Sheila's Motto

"Endeavor to enhance the lives of others through education and encouragement."

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Writing Techniques - Creativity


It's hard to imagine from looking at the above picture that it's the first step to a poem, movie or television script, novel, novella, short story, song, memoir, personal essay or speech.

Creative writing is defined as "any writing that goes outside the bounds of normal professional, journalistic, academic, or technical forms of literature, typically identified as an emphasis on narrative, character development, and the use of literary tropes or with various traditions of poetry and poetics." []

Before we proceed further, we should probably address the whole "left brain - right brain" issue as well. 

"People who identify as left-brain thinkers might feel that they have strong math and logic skills. Those who profess to be right-brain thinkers, on the other hand, feel that their talents are more on the creative side of things.  Given the popularity of the idea of 'right brained' and 'left brained' thinkers, it might surprise you to learn that this idea is just one of many myths about the brain."  [Chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=what%20side%20of%20the%20brain%20is%20the%20creative%20side]

"The left side of the brain is responsible for controlling the right side of the body.  It also performs tasks that have to do with logic, such as in science and mathematics.  On the other hand, the right hemisphere coordinates the left side of the body, and performs tasks that have to do with creativity and the arts." []

The last time I checked the initials Dr. were not in front of my name, and M.D. did not follow my last name.  Those would apply to the first born of The Tribe of Wood.  However, in checking my family trees on both sides, I made the wonderful discovery of branches containing authors and poets.

I marvel that our Creator has given us the gift of creating written works for the enjoyment of mankind.  Creativity is the gold of the writer's life. Just as the price of pure gold has fluctuated over the decades, there can be times in our writing journeys when we may feel that we have penned something far more valuable than at other times.  We may be surprised to learn later that what we deemed of little value was of great assistance or enjoyment to a reader in a far away land. 

What are some ideas that you have implemented when you find your creativity waning or wanting to take a vacation? Don't get me wrong as I am in favor of vacations ~~ just not of the permanent variety!  

Here are some helpful hints I have used to get my creative juices flowing when necessary:

  • I look through my container of handy dandy quotes, pictures, poetry, etc. that I continually collect.
  • Read short passages from a completely different genre.
  • Take a stroll up and down the aisles of our local book store(s) to drink in the titles, cover designs, and so forth.
  • Dial up a brainstorming session with a trusted fellow author who won't just tell me what I want to hear, but who will offer constructive criticism and boatloads of encouragement.
  • Give the passage a rest for a short while. When I return to it, I imagine that I am a total stranger reading the description or portion of writing as opposed to being the one authoring it.
  • Watch an old movie without offensive language or scenes.

I am presently penning Book Two of The Sabblonti Series which is the fictional saga of several cattle barons and their spreads located in the high desert mountain regions.  Macey Meadows, a nurse at the rural hospital, needed a description, so here's what I imagined she would look like:

"Dr. Shaw was struck with Macey’s milky white teeth showcased inside her lovely pomegranate tinted lips, her olive complexion, high cheekbones, and intense emerald green eyes.  He glanced down at her left hand which revealed no jewelry.  Then again, some nurses do not wear their wedding rings while on shift.  Oh, could he possibly start to get his hopes up once again only to be dashed?  Hope deferred makes the heart sick."

What happens to the country veterinarian and the lovely nurse?  Stay tuned to find out!

My encouragement for your writing journey is to continue writing.  Do what works for you and share your ideas with fellow authors.

Meanwhile back at the ranch, it's encouraging to know that some of the "left brain folks" enjoy reading the creations of the "right brain folks" or however that actually works.

Happy Reading, spend some of that "creative gold" on others, and Write On!

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