The categories we've organized the prompts into are by no means limiters on what you're allowed to write about.

#6: DO Try to Write Regularly

The more regularly you write, the easier it will be to write (with or without writing prompts).

For some people, this means writing daily; for others, it means setting aside time to write each weekend or each month. Set yourself an achievable goal (write 2x a week, write 1000 words a month) and stick to it. You can always start small and then ramp your wordcount or frequency up.

If you do better when you have something outside yourself prompting to write, you may also want to try something like morning pages , which encourages you to write at least 750 words every day, in any format (story, diary entry, social media postings, etc).

body_planouttimetowrite

What's Next?

Thinking about attending college or grad school for creative writing? Our articles on whether or not you should major in creative writing and the best creative writing programs are there for you! Plus, if you're a high schooler, you should check out these top writing contests .

Creative writing doesn't necessarily have to be fiction. Check out these three examples of narrative writing and our tips for how to write your own narrative stories and essays .

Just as writing prompts can help give form to amorphous creative energy, using specific writing structures or devices can be great starting points for your next story. Read through our discussion of the top 20 poetic devices to know and see if you can work at least one new one into your next writing session.

Still looking for more writing ideas? Try repurposing our 100+ easy drawing ideas for characters, settings, or plot points in your writing.

Laura graduated magna cum laude from Wellesley College with a BA in Music and Psychology, and earned a Master's degree in Composition from the Longy School of Music of Bard College. She scored 99 percentile scores on the SAT and GRE and loves advising students on how to excel in high school.

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Creative Primer

What is Creative Writing? A Key Piece of the Writer’s Toolbox

Brooks Manley

Not all writing is the same and there’s a type of writing that has the ability to transport, teach, and inspire others like no other.

Creative writing stands out due to its unique approach and focus on imagination. Here’s how to get started and grow as you explore the broad and beautiful world of creative writing!

What is Creative Writing?

Creative writing is a form of writing that extends beyond the bounds of regular professional, journalistic, academic, or technical forms of literature. It is characterized by its emphasis on narrative craft, character development, and the use of literary tropes or poetic techniques to express ideas in an original and imaginative way.

Creative writing can take on various forms such as:

  • short stories
  • screenplays

It’s a way for writers to express their thoughts, feelings, and ideas in a creative, often symbolic, way . It’s about using the power of words to transport readers into a world created by the writer.

5 Key Characteristics of Creative Writing

Creative writing is marked by several defining characteristics, each working to create a distinct form of expression:

1. Imagination and Creativity: Creative writing is all about harnessing your creativity and imagination to create an engaging and compelling piece of work. It allows writers to explore different scenarios, characters, and worlds that may not exist in reality.

2. Emotional Engagement: Creative writing often evokes strong emotions in the reader. It aims to make the reader feel something — whether it’s happiness, sorrow, excitement, or fear.

3. Originality: Creative writing values originality. It’s about presenting familiar things in new ways or exploring ideas that are less conventional.

4. Use of Literary Devices: Creative writing frequently employs literary devices such as metaphors, similes, personification, and others to enrich the text and convey meanings in a more subtle, layered manner.

5. Focus on Aesthetics: The beauty of language and the way words flow together is important in creative writing. The aim is to create a piece that’s not just interesting to read, but also beautiful to hear when read aloud.

Remember, creative writing is not just about producing a work of art. It’s also a means of self-expression and a way to share your perspective with the world. Whether you’re considering it as a hobby or contemplating a career in it, understanding the nature and characteristics of creative writing can help you hone your skills and create more engaging pieces .

For more insights into creative writing, check out our articles on creative writing jobs and what you can do with a creative writing degree and is a degree in creative writing worth it .

Styles of Creative Writing

To fully understand creative writing , you must be aware of the various styles involved. Creative writing explores a multitude of genres, each with its own unique characteristics and techniques.

Poetry is a form of creative writing that uses expressive language to evoke emotions and ideas. Poets often employ rhythm, rhyme, and other poetic devices to create pieces that are deeply personal and impactful. Poems can vary greatly in length, style, and subject matter, making this a versatile and dynamic form of creative writing.

Short Stories

Short stories are another common style of creative writing. These are brief narratives that typically revolve around a single event or idea. Despite their length, short stories can provide a powerful punch, using precise language and tight narrative structures to convey a complete story in a limited space.

Novels represent a longer form of narrative creative writing. They usually involve complex plots, multiple characters, and various themes. Writing a novel requires a significant investment of time and effort; however, the result can be a rich and immersive reading experience.

Screenplays

Screenplays are written works intended for the screen, be it television, film, or online platforms. They require a specific format, incorporating dialogue and visual descriptions to guide the production process. Screenwriters must also consider the practical aspects of filmmaking, making this an intricate and specialized form of creative writing.

If you’re interested in this style, understanding creative writing jobs and what you can do with a creative writing degree can provide useful insights.

Writing for the theater is another specialized form of creative writing. Plays, like screenplays, combine dialogue and action, but they also require an understanding of the unique dynamics of the theatrical stage. Playwrights must think about the live audience and the physical space of the theater when crafting their works.

Each of these styles offers unique opportunities for creativity and expression. Whether you’re drawn to the concise power of poetry, the detailed storytelling of novels, or the visual language of screenplays and plays, there’s a form of creative writing that will suit your artistic voice. The key is to explore, experiment, and find the style that resonates with you.

For those looking to spark their creativity, our article on creative writing prompts offers a wealth of ideas to get you started.

Importance of Creative Writing

Understanding what is creative writing involves recognizing its value and significance. Engaging in creative writing can provide numerous benefits – let’s take a closer look.

Developing Creativity and Imagination

Creative writing serves as a fertile ground for nurturing creativity and imagination. It encourages you to think outside the box, explore different perspectives, and create unique and original content. This leads to improved problem-solving skills and a broader worldview , both of which can be beneficial in various aspects of life.

Through creative writing, one can build entire worlds, create characters, and weave complex narratives, all of which are products of a creative mind and vivid imagination. This can be especially beneficial for those seeking creative writing jobs and what you can do with a creative writing degree .

Enhancing Communication Skills

Creative writing can also play a crucial role in honing communication skills. It demands clarity, precision, and a strong command of language. This helps to improve your vocabulary, grammar, and syntax, making it easier to express thoughts and ideas effectively .

Moreover, creative writing encourages empathy as you often need to portray a variety of characters from different backgrounds and perspectives. This leads to a better understanding of people and improved interpersonal communication skills.

Exploring Emotions and Ideas

One of the most profound aspects of creative writing is its ability to provide a safe space for exploring emotions and ideas. It serves as an outlet for thoughts and feelings , allowing you to express yourself in ways that might not be possible in everyday conversation.

Writing can be therapeutic, helping you process complex emotions, navigate difficult life events, and gain insight into your own experiences and perceptions. It can also be a means of self-discovery , helping you to understand yourself and the world around you better.

So, whether you’re a seasoned writer or just starting out, the benefits of creative writing are vast and varied. For those interested in developing their creative writing skills, check out our articles on creative writing prompts and how to teach creative writing . If you’re considering a career in this field, you might find our article on is a degree in creative writing worth it helpful.

4 Steps to Start Creative Writing

Creative writing can seem daunting to beginners, but with the right approach, anyone can start their journey into this creative field. Here are some steps to help you start creative writing .

1. Finding Inspiration

The first step in creative writing is finding inspiration . Inspiration can come from anywhere and anything. Observe the world around you, listen to conversations, explore different cultures, and delve into various topics of interest.

Reading widely can also be a significant source of inspiration. Read different types of books, articles, and blogs. Discover what resonates with you and sparks your imagination.

For structured creative prompts, visit our list of creative writing prompts to get your creative juices flowing.

Editor’s Note : When something excites or interests you, stop and take note – it could be the inspiration for your next creative writing piece.

2. Planning Your Piece

Once you have an idea, the next step is to plan your piece . Start by outlining:

  • the main points

Remember, this can serve as a roadmap to guide your writing process. A plan doesn’t have to be rigid. It’s a flexible guideline that can be adjusted as you delve deeper into your writing. The primary purpose is to provide direction and prevent writer’s block.

3. Writing Your First Draft

After planning your piece, you can start writing your first draft . This is where you give life to your ideas and breathe life into your characters.

Don’t worry about making it perfect in the first go. The first draft is about getting your ideas down on paper . You can always refine and polish your work later. And if you don’t have a great place to write that first draft, consider a journal for writing .

4. Editing and Revising Your Work

The final step in the creative writing process is editing and revising your work . This is where you fine-tune your piece, correct grammatical errors, and improve sentence structure and flow.

Editing is also an opportunity to enhance your storytelling . You can add more descriptive details, develop your characters further, and make sure your plot is engaging and coherent.

Remember, writing is a craft that improves with practice . Don’t be discouraged if your first few pieces don’t meet your expectations. Keep writing, keep learning, and most importantly, enjoy the creative process.

For more insights on creative writing, check out our articles on how to teach creative writing or creative writing activities for kids.

Tips to Improve Creative Writing Skills

Understanding what is creative writing is the first step. But how can one improve their creative writing skills? Here are some tips that can help.

Read Widely

Reading is a vital part of becoming a better writer. By immersing oneself in a variety of genres, styles, and authors, one can gain a richer understanding of language and storytelling techniques . Different authors have unique voices and methods of telling stories, which can serve as inspiration for your own work. So, read widely and frequently!

Practice Regularly

Like any skill, creative writing improves with practice. Consistently writing — whether it be daily, weekly, or monthly — helps develop your writing style and voice . Using creative writing prompts can be a fun way to stimulate your imagination and get the words flowing.

Attend Writing Workshops and Courses

Formal education such as workshops and courses can offer structured learning and expert guidance. These can provide invaluable insights into the world of creative writing, from understanding plot development to character creation. If you’re wondering is a degree in creative writing worth it, these classes can also give you a taste of what studying creative writing at a higher level might look like .

Joining Writing Groups and Communities

Being part of a writing community can provide motivation, constructive feedback, and a sense of camaraderie. These groups often hold regular meetings where members share their work and give each other feedback. Plus, it’s a great way to connect with others who share your passion for writing.

Seeking Feedback on Your Work

Feedback is a crucial part of improving as a writer. It offers a fresh perspective on your work, highlighting areas of strength and opportunities for improvement. Whether it’s from a writing group, a mentor, or even friends and family, constructive criticism can help refine your writing .

Start Creative Writing Today!

Remember, becoming a proficient writer takes time and patience. So, don’t be discouraged by initial challenges. Keep writing, keep learning, and most importantly, keep enjoying the process. Who knows, your passion for creative writing might even lead to creative writing jobs and what you can do with a creative writing degree .

Happy writing!

Brooks Manley

Brooks Manley

5 examples of creative writing

Creative Primer  is a resource on all things journaling, creativity, and productivity. We’ll help you produce better ideas, get more done, and live a more effective life.

My name is Brooks. I do a ton of journaling, like to think I’m a creative (jury’s out), and spend a lot of time thinking about productivity. I hope these resources and product recommendations serve you well. Reach out if you ever want to chat or let me know about a journal I need to check out!

