Are you a book lover? Do you find yourself getting lost in fictional worlds, following the trials and tribulations of make-believe heroes and villains? Or perhaps you’re more interested in collections of short stories? If reading appeals to you, why not give creative writing a shot?
Creative writing courses focus on honing a writer’s skills, allowing them to create vibrant worlds and compelling characters that draw the reader into a narrative. Think you have what it takes to publish a work of your own? Start by exploring some of the best online courses dedicated to the creative writing process.
What Is Creative Writing?
Creative writing is a broad term that applies to any type of writing that does not follow formal restrictions. For example, writing a school essay on Macbeth isn’t creative writing, but writing a science fiction story in your spare time is.
However, creative writing is not limited to fiction. There are many creative nonfiction works out there, such as memoirs, that cleverly bridge the worlds of fiction and nonfiction.
Creative writing isn’t just for long-form authors like Stephen King. It can cover a wide range of forms, like short stories, memoirs, and autobiographies.
What Skills Do You Need to Be a Creative Writer?
Creative writing is much more than just writing a few lines of verse or penning a humorous anecdote. You’re going to need specific skills to succeed. Once you have them, you can market these skills to nearly any job that requires critical thinking, a high level of reading comprehension, and more.
Since creative writing is a broad term, gaining all the necessary skills can be much more complicated than you might initially think.
Here are some crucial skills you will need.
Critical Reading Skills
Reading is an essential skill to proceed in any career. You need to immerse yourself in the written word in order to learn. But how does this help exactly?
Reading is a surefire way to become a better writer. You will become more familiar with narrative techniques, literary tropes, and structures of verse. To become a successful creative writer, you need to be familiar with a few critical aspects of reading and writing. Among them are:
- Points of view
The list goes on, but familiarizing yourself with these concepts will help build your foundation as a creative writer.
Understanding writing techniques when you begin a creative writing workshop or course can allow you to progress more quickly as a writer. There are an enormous amount of writing techniques to learn if you want to become a skilled creative writer.
Knowing basic grammar, plot structure, and characterization techniques are precious pieces of the creative writer’s toolkit.
This is where creative writing skills can transfer over to other daily uses. A creative writer has to be able to communicate well with readers. If you’re a good communicator in real life, you will have a better chance of communicating well through the written word.
Creative Writing Courses: Best Online Classes
But what if you aren’t attending university? There are also some great online courses to choose from. Here are some of the best online creative writing courses:
Want to write like the greats? A MasterClass is a form of education where titans of a particular industry record video lectures to bring you highly-sought-after knowledge. In the writing courses from MasterClass, you can find a wide range of authors divulging their knowledge, personal writing techniques, and more.
If you want to learn from some of the most prolific names in writing, like Neil Gaiman, Malcolm Gladwell, or Bob Woodward, then a MasterClass course will be right up your alley.
One key to an intriguing novel or short story is the opening scene. But how do you effectively write an opening that readers will remember? It’s tougher than you might think. The opening scene must set the tempo for the rest of the story and inform the reader what they’re in for, stylistically.
This fiction writing course from Skillshare, taught by New York Times bestselling author Daniel José Older, educates creative writers on how to produce a stunning and memorable opening scene.
This course by Udemy is designed to help you start that big creative writing project you have always wanted to tackle, and will imbue you with essential skills to get going.
This creative writing course deals with fiction and nonfiction. It emphasizes the importance of world-building, punctuation, sentence structure, and all the other skills you will need before you pen that project you’ve had stewing.
The prerequisites for this creative writing course are simply a rudimentary understanding of the English language, a PC or Mac, and a word processing program.
Conclusion: Be Creative to Further Your Writing Career
These online writing courses will provide even the most reluctant creative writer with a skill set that can help bring you success in other professions. Writing techniques and communication skills transcend novel and short story writing. When applying for jobs, employers will be impressed by your ability to think, read, and write critically.
Whatever form of creative writing you choose for yourself, these courses can prove to be a boon to your professional and personal growth.