Here’s my favorite journal for 2024: 

the five minute journal

Gratitude Journal Prompts Mindfulness Journal Prompts Journal Prompts for Anxiety Reflective Journal Prompts Healing Journal Prompts Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Journal Prompts Mental Health Journal Prompts ASMR Journal Prompts Manifestation Journal Prompts Self-Care Journal Prompts Morning Journal Prompts Evening Journal Prompts Self-Improvement Journal Prompts Creative Writing Journal Prompts Dream Journal Prompts Relationship Journal Prompts "What If" Journal Prompts New Year Journal Prompts Shadow Work Journal Prompts Journal Prompts for Overcoming Fear Journal Prompts for Dealing with Loss Journal Prompts for Discerning and Decision Making Travel Journal Prompts Fun Journal Prompts

Inspiring Ink: Expert Tips on How to Teach Creative Writing

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25 Creative Writing Prompts to Ignite Your Creativity

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Creative Writing Ultimate Guide

POSTED ON Dec 28, 2022

Gloria Russell

Written by Gloria Russell

I don’t know about you, but when I start learning a new skill, I want to know everything about it right away. How do I get started? What do I need to get started? How could this new skill transform my life?

Being an incessant researcher of new pastimes, I love a good master post. So, I’ve made one today for one of my favorite things in the world: creative writing .

I wrote this for people who are just getting into creative writing, but even if you’ve been writing for a while, stay tuned—some of the tricks and resources in this post will be helpful for you, too.

Need A Fiction Book Outline?

What is creative writing?

Creative writing examples, how to start creative writing, creative writing prompts, creative writing jobs, creative writing degrees, online creative writing courses.

Creative writing is imaginative writing. It’s meant to entertain its readers and get some emotional response from them. You’ll note that I said imaginative , but I didn’t say fictional writing, because while fiction is a subcategory of creative writing, it doesn’t define creative writing. All fiction is creative writing, but not all creative writing is fiction.

While technical, legal, or academic writing might be focused on conveying information in the most efficient and clear manner possible, the goal of creative writing is slightly different. You still want to communicate effectively and clearly, but you also want to put some pep in there. Creative writing uses tools like metaphor and imagery to evoke an image, emotion, or both from the reader.

Another way to look at it: if you were to say what makes creative writing distinct as a form, you could say it’s the artsy one.

Creative writing covers more than just fiction, or even just novels . Here’s a quick rundown of some types of creative writing you might encounter.

Novels (which fall under the ‘fiction’ umbrella) are a type of creative writing where the reader follows a character or characters through a plot. A novel might be a standalone, or it might be part of a series.

Example: Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler

2. Short Stories

Short stories (which also fall under the ‘fiction’ umbrella) follow a character through a plot, like you’d see in a novel, but short stories are, well, shorter. Generally, short stories run between 1,000 and 10,000 words, with works under 1,000 words falling under the subcategory ‘flash fiction.’

Example: The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Poetry is a form of writing which focuses heavily on imagery, metaphor, symbolism, and other figurative tools. It also involves a lot of technical work with form; meter and rhythm are commonly used to enhance meaning. You can generally tell what poems are by looking at them, since they’re usually divided into groups of lines (stanzas) instead of paragraphs, like you might see in other forms of creative writing.

Example: Little Beast by Richard Siken

Related: Where to Publish Poetry

Plays are written for the stage. They include stage direction, brief scene descriptions, and character dialogue, but there’s often not a lot of prose. Plays are intended to be watched by an audience instead of read, so whatever prose exists, it is intended for the people participating in the play.

Example: Hamlet by Shakespeare

Songs are similar to poetry in terms of their structure and use of figurative language, but songs are meant to be performed. People don’t generally read song lyrics without listening to it, and the instrumentation and production often enhance the meaning of a song. Songwriters also use music theory to play with meaning—at a basic level, for example, minor chords generally convey sadness, while major chords generally convey happiness.

Example: Let it Be by the Beatles

6. Memoirs & Personal Essays

Memoirs and personal essays are a form of creative writing where an author draws on their real lived experience to create a narrative. Memoir specifically sometimes plays with chronological order and specific technical fact in favor of symbolic resonance—the author is getting at an emotional truth rather than a literal or objective truth.

Example: Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris

7. Journaling

Not everyone uses journaling as a creative writing exercise—some people want to log their daily activities and be done with it—but if you’ve ever poured your heart out about a breakup to the nonjudgmental pages of a notebook, you’ve probably already done some creative writing!

Want to find more examples? I wrote on this topic for another site, and it includes even more examples of creative writing for you to try.

Now that you know what creative writing looks like, let’s talk about how to get started, even if you’ve never practiced creative writing before.

1. Try stuff on until something fits

Take a look at the list above (or do a Google search for ‘types of creative writing’ and see if there’s anything else you might be interested in—I won’t be offended) and pick one that seems fun. If you want to try, for example, a screenplay, but you’re not sure how to write one, read a bunch. Get a feel for how they work.

Maybe you do that and decide you don't want to write screenplays after all. Okay! Try short stories. Try poetry. Try songwriting. Practicing different forms will make you a more well-rounded writer in the long run, and you might be surprised at what resonates with you.

2. Practice, practice, practice

Once you’ve found a form or a few forms that suit you, your job as a newbie is simple: practice. Write whatever you want as often as you can and, if possible, for your eyes only. Create a relationship between yourself and your craft.

Some say you should start with short stories before jumping into novels so you can practice completing narrative arcs. That might work great! But if you hate writing short stories, just practice with writing novels.

If you have an idea that feels a little too advanced for you, that’s probably what you should be working on, since it’ll teach you a lot about the craft along the way. Don’t be intimidated, and don’t worry about anyone else’s opinions (this includes any fretting about publishing). Your singular goal here is to create, and your secondary goal is to challenge yourself.

3. Join some kind of writerly group

But hold on, you might be thinking. How do I know I’m not getting worse the more I practice? How do I know I’m not just churning out garbage?

At some point, especially if your goal is to publish , you’ll want feedback on your work. And while it’s important to have the support of your loved ones, it’s also important to get feedback from other writers.

I do not recommend sending your very first manuscript to an editor or well-established writer for feedback—their feedback, generally aimed at moderate to advanced writers, is probably going to devastate you at the fledgling stage. I do recommend finding other writers at approximately your skill level to bounce ideas off of and exchange critiques. These other writers can be found online or at local writing circles—check your local public library for creative writing workshops.

Have you picked out a form of creative writing to try, but you just can’t come up with any ideas? Try using a creative writing prompt to get those creative gears turning. These are totally for you to use however is most helpful: use the prompt as-is, tweak it a little, whatever works.

Prompts are a great way to explore different types of tones in writing and hone your own personal style as an author!

Use this FREE tool: Writing Prompts Generator

Looking to make some money with your creative writing endeavors? Here’s a few options to kickstart your job search:

Ghostwriting

As a ghostwriter, your job is to write the story your client assigns you . This might be a fictional novel, or it might be a memoir. The client often has specific requests for content, length, and so on. The catch? Your name is not on the book. You’re not allowed to say that you wrote it—the client’s name or pen name usually goes on the author line. You can find ghostwriting gigs on sites like Upwork or Fiverr.

Marketing does involve some technical elements like copywriting, but creative writers have a place in marketing, too. Brands need catchy slogans, funny commercials, and even social media gurus to run entertaining Twitter accounts. For more ideas on how to market your upcoming book , check out our post on the topic.

Columnist/Blog Writer

You can also look for work as an op-ed columnist or blog writer. This might be something you do for an existing website, or it might be a blog you start from scratch on Wix, SquareSpace, or Tumblr.

You might have heard of people getting creative writing degrees, or at least you might have heard some of the discourse surrounding these degrees. Off the bat, I want to say that you don’t need a creative writing degree to be a writer. It doesn’t make you a ‘real’ writer, and it doesn’t indicate your seriousness toward the craft.

If you do want to get a creative writing degree, though, you’re looking (broadly) at two options:

Undergraduate writing programs

This is your BFA in creative writing. Not all colleges offer them—many (like my alma mater) offer a creative writing concentration or focus as part of an English degree. So you might graduate, hypothetically, for example, with a degree in English with a concentration in creative writing. Some colleges don’t offer a major, but they do offer minors.

Check to see what sorts of courses your college or prospective college offers. Do you have to be an English major to take their creative writing course? Does their creative writing course offer guidance in the type of creative writing you want to pursue? For example, my alma mater offered a creative writing concentration with two tracks, one for fiction and one for poetry. There was also a separate film studies concentration for aspiring screenplay writers and film students.

Graduate writing programs (a.k.a., the MFA)

MFA programs can be extremely competitive and prohibitively expensive, not to mention that you’re obviously not guaranteed to come out of them a better writer. They can be a great tool, but they’re not a necessary one. Look at it this way: are you willing to get this MFA if it means you might come out of it without a successfully published novel? If so, proceed.

If you want to pursue an MFA, do your research. Don’t go straight for the Iowa Writers Workshop application page and hope for the best—investigate the universities that look appealing to you, see if your interests align with theirs, and make that application fee count.

Going to college isn’t the only way to take classes on creative writing! If you’re looking for more cost-friendly options, the Internet is your friend. I’ve linked to a few places loaded with creative writing courses to get you started.

1. Intelligent.com: The Best 10 Online Creative Writing Courses

2. Coursera: Best Creative Writing Courses and Certifications

3. Self-Publishing School: Best Self-Publishing Courses

4. Our Programs: Fiction Write Your Book Program

Are you ready to try an online creative writing course? Are you ready to start some creative writing prompts? Or, are you think you're ready to go for a full creative writing project of your own? Here is a resource to help you get started:

FREE BOOK OUTLINE TEMPLATE

100% Customizable For Your Manuscript.

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  • What Is Creative Writing? The ULTIMATE Guide!

Creative Writing Summer School in Yale - students discussing

At Oxford Royale Academy, we offer a range of summer school programmes that have become extremely popular amongst students of all ages. The subject of creative writing continues to intrigue many academics as it can help to develop a range of skills that will benefit you throughout your career and life.

Nevertheless, that initial question is one that continues to linger and be asked time and time again: what is creative writing? More specifically, what does it mean or encompass? How does creative writing differ from other styles of writing?

During our Oxford Summer School programme , we will provide you with in-depth an immersive educational experience on campus in the colleges of the best university in the world. However, in this guide, we want to provide a detailed analysis of everything to do with creative writing, helping you understand more about what it is and why it could benefit you to become a creative writer.

The best place to start is with a definition.

What is creative writing?

The dictionary definition of creative writing is that it is original writing that expresses ideas and thoughts in an imaginative way. [1] Some academics will also define it as the art of making things up, but both of these definitions are too simplistic in the grand scheme of things.

It’s challenging to settle on a concrete definition as creative writing can relate to so many different things and formats. Naturally, as the name suggests, it is all built around the idea of being creative or imaginative. It’s to do with using your brain and your own thoughts to create writing that goes outside the realms of what’s expected. This type of writing tends to be more unique as it comes from a personal place. Each individual has their own level of creativity, combined with their own thoughts and views on different things. Therefore, you can conjure up your own text and stories that could be completely different from others.

Understanding creative writing can be challenging when viewed on its own. Consequently, the best way to truly understand this medium is by exploring the other main forms of writing. From here, we can compare and contrast them with the art of creative writing, making it easier to find a definition or separate this form of writing from others.

What are the main forms of writing?

In modern society, we can identify five main types of writing styles [1] that will be used throughout daily life and a plethora of careers:

  • Narrative Writing
  • Descriptive Writing
  • Persuasive Writing
  • Expository Writing
  • Creative Writing

Narrative writing refers to storytelling in its most basic form. Traditionally, this involves telling a story about a character and walking the readers through the journey they go on. It can be a long novel or a short story that’s only a few hundred words long. There are no rules on length, and it can be completely true or a work of fiction.

A fundamental aspect of narrative writing that makes it different from other forms is that it should includes the key elements of storytelling. As per UX Planet, there are seven core elements of a good story or narrative [2] : the plot, characters, theme, dialogue, melody, decor and spectacle. Narrative writing will include all of these elements to take the ready on a journey that starts at the beginning, has a middle point, but always comes to a conclusion. This style of writing is typically used when writing stories, presenting anecdotes about your life, creating presentations or speeches and for some academic essays.

Descriptive writing, on the other hand, is more focused on the details. When this type of writing is used, it’s focused on capturing the reader’s attention and making them feel like they are part of the story. You want them to live and feel every element of a scene, so they can close their eyes and be whisked away to whatever place or setting you describe.

In many ways, descriptive writing is writing as an art form. Good writers can be given a blank canvas, using their words to paint a picture for the audience. There’s a firm focus on the five senses all humans have; sight, smell, touch, sound and taste. Descriptive writing touches on all of these senses to tell the reader everything they need to know and imagine about a particular scene.

This is also a style of writing that makes good use of both similes and metaphors. A simile is used to describe something as something else, while a metaphor is used to show that something is something else. There’s a subtle difference between the two, but they both aid descriptive writing immensely. According to many writing experts, similes and metaphors allow an author to emphasise, exaggerate, and add interest to a story to create a more vivid picture for the reader [3] .

Looking at persuasive writing and we have a form of writing that’s all about making yourself heard. You have an opinion that you want to get across to the reader, convincing them of it. The key is to persuade others to think differently, often helping them broaden their mind or see things from another point of view. This is often confused with something called opinionative writing, which is all about providing your opinions. While the two seem similar, the key difference is that persuasive writing is built around the idea of submitting evidence and backing your thoughts up. It’s not as simple as stating your opinion for other to read; no, you want to persuade them that your thoughts are worth listening to and perhaps worth acting on.

This style of writing is commonly used journalistically in news articles and other pieces designed to shine a light on certain issues or opinions. It is also typically backed up with statistical evidence to give more weight to your opinions and can be a very technical form of writing that’s not overly emotional.

Expository writing is more focused on teaching readers new things. If we look at its name, we can take the word exposure from it. According to Merriam-Webster [4] , one of the many definitions of exposure is to reveal something to others or present them with something they otherwise didn’t know. In terms of writing, it can refer to the act of revealing new information to others or exposing them to new ideas.

Effectively, expository writing focuses on the goal of leaving the reader with new knowledge of a certain topic or subject. Again, it is predominately seen in journalistic formats, such as explainer articles or ‘how-to’ blogs. Furthermore, you also come across it in academic textbooks or business writing.

This brings us back to the centre of attention for this guide: what is creative writing?

Interestingly, creative writing is often seen as the style of writing that combines many of these forms together in one go. Narrative writing can be seen as creative writing as you are coming up with a story to keep readers engaged, telling a tale for them to enjoy or learn from. Descriptive writing is very much a key part of creative writing as you are using your imagination and creative skills to come up with detailed descriptions that transport the reader out of their home and into a different place.

Creative writing can even use persuasive writing styles in some formats. Many writers will combine persuasive writing with a narrative structure to come up with a creative way of telling a story to educate readers and provide new opinions for them to view or be convinced of. Expository writing can also be involved here, using creativity and your imagination to answer questions or provide advice to the reader.

Essentially, creative writing can combine other writing types to create a unique and new way of telling a story or producing content. At the same time, it can include absolutely none of the other forms at all. The whole purpose of creative writing is to think outside the box and stray from traditional structures and norms. Fundamentally, we can say there are no real rules when it comes to creative writing, which is what makes it different from the other writing styles discussed above.

What is the purpose of creative writing?

Another way to understand and explore the idea of creative writing is to look at its purpose. What is the aim of most creative works of writing? What do they hope to provide the reader with?

We can look at the words of Bryanna Licciardi, an experienced creative writing tutor, to understand the purpose of creative writing. She writes that the primary purpose is to entertain and share human experiences, like love or loss. Writers attempt to reveal the truth with regard to humanity through poetics and storytelling. [5] She also goes on to add that the first step of creative writing is to use one’s imagination.

When students sign up to our creative writing courses, we will teach them how to write with this purpose. Your goal is to create stories or writing for readers that entertain them while also providing information that can have an impact on their lives. It’s about influencing readers through creative storytelling that calls upon your imagination and uses the thoughts inside your head. The deeper you dive into the art of creative writing, the more complex it can be. This is largely because it can be expressed in so many different formats. When you think of creative writing, your instinct takes you to stories and novels. Indeed, these are both key forms of creative writing that we see all the time. However, there are many other forms of creative writing that are expressed throughout the world.

What are the different forms of creative writing?

Looking back at the original and simple definition of creative writing, it relates to original writing in a creative and imaginative way. Consequently, this can span across so many genres and types of writing that differ greatly from one another. This section will explore and analyse the different types of creative writing, displaying just how diverse this writing style can be – while also showcasing just what you’re capable of when you learn how to be a creative writer.

The majority of students will first come across creative writing in the form of essays . The point of an essay is to present a coherent argument in response to a stimulus or question. [6] In essence, you are persuading the reader that your answer to the question is correct. Thus, creative writing is required to get your point across as coherently as possible, while also using great descriptive writing skills to paint the right message for the reader.

Moreover, essays can include personal essays – such as writing a cover letter for work or a university application. Here, great creativity is needed to almost write a story about yourself that captivates the reader and takes them on a journey with you. Excellent imagination and persuasive writing skills can help you tell your story and persuade those reading that you are the right person for the job or university place.

Arguably, this is the most common way in which creative writing is expressed. Fictional work includes novels, novellas, short stories – and anything else that is made up. The very definition of fiction by the Cambridge Dictionary states that it is the type of book or story that is written about imaginary characters and events not based on real people and facts. [7] As such, it means that your imagination is called upon to create something out of nothing. It is a quintessential test of your creative writing skills, meaning you need to come up with characters, settings, plots, descriptions and so much more.

Fictional creative writing in itself takes on many different forms and can be completely different depending on the writer. That is the real beauty of creative writing; you can have entirely different stories and characters from two different writers. Just look at the vast collection of fictional work around you today; it’s the perfect way to see just how versatile creative writing can be depending on the writer.

Similarly, scripts can be a type of creative writing that appeals to many. Technically, a script can be considered a work of fiction. Nevertheless, it depends on the script in question. Scripts for fictional television shows, plays or movies are obviously works of fiction. You, the writer, has come up with the characters and story of the show/play/movie, bringing it all to life through the script. But, scripts can also be non-fictional. Creating a play or movie that adapts real-life events will mean you need to write a script based on something that genuinely happened.

Here, it’s a perfect test of creative writing skills as you take a real event and use your creative talents to make it more interesting. The plot and narrative may already be there for you, so it’s a case of using your descriptive writing skills to really sell it to others and keep readers – or viewers – on the edge of their seats.

A speech is definitely a work of creative writing. The aim of a speech can vary depending on what type of speech it is. A politician delivering a speech in the House of Commons will want to get a point across to persuade others in the room. They’ll need to use creative writing to captivate their audience and have them hanging on their every word. A recent example of a great speech was the one by Sir David Attenborough at the recent COP26 global climate summit. [8] Listening to the speech is a brilliant way of understanding how creative writing can help get points across. His speech went viral around the world because of how electrifying and enthralling it is. The use of many descriptive and persuasive words had people hanging onto everything he said. He really created a picture and an image for people to see, convincing them that the time is now to work on stopping and reversing climate change.

From this speech to a completely different one, you can see creative writing at play for speeches at weddings and other jovial events. Here, the purpose is more to entertain guests and make them laugh. At the same time, someone giving a wedding speech will hope to create a lovely story for the guests to enjoy, displaying the true love that the married couple share for one another. Regardless of what type of speech an individual is giving, creative writing skills are required for it to be good and captivating.

Poetry & Songs

The final example of creative writing is twofold; poetry and songs. Both of these formats are similar to one another, relying on creativity to deliver a combination of things. Poetry can take so many forms and styles, but it aims to inspire readers and get them thinking. Poems often have hidden meanings behind them, and it takes a great deal of imagination and creativity to come up with these meanings while also creating a powerful poem. Some argue that poetry is the most creative of all creative writing forms.

Songwriting is similar in that you use creativity to come up with lyrics that can have powerful meanings while also conjuring up a story for people. The best songwriters will use lyrics that stay in people’s minds and get them thinking about the meaning behind the song. If you lack imagination and creativity, you will never be a good songwriter.

In truth, there are so many other types and examples of creative writing that you can explore. The ones listed above are the most common and powerful, and they all do a great job of demonstrating how diverse creative writing can be. If you can hone your skills in creative writing, it opens up many opportunities for you in life. Primarily, creative writing focuses on fictional pieces of work, but as you can see, non-fiction also requires a good deal of creativity.

What’s needed to make a piece of creative writing?

Our in-depth analysis of creative writing has led to a point where you’re aware of this style of writing and its purpose, along with some examples of it in the real world. The next question to delve into is what do you need to do to make a piece of creative writing. To phrase this another way; how do you write something that comes under the creative heading rather than another form of writing?

There is an element of difficulty in answering this question as creative writing has so many different types and genres. Consequently, there isn’t a set recipe for the perfect piece of creative writing, and that’s what makes this format so enjoyable and unique. Nevertheless, we can discover some crucial elements or principles that will help make a piece of writing as creative and imaginative as possible:

A target audience

All creative works will begin by defining a target audience. There are many ways to define a target audience, with some writers suggesting that you think about who is most likely to read your work. However, this can still be challenging as you’re unsure of the correct demographic to target. Writer’s Digest makes a good point of defining your target audience by considering your main motivation for writing in the first place. [9] It’s a case of considering what made you want to start writing – whether it’s a blog post, novel, song, poem, speech, etc. Figuring out your motivation behind it will help you zero in on your target audience.

Defining your audience is vital for creative writing as it helps you know exactly what to write and how to write it. All of your work should appeal to this audience and be written in a way that they can engage with. As a simple example, authors that write children’s stories will adapt their writing to appeal to the younger audience. Their stories include lots of descriptions and words that children understand, rather than being full of long words and overly academic writing.

Establishing the audience lets the writer know which direction to take things in. As a result, this can aid with things like character choices, plot, storylines, settings, and much more.

A story of sorts

Furthermore, great works of creative writing will always include a story of sorts. This is obvious for works such as novels, short stories, scripts, etc. However, even for things like poems, songs or speeches, a story helps make it creative. It gives the audience something to follow, helping them make sense of the work. Even if you’re giving a speech, setting a story can help you create a scene in people’s minds that makes them connect to what you’re saying. It’s a very effective way of persuading others and presenting different views for people to consider.

Moreover, consider the definition of a story/narrative arc. One definition describes it as a term that describes a story’s full progression. It visually evokes the idea that every story has a relatively calm beginning, a middle where tension, character conflict and narrative momentum builds to a peak and an end where the conflict is resolved. [10]

Simplifying this, we can say that all works of creative writing need a general beginning, middle and end. It’s a way of bringing some sort of structure to your writing so you know where you are going, rather than filling it with fluff or waffle.

A good imagination

Imagination is a buzzword that we’ve used plenty of times throughout this deep dive into creative writing. Every creative writing course you go on will spend a lot of time focusing on the idea of using your imagination. The human brain is a marvellously powerful thing that holds the key to creative freedom and expressing yourself in new and unique ways. If you want to make something creative, you need to tap into your imagination.

People use their imagination in different ways; some will be able to conjure up ideas for stories or worlds that exist beyond our own. Others will use theirs to think of ways of describing things in a more creative and imaginative way. Ultimately, a good imagination is what sets your work apart from others within your genre. This doesn’t mean you need to come up with the most fantastical novel of all time to have something classified as creative writing. No, using your imagination and creativity can extend to something as simple as your writing style.

Ultimately, it’s more about using your imagination to find your own personal flair and creative style. You will then be able to write unique pieces that stand out from the others and keep audiences engaged.

How can creative writing skills benefit you?

When most individuals or students consider creative writing, they imagine a world where they are writing stories for a living. There’s a common misconception that creative writing skills are only beneficial for people pursuing careers in scriptwriting, storytelling, etc. Realistically, enhancing ones creative writing skills can open up many windows of opportunity throughout your education and career.

  • Improve essay writing – Naturally, creative writing forms a core part of essays and other written assignments in school and university. Improving your skills in this department can help a student get better at writing powerful essays and achieving top marks. In turn, this can impact your career by helping you get better grades to access better jobs in the future.
  • Become a journalist – Journalists depend on creative writing to make stories that capture audiences and have people hanging on their every word. You need high levels of creativity to turn a news story into something people are keen to read or watch.
  • Start a blog – In modern times, blogging is a useful tool that can help people find profitable and successful careers. The whole purpose of a blog is to provide your opinions to the masses while also entertaining, informing and educating. Again, having a firm grasp of creative writing skills will aid you in building your blog audience.
  • Write marketing content – From advert scripts to content on websites, marketing is fuelled by creative writing. The best marketers will have creative writing skills to draw an audience in and convince them to buy products. If you can learn to get people hanging on your every word, you can make it in this industry.

These points all demonstrate the different ways in which creative writing can impact your life and alter your career. In terms of general career skills, this is one that you simply cannot go without.

How to improve your creative writing

One final part of this analysis of creative writing is to look at how students can improve. It begins by reading as much as you can and taking in lots of different content. Read books, poems, scripts, articles, blogs – anything you can find. Listen to music and pay attention to the words people use and the structure of their writing. It can help you pick up on things like metaphors, similes, and how to use your imagination. Of course, writing is the key to improving; the more you write, the more creative you can get as you will start unlocking the powers of your brain.

Conclusion: What is creative writing

In conclusion, creative writing uses a mixture of different types of writing to create stories that stray from traditional structures and norms. It revolves around the idea of using your imagination to find a writing style that suits you and gets your points across to an audience, keeping them engaged in everything you say. From novels to speeches, there are many forms of creative writing that can help you in numerous career paths throughout your life.

[1] SkillShare: The 5 Types of Writing Styles with Examples

[2] Elements of Good Story Telling – UX Planet

[3] Simile vs Metaphor: What’s the Difference? – ProWritingAid

[4] Definition of Exposure by Merriam-Webster

[5] The Higher Purpose of Creative Writing | by Terveen Gill

[6] Essay purpose – Western Sydney University

[7] FICTION | meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary

[8] ‘Not fear, but hope’ – Attenborough speech in full – BBC News

[9] Writer’s Digest: Who Is Your Target Reader?

[10] What is a Narrative Arc? • A Guide to Storytelling Structure

Library Home

Elements of Creative Writing

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J.D. Schraffenberger, University of Northern Iowa

Rachel Morgan, University of Northern Iowa

Grant Tracey, University of Northern Iowa

Copyright Year: 2023

ISBN 13: 9780915996179

Publisher: University of Northern Iowa

Language: English

Formats Available

Conditions of use.

Attribution-NonCommercial

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Chapter One: One Great Way to Write a Short Story
  • Chapter Two: Plotting
  • Chapter Three: Counterpointed Plotting
  • Chapter Four: Show and Tell
  • Chapter Five: Characterization and Method Writing
  • Chapter Six: Character and Dialouge
  • Chapter Seven: Setting, Stillness, and Voice
  • Chapter Eight: Point of View
  • Chapter Nine: Learning the Unwritten Rules
  • Chapter One: A Poetry State of Mind
  • Chapter Two: The Architecture of a Poem
  • Chapter Three: Sound
  • Chapter Four: Inspiration and Risk
  • Chapter Five: Endings and Beginnings
  • Chapter Six: Figurative Language
  • Chapter Seven: Forms, Forms, Forms
  • Chapter Eight: Go to the Image
  • Chapter Nine: The Difficult Simplicity of Short Poems and Killing Darlings

Creative Nonfiction

  • Chapter One: Creative Nonfiction and the Essay
  • Chapter Two: Truth and Memory, Truth in Memory
  • Chapter Three: Research and History
  • Chapter Four: Writing Environments
  • Chapter Five: Notes on Style
  • Chapter Seven: Imagery and the Senses
  • Chapter Eight: Writing the Body
  • Chapter Nine: Forms

Back Matter

  • Contributors
  • North American Review Staff

Ancillary Material

  • University of Northern Iowa

About the Book

This free and open access textbook introduces new writers to some basic elements of the craft of creative writing in the genres of fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. The authors—Rachel Morgan, Jeremy Schraffenberger, and Grant Tracey—are editors of the North American Review, the oldest and one of the most well-regarded literary magazines in the United States. They’ve selected nearly all of the readings and examples (more than 60) from writing that has appeared in NAR pages over the years. Because they had a hand in publishing these pieces originally, their perspective as editors permeates this book. As such, they hope that even seasoned writers might gain insight into the aesthetics of the magazine as they analyze and discuss some reasons this work is so remarkable—and therefore teachable. This project was supported by NAR staff and funded via the UNI Textbook Equity Mini-Grant Program.

About the Contributors

J.D. Schraffenberger  is a professor of English at the University of Northern Iowa. He is the author of two books of poems,  Saint Joe's Passion  and  The Waxen Poor , and co-author with Martín Espada and Lauren Schmidt of  The Necessary Poetics of Atheism . His other work has appeared in  Best of Brevity ,  Best Creative Nonfiction ,  Notre Dame Review ,  Poetry East ,  Prairie Schooner , and elsewhere.

Rachel Morgan   is an instructor of English at the University of Northern Iowa. She is the author of the chapbook  Honey & Blood , Blood & Honey . Her work is included in the anthology  Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking in American  and has appeared in the  Journal of American Medical Association ,  Boulevard ,  Prairie Schooner , and elsewhere.

Grant Tracey   author of three novels in the Hayden Fuller Mysteries ; the chapbook  Winsome  featuring cab driver Eddie Sands; and the story collection  Final Stanzas , is fiction editor of the  North American Review  and an English professor at the University of Northern Iowa, where he teaches film, modern drama, and creative writing. Nominated four times for a Pushcart Prize, he has published nearly fifty short stories and three previous collections. He has acted in over forty community theater productions and has published critical work on Samuel Fuller and James Cagney. He lives in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

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5 examples of creative writing

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Exploring the Different Types of Creative Writing

  • on Sep 26, 2022
  • in Writing Tips
  • Last update: November 16th, 2023

Writing comes in all forms and sizes. But in order for a work to be considered creative writing, it must come from a place of imagination and emotion. 

This is something many people pursuing a  creative writing degree online  at first struggle to get a handle on. Take for example what Franz Kafa said about creative writing, “Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.” 

Many authors who choose to follow Kafka’s advice—to write “mercilessly” and from the soul—find it comforting that their writing doesn’t have to conform to one style. But this variety of types and forms might leave some writers a bit confused. 

That’s why, in this article, we are going to walk you through the most popular types of creative writing, with some great examples from authors who absolutely rocked their respective forms.   

Types of Creative Writing

In this article:

  • Creative Writing Definition
  • Creative Writing Techniques
  • Free Writing
  • Journal Diaries
  • Personal Essays
  • Short Fiction
  • Novels/Novellas

What Is Creative Writing?

Think of creative writing as a form of artistic expression. Authors bring this expression to life using their imagination, personal writing style, and personality.

Creative writing is also different from straightforward academic or technical writing. For instance, an economics book like Khalid Ikram’s The Political Economy of Reforms in Egypt is an academic monograph. This means that readers would rightfully expect it to contain analytic rather than creative writing.   

So what are some elements that make a written piece more creative than analytic?

Popular Techniques Used in Creative Writing

Despite the fact that creative writing can be “freer” and less traditional than academic writing, it is likely to contain one or more of the following six elements:

1. Literary Devices

Many creative writers use literary devices to convey the meaning and themes of their work. Some common literary devices are allegories , metaphors and similes , foreshadowing , and imagery . These all serve to make the writing more vivid and descriptive .

2. Narrative

Authors often use this technique to engage readers through storytelling. Narrative isn’t limited to novels and short stories; poems, autobiographies, and essays can be considered narratives if they tell a story. This can be fiction (as in novels) or nonfiction (as in memoirs and essays).

3. Point of View

All creative writing must have a point of view; that’s what makes it imaginative and original. The point of view is the perspective from which the author writes a particular piece. Depending on the type of work, the point of view can be first person, third person omniscient, third person limited , mixed (using third- and first-person writing), or—very rarely—second person.

4. Characterization

Characterization is the process by which authors bring their characters to life by assigning them physical descriptions, personality traits, points of view, background and history, and actions. Characterization is key in creative writing because it helps drive the plot forward. 

5. Dialogue

An important element used in many creative writing works is dialogue . Assigning 

dialogue to characters is a way for authors to show their characters’ different traits without explicitly listing them. 

Dialogue also immerses readers in the narrative’s action by highlighting the emotions and tensions between characters. Like characterization, it also helps drive the plot forward.  

6. Plot 

The plot is the sequence of events that make up a narrative and establish the themes and conflicts of a work . Plots will usually include an exp osi tion (the introduction), rising action (the complications), climax (the peak in action and excitement), falling action (the revelations and slowing down of events), and denouement (the conclusion). 

creativity

The Main Types of Creative Writing (With Examples)

What’s great about creative writing is that there are so many types to choose from. In this section, we’ll walk you through the most popular types of creative writing, along with some examples. 

Type 1: Free writing 

Free writing, also known as stream-of-consciousness writing, is a technique that allows words and images to spill onto the page without giving thought to logic, sequence, or grammar. Although authors often use it as an exercise to get rid of the infamous writer’s block , free writing is also useful within a larger work. 

For instance, let’s take a look at this excerpt from Toni Morrison’s novel Beloved.  

Beloved by Toni Morrison [an excerpt]

Beloved by Toni Morrison

the air is heavy I am not dead I am not there is a house there is what she whispered to me I am where she told me I am not dead I sit the sun closes my eyes when I open them I see the face I lost Sethe’s is the face that left me Sethe sees me see her and I see the smile her smiling face is the place for me it is the face I lost she is my face smiling at me

Note how the author uses free writing to convey the character’s disjointed and agitated thoughts. Even punctuation has been set aside here, adding to the rush of the character’s fear and confusion. The imagery is powerful (“the sun closes my eyes”; “her smiling face is the place for me”) and relies on repetitions like “I am not dead” and “I see” to immerse the readers in the character’s disturbed mental state. 

Type 2: Journals and Diaries 

A journal is a written account of an author’s experiences, activities, and feelings. A diary is an example of a journal, in which an author documents his/her life frequently. 

Journals and diaries can be considered creative writing, particularly if they offer more than just a log of events. For instance, if a diary entry discusses how the writer ran into an old friend, it might include details of the writer’s emotions and probably use literary devices to convey these feelings.   

It’s almost impossible to read the word “diary” and not think of Anne Frank. Let’s look at this excerpt from her work The Diary of a Young Girl . 

Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl [an excerpt]

The diary of a young girl

Saturday, 20 June, 1942: I haven’t written for a few days, because I wanted first of all to think about my diary. It’s an odd idea for someone like me to keep a diary; not only because I have never done so before, but because it seems to me that neither I—nor for that matter anyone else—will be interested in the unbosomings of a thirteen-year-old schoolgirl. Still, what does that matter? I want to write, but more than that, I want to bring out all kinds of things that lie buried deep in my heart. 

In the extract above, Anne adopts a reflective tone. She uses the rhetorical question “what does that matter?” to illustrate how she arrived at the conclusion that this diary will help bring out what is “buried deep in her heart.” 

In this way, the diary serves as a log of events that happened in Anne’s life, but also as a space for Anne to reflect on them, and to explore her resulting emotions. 

Type 3: Memoir

Although they might seem similar at first, memoirs and diaries are two different creative writing types. While diaries offer a log of events recorded at frequent intervals, memoirs allow the writer to select key moments and scenes that help shed light on the writer’s life.  

Let’s examine this excerpt from the memoir of Roxanne Gay, author of Bad Feminist .

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxanne Gay:

Hunger: a memoir

I ate and ate and ate in the hopes that if I made myself big, my body would be safe. I buried the girl I was because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, but she is still there, somewhere . . . I was trapped in my body, one that I barely recognized or understood, but at least I was safe.

Roxanne Gay offers readers a powerful work on anxiety, food, and body image by taking them on a journey through her past . Using evocative imagery in the excerpt above (“I buried the girl I was”; “I was trapped in my body”) the author shares her psychological trauma and resulting tumultuous relationship with food. 

As with most memoirs—and diaries—this one is intimate, allowing readers into the dark crevices of the author’s mind. However, unlike a diary, this memoir does not provide an account of the writer’s day-to-day life, but rather focuses on certain events—big and small—that the author feels made her who she is today. 

Type 4: Letters

Unlike diary and journal entries—which usually don’t have a specific recipient—letters address one target reader. Many famous authors have had collections of their letters published, revealing a side of them that isn’t visible in other works. 

Letter writing uncovers the nature of the relationship between sender and recipient, and can include elements of creative writing such as imagery, opinion, humor, and feeling. 

Here is an excerpt from a letter by Truman Capote, author of Breakfast at Tiffany’s and In Cold Blood . 

Too Brief a Treat: The Letters of Truman Capote , edited by Gerald Clarke 

Too Brief a Treat: The Letters of Truman Capote

Dear Bob;  Have come, am here, am slowly freezing to death; my fingers are pencils of ice. But really, all told, I think this is quite a place, at least so far. The company is fairly good… I have a bedroom in the mansion (there are bats circulating in some of the rooms, and Leo keeps his light on all night, for the wind blows eerily, doors creak, and the faint cheep cheep of the bats cry in the towers above: no kidding. 

In his letter to editor and friend Robert “Bob” Linscott, Truman paints a scene of his new setting . He uses hyperbole (“freezing to death”) and a powerful metaphor (“my fingers are pencils of ice”) to convey the discomforting cold weather. Truman also uses sound imagery (“doors creak”; “wind blows eerily”; “cheep cheep of the bats”) to communicate the creepy, sinister mood to his reader. 

Type 5: Personal Essays

Many of us don’t normally think of essays as creative writing, but that’s probably because our minds go to academic research essays. However, there are many types of essays that require creative rather than analytic writing, including discursive essays, descriptive essays, and personal essays. 

A personal essay, also known as a narrative essay, is a piece of nonfiction work that offers readers a story drawn from the author’s personal experience. This is different from a memoir, in which the primary focus is on the author and their multiple experiences. 

A personal essay, on the other hand, focuses on a message or theme , and the author’s personal experience is there to communicate that theme using memorable characters and setting , as well as engaging events . These, of course, all have to be true, otherwise the personal essay would turn into a fictional short story. 

Here is an excerpt from a personal essay by writers Chantha Nguon and Kim Green.

The Gradual Extinction of Softness by Chantha Nguon and Kim Green

In 1975, the Khmer Rouge informed the Cambodian people that we had no history, but we knew it was a lie. Cambodia has a rich past, a mosaic of flavors from near and far: South Indian traders gave us Buddhism and spicy curries; China brought rice noodles and astrology; and French colonizers passed on a love of strong coffee, flan, and a light, crusty baguette. We lifted the best tastes from everywhere and added our own.

The opening of this paragraph establishes the author’s strong and unwavering opinion : “we knew it was a lie.” Instead of providing a history of Cambodia, she demonstrates the country’s rich past by discussing its diverse “flavors”: “spicy curries”; “strong coffee”; “light, crusty baguette”, etc. 

Using gustatory imagery , which conveys a sense of taste , the authors reveal their personal version of what makes Cambodia wonderful. The writer communicates the essay’s theme of food and memories through a story of her childhood. 

Type 6: Poetry 

Robert Frost once wrote: “Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.” Good poetry is effective because it uses the power of imagery to convey what it is to be human. Every word in a poem counts, and the best poems are those that evoke the reader’s emotions without unpacking too much. 

As one of the most diverse types of creative writing, poetry can come in many forms. Some poets prefer to write in the more traditional forms such as sonnets , villanelles , and haikus , where you have particular structures, rhyme, and rhythm to follow. And others prefer the freedom of free verse and blackout poetry . 

Let’s take a look at this excerpt from Maya Angelou’s powerful lyric poem , “Still I Rise.”

“Still I Rise” from And Still I Rise: A Book of Poems by Maya Angelou

Still I Rise

Out of the huts of history’s shame I rise Up from a past that’s rooted in pain I rise I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise I rise.

Packed with powerful language, this excerpt from Angelou’s poem gives us absolute 

chills! The refrain “I rise” is repeated 7 times in these two verses alone, 

hammering home the idea that the speaker cannot be defeated. 

The imagery, repetition, and rhyme scheme all work together to convey the emotions of pride and resilience. Both verses also rely heavily on metaphors (“I’m a black ocean”; “I am the dream and the hope of the slave”) to convey the speaker’s power. She is not like an ocean or a dream; she is both, and she is unstoppable. 

Type 7: Song Lyrics 

Song lyrics are in many ways similar to poems, except that lyrics are meant to be sung . They are a form of creative writing that allows writers to surpass the rules of grammar and punctuation in favor of creating rhyme and rhythm . This means that the creativity of a  song lyricist is free from the traditional restrictions of language. 

Type 8: Scripts 

Scriptwriting is a form of creative writing that relies heavily on character dialogue , stage directions , and setting . Scripts are written for films and TV shows (known as screenplays and teleplays), stage plays, commercials, and radio and podcast programs. 

Like song lyrics, scripts are written with the intention of reaching a non-reading audience. In other words, scriptwriters must bear in mind how their writing will be 1) interpreted by other storytellers , such as directors, designers, etc., and 2) performed by actors.   

Let’s examine the iconic opening scene from the screenplay of the film Forrest Gump . 

Forrest Gump , screenplay by Eric Roth [an excerpt]

THE MAN Hello, I’m Forrest. I’m Forrest Gump.  She nods, not much interested. He takes an old candy kiss out of his pocket. Offering it to her:  FORREST (cont’d) Do you want a chocolate? She shakes “no.” He unwraps it, popping it in his mouth.  FORREST (cont’d) I could eat about a million and a half of these. Mama said, “Life was just a box of chocolates. You never know what you gonna get.”

From the dialogue and stage directions in this opening scene, the audience can see that there is something innocent, kind-hearted, and simple about the character Forrest Gump. This is conveyed through the way he introduces himself with a slight repetition (“I’m Forrest. I’m Forrest Gump.”) to a complete stranger, and the way he quotes his mother to her. 

Moreover, the action of  Forrest “popping” the candy in his mouth is almost childlike , and that the stranger is reluctant to communicate with him foreshadows the fact that the people Forrest meets are initially suspicious of him and his innocence. Thus, the pauses and silences in the scene are just as important to the work as what is explicitly said. 

Type 9: Short Fiction

Short fiction is a form of creative fiction writing that typically falls between 5,000 to 10,000 words ; however, there is definitely room to go lower than 5,000 words, depending on the topic. 

For instance, flash fiction is a form of short fiction that can be 1,000 words or less. In the case of flash fiction, the author unpacks the “skeleton” of a story in as few words as possible. For instance, legend has it that Ernest Hemingway wrote a 6-word “story”:

For sale: baby shoes, never worn. 

 In just six words, the reader is led to understand that this is a story of death and loss. 

Nevertheless, the average short story is usually structured around the following elements: characterization , setting , plot , and conflict . Many fiction authors start out writing short fiction because it enables them to nail all the essential elements, which they can then expand upon in longer works. 

Let’s look at an excerpt from Janet Frame’s short story, “The Bath”

“The Bath” by Janet Frame [an excerpt]

She leaned forward, feeling the pain in her back and shoulder. She grasped the rim of the bath but her fingers slithered from it almost at once. She would not pancic, she told herself; she would try gradually, carefully, to get out. Again she leaned forward; again her grip loosened as if iron hands had deliberately uncurled her stiffened blue fingers from their trembling hold. Her heart began to beat faster, her breath came more quickly, her mouth was dry. She moistened her lips. If I shout for help, she thought, no-one will hear me. No-one in the world will hear me. No-one will know I’m in the bath and can’t get out. 

In this paragraph, there is an image of a frail, old woman, physically unable to get out of her bathtub. The diction , or word choice, serves to convey the woman’s sense of fear and helplessness. For instance, words like “grasped,” “slithered,” “uncurled,” and “stiffened,” demonstrate the immense effort it takes for her to try to get out.

 The image of her “moistening” her lips illustrates that fear has turned her mouth dry. And the repetition of “no-one” in the last few sentences highlights the woman’s loneliness and entrapment —two of the story’s main themes. Indeed, the bath symbolizes the unavoidable obstacles brought about by old age. 

Type 10: Novellas / Novels

Novels are one of the most popular forms of creative writing. Though they vary in length, depending on the subject, they’re generally considered a long form of fiction , typically divided into chapters . 

Novellas, on the other hand, are shorter than novels but longer than short stories. Like short stories, novels, and novellas contain characters , plot , dialogue , and setting ; however, their longer forms allow writers a chance to delve much deeper into those elements. 

Type 11: Speeches 

Speeches are a form of writing similar to essays in that both forms are non-fiction , and both usually entail a discussion of the writer’s personal experiences and include engaging events and a particular theme.  

However, speeches differ from essays in that the former are meant to be recited (usually in front of an audience), and tend to be persuasive and inspirational. For instance, think of the purpose of graduation speeches and political speeches: they aim to inspire and move listeners. 

One of the most well-known speeches from the 20th century is Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream”. Let’s examine the excerpt below:

“I Have a Dream” by Martin Luther King [an excerpt]

I have a dream (speech writing)

Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children.

What immediately catches the eye (and ear) in this paragraph is the speaker’s usage of anaphora : the repetition of the phrase “now is the time” serves to emphasize the urgency of the matter being discussed (i.e. the prevalence of racial injustice). 

The speaker’s repetition of the pronoun “our” is an appeal to his audience’s emotions and their sense of unity. Both he and they are in this together, and thus he is motivating them to take on the challenge as one. 

Moreover, the use of figurative language is abundant here and can be found in similar inspirational and motivational styles of creative writing. The imagery created by the metaphor and alliteration in “the d ark and d esolate valley of segregation,” and its juxtaposition with “sunlit path of racial justice,” together aim to convey the speaker’s main message. Segregation has brought nothing but darkness and ruin to American society, but there is hope and light on the path toward racial equality.

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Final Thoughts

Creative writing acts as a medium for artistic expression. It can come in a variety of forms, from screenplays and speeches to poetry and flash fiction. But what groups all of these different types of creative writing under the “creative” umbrella, regardless of form, is their display of a writer’s imagination, creativity, and linguistic prowess. 

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I appreciate you offering such a thought-provoking perspective. It should be useful for academic writing in addition to creative writing, in my opinion. Each method you listed is pertinent and appropriate.

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You’re absolutely right! Many of these writing methods can be applied to both creative and academic writing, enhancing the depth and effectiveness of communication.

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Robert smith enago

Thank you for sharing this enlightening blog post on the various types of creative writing. Your exploration of different writing methods and styles provides an inspiring perspective on the boundless possibilities within the realm of creativity.

It is remarkable to see how creative writing encompasses an array of forms, each with its unique allure and artistic essence. From poetry, fiction, and drama to screenwriting, creative nonfiction, and even songwriting, each avenue offers writers a chance to express their thoughts, emotions, and imagination in captivating ways.

We truly appreciate your kind words! Creative writing is indeed a vast and fascinating world with endless opportunities for self-expression 🙂

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How to Write a Creative Brief with Examples and Templates

By Joe Weller | March 5, 2024

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A  creative brief  is a roadmap for teams planning a marketing or advertising campaign, including the objectives, deliverables, and target audience. Strong creative briefs keep team members and external stakeholders aligned as the campaign develops.

  Inside this article, you’ll discover how to write a creative brief , the main elements to include, and downloadable example briefs and templates . Plus, you’ll learn how to use generative AI to help draft a creative brief .

Main Elements of a Creative Brief

Creative briefs should include sections detailing the campaign’s goals, deliverables, style, and target audience. The brief will also have information about the brand and competition in the marketplace.

A project manager for the team requesting the content or a  member of the marketing or advertising team will write a creative brief. The specific sections of a creative brief might vary depending on the project and its stakeholders, but keep these eight main elements in mind:  

  • Brand Identity and Project Overview: The first section of the creative brief provides relevant background information about the brand’s mission and the campaign’s purpose, whether it is responding to pain points or advertising a new product. Summarizing these key details at the outset gives the creative team a focused direction and ensures the campaign fits into the overarching brand identity. 
  • Objectives:  Clearly define goals and be sure to link them to  key performance indicators (KPIs) . Using  SMART  (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound) goals when crafting objectives help you focus on the project and key metrics. 
  • Competitive Analysis: Reviewing examples of recent campaigns from rival brands is a valuable strategy when seeking insight for a creative brief. Analyzing competitors’ strengths and weaknesses sheds light on what resonates with consumers and how to make a campaign stand out in the market.
  • Target Audience:  Creative briefs should boil down which segment of the brand’s audience the campaign will target. Specific demographic profiles help the creative team understand customer behaviors and deliver the most effective and appealing assets.
  • Tone and Style:  Whether defining a personality, listing adjectives that correspond with the core message, or designating a color palette, the creative brief clarifies the attitude and visual identity of the campaign. Designers need direction on the desired voice and style to ensure a unified final project that speaks to the target audience.
  • Content Format and Deliverables:  Every creative brief must outline the specific content that the creative team needs to produce, such as social media assets, print advertisements, graphics, video content, online copy, or other elements of the campaign strategy. Include any format requirements or other specifications, so that the creative team can align their output with the campaign objectives.
  • Timeline and Budget:  Stipulating key deadlines, checkpoints, and budget requirements enables the creative team to deliver on target. This information is crucial when working with external agencies, for whom the brief can function like a contract. Concrete schedule parameters give project managers details that they can follow up, warding off scope creep. Learn  how to manage scope creep  and keep projects on track.
  • Stakeholders:  Briefs should include the contact details and roles for all the team members who will be involved in the project. Establishing individual responsibilities and review processes ensures internal and external stakeholders can communicate seamlessly throughout the process.

How to Write a Creative Brief

Writing a creative brief starts with gathering the information that will guide a campaign’s direction. Begin with a focused overview of the project and include concrete details on your objectives, audience, and deliverables.

A strong creative brief is clear, specific, and short. Think of it as a blueprint to inspire creativity and keep your team on track from ideation through delivery and execution. Consider using  creative brief templates  to save time and maintain consistency across multiple projects.  For branding campaigns or launches, a more specialized  brand brief  might be necessary. 

1. Gather Information and Resources  

Before you start writing, do the prep work for your brief. This might include researching competitors, analyzing pain points, meeting with stakeholders, and referencing past campaigns. Use this information to finalize your core message, target audience, and objectives.  

Once you have a clear idea of the campaign, gather the necessary supporting documents. Compile links to important resources, such as a brand style guide, digital asset library, and any example content for the creative team to reference.  

2. Decide What to Include  

The details of the campaign, stakeholders, and objectives will determine which elements of the creative brief are necessary. For example, internal team members might not need comprehensive information about your brand mission. Or you might include a budget for advertising campaigns, but not for designing a new website banner.

Keep in mind that the creative brief should be concise and focus on the creative direction of the campaign. If you need to determine a comprehensive marketing and distribution strategy, consider completing a  marketing strategy brief first.   

3. Name the Campaign and Write an Overview   

Naming the project is a simple first step to streamline communication. The campaign name should point to its core message — the idea, consumer benefit, or call to action (CTA) — the creative team needs to get across with their assets.  

Start by writing an overview that defines the core message in a few sentences. Consider including relevant brand identity aspects or drafting a short section with brand and product background. Establish why you are launching this campaign, the opportunities or challenges, and the takeaways for your audience. 

Connor Butterworth

“For example, in our creative brief for a new rug collection launch, we highlighted our rugs’ unique designs inspired by Southwestern traditions and their high-quality sustainable materials. Conveying these key points up front allows designers and copywriters to center their creativity around the communication of these distinguishing factors,” offers  Connor Butterworth , CEO and Owner of  Southwestern Rugs Depot . 

4. Set Clear Objectives

Highlight one or two goals for the campaign that align with its core message. Be sure to define the KPIs you will use to measure success. Common campaign objectives include boosting engagement, increasing conversions, and communicating a specific call to action or desired consumer behavior.   

advertising creative brief objectives example

5. Analyze the Competition

Survey the competitive landscape for real-world models. Focus on a few major competitors and provide examples of their recent campaigns for similar products. Highlight key successes and failures to learn from, and create a list of the ways in which your brand or product differs.  

Elaine Chen

Elaine Chen , Founder of marketing consultancy Excogita, advises, “Creatives understand that not every project will immediately hit the mark, but they need feedback to get to the right place. Spend time looking at competing campaigns so that you have concrete ideas about what you feel will and won't work, and share some of these insights in your brief.”

6. Define the Demographic

Determine a primary target audience for the campaign. Are you trying to reach a segment of the current brand audience or potential new customers? Break down your target audience with demographic data — such as age, gender, and geographic location — as well as buying behaviors and psychographic information, such as preferences and interests. 

Instead of listing all the aspects of your target audience, use profiles or personas to draw a precise portrait of your customer in a couple sentences. Learn  how to create customer profiles  to better understand your audience with individualized buyer personas.  

creative brief demographics example

7. Explain the Tone

Choose several adjectives that describe an attitude or personality for the campaign. Align this personality with the key message, cater it to your target audience, and fit it within your brand identity. Include links to any brand style guidelines or designated fonts and color palettes.

Should graphics feel sophisticated and minimalistic or playful and energetic? Is the tone authentic and empowering or confident and provocative? The adjectives you choose will guide both the visual direction and voice of your campaign, keeping all the elements of the project cohesive.

8. Designate Deliverables

Determine what assets or content the creative team needs to produce to meet the campaign objectives. Specify the content format, the number of deliverables, and any requirements or specifications, such as image dimensions or character limits. You might mention your distribution strategy if modified versions of the assets will be needed for different platforms.

9. Walk Through the Timeline and Budget

Working backward from the campaign launch date, determine when assets need to be delivered in order to be reviewed by key stakeholders and released on schedule. Fill in important due dates, review periods, meetings, and final approval deadlines leading up to the release date. If the creative team will be producing video content or multichannel advertising campaigns, establish a budget.

10. Present to Stakeholders

Share the completed brief with all the stakeholders involved, from the creatives who will be producing the content to the executives who will approve final designs. The creative team might consist of in-house designers and marketers, or it could be an external agency. Consider including a project manager to track deadlines and deliverables. Project managers can create a separate  project brief  to summarize high-level details.

Whether you present the brief at a  project kickoff meeting or distribute it electronically, be open to feedback. The creative team might have questions on the timeline, resources, tone, or approval process. The marketing director could help you fine-tune the target audience and core message. Refine the brief if necessary before you share the final version. Make sure everyone understands the direction of the project and their responsibilities.

Examples of Creative Briefs

These creative brief examples use variations on the basic creative brief template to communicate specific project details to stakeholders. These downloadable and customizable templates include example copy for a variety of creative brief scenarios.

Simple Creative Brief Example Template

Simple Creative Brief Example Template

Download the Simple Creative Brief Example Template for Microsoft Word

Download the Simple Creative Brief Blank Template for Microsoft Word

Here’s an example of a creative brief for a marketing campaign designed in-house. This short creative brief template keeps a tight focus on the project itself — and doesn’t waste time providing unnecessary context.

Client Creative Brief Example Template

Client Creative Brief Example Template

Download the Client Creative Brief Example Template for Microsoft Word

Download the Client Creative Brief Blank Template for Microsoft Word

This example shows how a creative brief might be completed for implementing a marketing campaign with an agency. There is more information about the client — the brand, project message, and call to action — while leaving room for the creative team to innovate. 

Graphic Design Creative Brief Example Template

Graphic Design Creative Brief Example Template

Download the Graphic Design Creative Brief Example Template for Microsoft Word

Download the Graphic Design Creative Brief Blank Template for Microsoft Word

Here’s an example of a creative brief for a graphic design project that is perfect for solo graphic designers or graphic design firms planning projects in collaboration with their clients. The simple, adaptable layout has room for details on image requirements and design elements, as well as direction about the project. 

For more elaborate design projects — such as a logo design or product design — consider using a specific  design brief .

Advertising Creative Brief Example Template

Advertising Creative Brief Example Template

Download the Advertising Creative Brief Example Template for Microsoft Word

Download the Advertising Creative Brief Blank Template for Microsoft Word

This creative brief example uses a straightforward advertising campaign template to cover objective, tone, messaging, target audience, and non-negotiables. There are also key advertising elements needed for the campaign. 

What to Keep in Mind When Writing a Creative Brief for Internal Use vs. an Agency

Creative briefs are a campaign’s starting point for both in-house teams and agencies. The project’s stakeholders will determine the brief’s content. Both internal and external creative teams need information about the campaign’s message, but agencies might need more brand details.

Internal creative briefs are often short and direct, since the stakeholders will bring their understanding of the brand and its identity to the project. Internal creative teams might already be familiar with style guidelines, recent campaigns, and customer personas. It’s still important to include focused direction specific to the campaign objectives, but the brief can be more informal and flexible.

Shri Ganeshram

Creative briefs shared with external agencies, on the other hand, are often more extensive. CEO and Founder of  Awning.com Shri Ganeshram recommends crafting a “more detailed and structured brief” when working with an agency. “It has to convey the essence of your brand and project requirements without any assumed knowledge,” he continues. “When I worked with an external design agency for our marketing campaign, the detailed brief we provided helped them grasp our brand ethos quickly, resulting in a highly successful campaign.”

As a marketing executive with both in-house and agency experience, Chen points out that projects that are contracted out might also require more comprehensive briefs. “Many companies are only working with agencies on high-profile or very strategic assignments such as major advertising campaigns, creating new brands, or significant rebrands. Accordingly, the briefs will need to include lots of insights about the product and audience, while avoiding being too prescriptive to give the agency room to innovate.”

Additionally, while both internal and agency creative briefs typically include deliverables and deadlines, these stipulations might carry more weight externally. In his experience working with agencies, Ganeshram explains, “The creative brief acts as a contract of sorts that outlines what the client expects, providing a clear framework within which the agency operates. This distinction is crucial for ensuring both parties have aligned expectations.” 

Pitfalls to Avoid When Writing a Creative Brief

An effective creative brief empowers designers, advertisers, or marketers to deliver original and compelling content. On the other hand, vague or complicated briefs make it impossible for creative teams to meet expectations. Avoiding these pitfalls streamlines the creative process.  

There are five common pitfalls to keep in mind when writing creative briefs:  

Ambiguity:   

Kristien Matelski

A vague direction can make it impossible for the creative team to understand the vision for the campaign. Provide specific information about the tone and message, as well as clear guidelines for the format of the final product. “If you leave anything up for interpretation, then you risk the result not being what you expected,” advises Kristien Matelski, Content/PR Manager at  Vizion Interactive . “I’ve found that a few good examples are much more valuable than just describing what I’m looking for.”

  • Overprescription: Conversely, including too much detail can limit creativity and overwhelm the core message. Designers, copywriters, and other creatives need freedom to bring their own expertise and imagination to the project. “While detailed background information is always helpful, realize that you can only convey so much in a single communication,” Chen notes. “Avoid requiring your creative team to fold in too many messages or else you could end up with a garbled mess.”
  • Broad or Unspecified Audience: It’s crucial to define a target audience with as much detail as possible. Large campaigns might have primary and secondary markets, but to create effective assets, the team needs to have a specific audience in mind and understand their behaviors. “Too often companies are so focused on what they have to say that they end up failing to incorporate customer perspectives and create a message that just falls flat,” cautions Chen.
  • Unrealistic Expectations:  The purpose of a creative brief is to keep stakeholders’ expectations and responsibilities aligned throughout the project’s development. However, if the brief sets impossibly tight deadlines or unattainable objectives, creatives won’t be able to deliver compelling results.
  • Complicated CTA:  Campaigns work best with a simple and clear core message or desired outcome. Creative briefs that fail to develop a clear call to action result in campaigns that can’t meet their objectives. Chen adds, “It's most realistic to ask consumers to do just one easy thing after seeing your ads. A complicated, multistep process or a confusing mix of options is doomed to fail.”

How to Use Generative AI to Write a More Effective Brief

Recent advancements in generative AI have made it a powerful tool for crafting creative briefs. AI can analyze pain points and customer data, suggest relevant core messages, and elevate directions on tone and style. Think of the AI as a partner or assistant when drafting your prompts, and be prepared to finetune the results.

“Generative AI can be a game-changer for crafting creative briefs in marketing and advertising,” observes Peter Wood, CTO at  Spectrum Search . “It's essential to leverage AI for initial idea generation. By feeding the AI system with your campaign’s objectives and target audience demographics, you can get a diverse range of creative concepts and narratives, which might not be immediately obvious to a human team.”

You can also use AI to assist in data analysis when researching your competitors and establishing customer personas. Wood continues, “This analysis can inform the tone, style, and content of your brief, ensuring it is aligned with what resonates with your audience.”  

Peter Wood

“As a content manager, I’ve found that creative briefs have been a primary use for AI,” reveals Kristien Matelski. To get the best results from the AI, she recommends providing it with background information about your brand and objectives, as well as detailed instructions for the content you want it to generate. Keep revising and updating your prompts as you work, and make sure to verify any facts or data in your results. 

Here are four tips to keep in mind when utilizing AI to draft your creative brief:  

  • Pretend the AI Is Your Assistant:  AI is not a search engine, and it can handle more complex directions. “Be as detailed as possible with what you want, like you’re giving instructions to an assistant to write a brief or outline for you,” suggests Matelski.
  • Provide Background:  Feed the AI relevant information about the brand, product, or campaign objectives. Matelski says, “I generally start by giving the AI some context about the who, or the company we are generating a creative brief for, including a link to their website. Then I tell it the what that we’re creating, a creative brief or outline for a new product page.”
  • Include Specifics:  If you are using a template, make sure to list the fields you want the AI to generate. Establish any requirements and important campaign directives to include in the brief. As an example, Matelski offers, “Be sure to mention X, Y, Z brand names, color choices, and keywords.”
  • Edit, Edit, Edit:  Once the AI has generated the brief, read through the results and determine next steps. “You’ll need to edit yourself or go back and forth with the AI a few times to get it how you want it,” Matelski acknowledges. You might ask the AI to condense the overview, suggest a more playful core message, narrow the objectives, or tailor the deliverables for a specific social media platform. Consider whether you need to provide additional information with your instructions.

Improve Your Creative Briefs with Smartsheet for Marketing

The best marketing teams know the importance of effective campaign management, consistent creative operations, and powerful event logistics -- and Smartsheet helps you deliver on all three so you can be more effective and achieve more. 

The Smartsheet platform makes it easy to plan, capture, manage, and report on work from anywhere, helping your team be more effective and get more done. Report on key metrics and get real-time visibility into work as it happens with roll-up reports, dashboards, and automated workflows built to keep your team connected and informed.

When teams have clarity into the work getting done, there’s no telling how much more they can accomplish in the same amount of time. Try Smartsheet for free, today.

Improve your marketing efforts and deliver best-in-class campaigns.

8 mins read

Resume for Creative Writer(s): How to Make a Creative Writer Resume

Build a creative writing resume by following a few simple steps. Examples included.

Image of Shreya Bose

Shreya Bose

Written by Shreya Bose , edited by Protim Bhaumik , reviewed by Eric Hauch .

11. Mar 2024 , updated 11. Mar 2024

Preview image of Resume for Creative Writer(s): How to Make a Creative Writer Resume

A creative writer resume will, by nature, be different from resumes in more corporate professions. After all, it's got the word "creative" in it.

Whatever your chosen form of creative writing, you need to build a resume to showcase your writing and content creation skills. Additionally, your writing samples and work experience should be completely accessible from a single content writing website — your writing portfolio.

In this article, however, I will focus on the creative writing resume. This resume guide will explore the types of creative writers who need a resume, tips to create a resume that best represents you as a content writer and creative writer resume samples that will inspire you to write a resume that stands out in the best possible way.

Creative content creators who need a creative writer resume

An author's resume is tricky because you can only build it after having published several books. It wouldn't make sense for me to provide a writer resume example with only one publication, because it says nothing about the author's sustained writing experience, writing style, or professional experience. One or two publications count as " little to no experience."

If you have not published more than a couple of books, your "resume" should be your portfolio (containing your creative writing pieces), author website, and social media content. They do a much better job of conveying your expertise.

Creative content writer

This includes long-form copy and more succinct copywriting, whether it be your full-time job or freelance gig.

The content of your resume will be common for both: list of employers, educational backgrounds, skills, and achievements. Both these resumes can be tailored to address a specific job description, and must ideally be accompanied by a solid writing portfolio. There is no better way to demonstrate your writing skills.

Scriptwriters, screenwriters, playwrights

What's more creative than the stage or screen? If you create plays, shows, or movies, your resume should have plenty to talk about. List all your writing projects, employers, show/play success rates, and awards, if you have any (hopefully plenty).

If you have worked on well-known productions consistently, you can get by with just a resume and no portfolio. But that requires your work to be known by name to all/most of your potential employers (for example, you've worked on the set of The Big Bang Theory).

Until you have reached that point in your career, it is wise to create a portfolio or creative writing website to back up the claims in your resume.

Your Creative Writer Resume Template: Essential Elements

A professional summary of your work experience.

This is what the client will see right after your name on your professional resume. In about 2 to 4 sentences, mention your top skills, professional experience and achievements. This is the client's first introduction to you before they scan your entire writer's resume for information.

The primary function of a writer's resume is to create a positive impression of your skills and achievements in the employers' eyes. The summary is your first and most opportune moment to do that.

If you've read the job description, you'll get an idea of what the client wants in their ideal employee. Tweak the resume summary to appeal to those qualities. For example, if they are looking for someone with writing skills and a working knowledge of SEO, start your summary with something like: "SEO writer with 5+ years of experience in the B2B market."

List of skills pertaining to creative writing

Define the range of your writing skills. Use terms like "freelance writer," "beauty content writer," "video game reviewer," "scriptwriter for feature films," etc. Talk about what you specifically have brought to your writing projects and writing role.

Outside of just writing, clients also look for relevant skills — research, an understanding of SEO, the ability to interact with SMEs, and so on. So, be very clear about your skills and experience.

While your creativity is the very thing that gets you hired, keep the resume as straightforward as possible, especially in the skills section. You'll have room to be creative on your writing portfolio.

Work experience

This is the lengthiest and most important part of the resume. List all your previous roles and jobs, and lead with your achievements at every job: "wrote 50 articles that led to a 40% increase in website traffic within 6 months," for example. Make your resume about your specific impact on the job.

Statements like this showcase your relevant experience and level of expertise. Your experience as a creative writer is best represented by the kind of stories you have worked on. If you're trained other people, put that up front and center. Clearly highlight job titles, employers, job tenures, and duties for each role.

Education & achievements

Mention your college degree(s), especially if it’s in related fields like English, journalism, or some other humanities. Degrees in marketing or communication also go a long way in raising your employability.

Depending on what hiring managers require, you should mention your grades, college/university name/scholarships, etc. If you have won any awards or accolades, include them on your resume.

A great resume should also mention certifications in related courses like SEO, business writing, and industry-specific creative writing.

Creative Writer Resume Examples

Jessica clair (professional resume).

5 examples of creative writing

I found this creative writer resume example on livecareer.com . It’s similar to my own resume format and contains all the essential information you need to communicate with the employer. Note that despite carrying a lot of information, it does not look cluttered. If you write and edit content, you know how essential an uncluttered, organized textual arrangement is for the reader's comfort.

Alicia Santos (depicting top skills via clever design)

5 examples of creative writing

This one is from resumebuilder.com . Notice the use of two colors and the unconventional content structuring choices. While there is no one right way to format a creative writing resume, a bit of visual appeal never goes wrong. If you can imbibe simple but effective design elements like this throughout your resume, it will help your resume stand out to potential employers.

Of course, you'll need a resume builder to put together such a document. My personal favorite is Canva.

Nina Owusu (an effective resume summary)

5 examples of creative writing

The source for this is standout-cv.com . Notice the resume summary in particular. In about 5 lines, the writer's professional experience is deftly summarized. The summary gives clients plenty to go on and helps quickly scan your resume for relevant information.

Bonus tips to AMP up your creative writing resume

Tailor your resume for each client and job description.

One of the best skills you can acquire is to match your resume to a job description.

When sending your work history, rearrange or reword it to appeal to the client. I've offered an example before: play up the skills that directly impact your chances of getting this job. As far as possible, echo some of the words in the job description in your work history to send across a targeted and impactful resume.

At the end of the day, every employer is looking for a writer who instantly "gets it." The best way to become that writer is to relate the resume for each job description.

By echoing the language of the job description, you'll encourage positive associations with your resume in their minds.

Proofread your resume

You can't create compelling content with typos all over the place. If your resume is not pristine in its language, you won't even be able to showcase your writing in your portfolio. Your turn will be over immediately.

Before you submit a resume, proofread it three times. Eliminate all spelling errors, grammatical mistakes, and formatting inconsistencies. Have a friend proofread after you've done so. The errors will always show up easily for a second pair of eyes.

Always send the resume with the portfolio

Do this even if the clients do not specifically ask for it. Employers want to see where you've worked and then gauge the quality of your content writing. For example, if you are applying for a copywriting position, send your copywriting sample when you apply for the job. Always showcase your writing samples by default. Don't wait for the client to email/call back and ask for it.

This might sound like common knowledge, but it was a common mistake I (and quite a few of my peers) made in my early career days.

Authory: a dedicated portfolio builder that does most of the work

A great resume must be accompanied by an excellent portfolio to showcase your writing samples. You already know how to create your great resume. This section will introduce you to a tool that helps you set up a portfolio to demonstrate your writing. While there are many portfolio builders out there, Authory stands out by building your portfolio for you.

Yes, you read that right.

When you sign up for an Authory account (for free), you get the following:

A self-updating portfolio (no need to keep adding new work manually)

Authory will AUTOMATICALLY import a copy of every bylined piece from every site into its own database. You don't have to track down links to your published work (especially older pieces). As long as you remember the URL of the site where your work exists, Authory will collate all your content for you in one dashboard.

Automated backups (never lose your content, ever)

All the content that Authory imports from different sources is saved permanently. Even if the original website where it's published goes defunct for any reason, you'll always have a copy safely stored on Authory's server. All backups are in the original format — text and/or media. No screenshots.

Continued importing of past and future content (less effort for a 100% updated portfolio)

Once you enter a source, Authory won't just import your existing publications. Anything you publish on the same site (after you've fed its URL into Authory) in the future will also be imported automatically. In other words, Authory will import your past and future content.

Authory also sends email notifications for every new piece it imports, so you'll always know if something you submitted has been published.

Get started with Authory for free and see for yourself what works for you!

Seasoned writer & editor working with B2B & B2C content since 2017. Writes about music on weekends. Trying to overcome caffeine addiction.

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COMMENTS

  1. 21 Top Examples of Creative Writing

    An example of creative writing, a novella is essentially the love child of a short story and a novel. Although the novella does feature a plot, the plot is typically less complicated compared to that of a novel. Usually novellas are about 50 pages. 21. Genre Writing.

  2. 10 Types of Creative Writing (with Examples You'll Love)

    A lot falls under the term 'creative writing': poetry, short fiction, plays, novels, personal essays, and songs, to name just a few. By virtue of the creativity that characterizes it, creative writing is an extremely versatile art. So instead of defining what creative writing is, it may be easier to understand what it does by looking at ...

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    Read through the following examples to get ideas for your own writing. Make a note of anything that stands out for you. 1. Novels and Novellas. Inspiring novel-writing examples can come from the first paragraph of a well-loved novel (or novella), from the description on the back cover, or from anywhere in the story.

  4. Creative Writing Examples (20 Types for You to Try)

    Authors will often use creative storytelling or creative writing skills to tell engaging, interesting stories, or to convey information in an interesting manner. The Creative Pen by Joanna Penn. The Artist's Road by Patrick Ross. terribleminds by Chuck Wendig.

  5. 8 Creative Writing Examples That Will Spark Your Writing Genius

    Here are some common types of creative writing styles: Fiction: Storytelling with invented characters, plots, and settings across genres like mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, flash fiction and literary fiction. Poetry: Expressive writing using rhyme, meter, and figurative language to convey emotions and imagery, including forms like ...

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    Literary techniques you develop with writing plays and screenplays can include satire, motif, dramatic irony, allusion, and diction. 5. Personal essays. Focusing on the author's life and experiences, a personal essay is a form of creative non-fiction that almost acts as an autobiography.

  7. Creative Writing 101: Everything You Need to Get Started

    This blog post, for example, is not a piece of creative writing as it aims to inform, but a blog post that walks its reader through a first-person narrative of an event could be deemed creative writing. Types of creative writing. Creative writing comes in many forms. These are the most common: Novels Novels originated in the eighteenth century ...

  8. What Is Creative Writing? Types, Techniques, and Tips

    Types of Creative Writing. Examples of creative writing can be found pretty much everywhere. Some forms that you're probably familiar with and already enjoy include: • Fiction (of every genre, from sci-fi to historical dramas to romances) • Film and television scripts. • Songs. • Poetry.

  9. Creative Writing Examples: Lessons in Writing Creative Fiction

    Creative writing can be immensely rewarding both personally and professionally. Good writers who can express their ideas creatively are always in demand, no matter where you live. Writing creatively, however, can take years of practice, not to mention a fair bit of talent. Fortunately, with courses like this novel writing workshop, you can easily learn […]

  10. Creative Writing: 8 Fun Ways to Get Started

    2. Start journaling your days. Another easy way to get started with creative writing is to keep a journal. We're not talking about an hour-by-hour account of your day, but journaling as a way to express yourself without filters and find your 'voice in writing'. If you're unsure what to journal about, think of any daily experiences that ...

  11. Creative Writing: 9 Types For You To Peruse

    1. Novels. There is hardly a 21st-century teenager who hasn't laid their hands on a novel or two. A novel is one of the most well-loved examples of creative writing. It's a fictional story in prose form found in various genres, including romance, horror, Sci-Fi, Fantasy and contemporary.

  12. Creative Writing

    One example of creative writing is fiction writing. Fiction includes traditional novels, short stories, and graphic novels. By definition, fiction is a story that is not true, although it can be ...

  13. 105 Creative Writing Prompts to Try Out

    15 Cool Writing Prompts. #1: List five issues that you're passionate about. Write about them from the opposite point of view (or from the perspective of a character with the opposite point of view). #2: Walk around and write down a phrase you hear (or read). Make a story out of it. #3: Write using no adjectives or adverbs.

  14. 8 Tips for Getting Started With Creative Writing

    8 Tips for Creative Writers. Follow these tips if you want to boost your creativity and improve the way you write: 1. Always be writing. Don't ignore the random ideas that pop into your head. Even bad ideas can inspire good ones, and you never know what will trigger inspiration for a better idea later.

  15. What is Creative Writing? A Key Piece of the Writer's Toolbox

    5 Key Characteristics of Creative Writing. Creative writing is marked by several defining characteristics, each working to create a distinct form of expression: 1. Imagination and Creativity: Creative writing is all about harnessing your creativity and imagination to create an engaging and compelling piece of work. It allows writers to explore ...

  16. Creative Writing Ultimate Guide

    Here's a quick rundown of some types of creative writing you might encounter. 1. Novels. Novels (which fall under the 'fiction' umbrella) are a type of creative writing where the reader follows a character or characters through a plot. A novel might be a standalone, or it might be part of a series. 2.

  17. 100 Creative Writing Prompts for Writers

    100 Creative Writing Prompts for Writers. 1. The Variants of Vampires. Think of an alternative vampire that survives on something other than blood. Write a story or scene based on this character. 2. Spinning the Globe. Imagine that a character did the old spin the globe and see where to take your next vacation trick.

  18. What Is Creative Writing? Simple Definition and Tips

    What is creative writing? The answer can be simple, but breaking it down is far more useful. Learn more and gain some insightful tips for yourself, as well! ... This excerpt from Lewis Carroll's "The Walrus and the Carpenter" is an example of creative writing because it is not based in fact and uses a lot of imagination. If seven maids with ...

  19. What Is Creative Writing? The ULTIMATE Guide!

    The final example of creative writing is twofold; poetry and songs. Both of these formats are similar to one another, relying on creativity to deliver a combination of things. Poetry can take so many forms and styles, but it aims to inspire readers and get them thinking. Poems often have hidden meanings behind them, and it takes a great deal of ...

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  21. Elements of Creative Writing

    This free and open access textbook introduces new writers to some basic elements of the craft of creative writing in the genres of fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. The authors—Rachel Morgan, Jeremy Schraffenberger, and Grant Tracey—are editors of the North American Review, the oldest and one of the most well-regarded literary magazines in the United States.

  22. Exploring the Different Types of Creative Writing

    Type 2: Journals and Diaries. A journal is a written account of an author's experiences, activities, and feelings. A diary is an example of a journal, in which an author documents his/her life frequently. Journals and diaries can be considered creative writing, particularly if they offer more than just a log of events.

  23. How to Write a Creative Brief with Examples and Templates

    How to Write a Creative Brief. Writing a creative brief starts with gathering the information that will guide a campaign's direction. Begin with a focused overview of the project and include concrete details on your objectives, audience, and deliverables. A strong creative brief is clear, specific, and short.

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    Creative Writing Resume Example #3. The source for this is standout-cv.com. Notice the resume summary in particular. In about 5 lines, the writer's professional experience is deftly summarized. The summary gives clients plenty to go on and helps quickly scan your resume for relevant information. Bonus tips to AMP up your creative writing resume

  25. Master the 5 Writing Styles to Engage Your Readers

    Write from a consistent point of view (first, second or third person) and in the same tense (past or present). Incorporate the basic elements of narrative writing, such as characters, plot, setting, theme, and conflict. Take the reader on a journey through the beginning, middle and end of your story.