By: Nicholas Rubright
Find Your Creativity
“Everyone is born creative; everyone is given a box of crayons in kindergarten. Then when you hit puberty they take the crayons away and replace them with dry, uninspiring books on algebra, history, etc. Being suddenly hit years later with the ‘creative bug’ is just a wee voice telling you, ‘I’d like my crayons back, please, to draw and write.” ―
Prolific sci-fi writer Isaac Asimov once said writing was simply thinking through his fingers. Apparently, Asimov’s thoughts were sufficient to fuel a portfolio including “I, Robot” and at least 499 other works.
In other words, good writing depends on what you’re thinking. And good thinking is sparked by creativity.
Why Is Creativity Important?
The best-written works — whether fiction or nonfiction — invite the reader into a new world. Write in a truly immersive way, and your reader will forget what they were doing and be pulled into the same world as you. This world can change your reader, and they can walk away having learned something new.
Your mind has to live there if you’re going to create this new world.
If what you’re writing is bland, monotone, or emotionless, or if it’s too similar to what’s been read or written before, then you can’t expect it to leave a lasting impression on your reader — nor can you expect them to want to spend much time in it.
The thought-word pathway flows both ways. Creativity improves your writing skills, but writing also enhances your creativity.
Even if you don’t expect to make a cent off your writing, you may still want to dabble in journaling or write some fiction. The creative boost that results will likely have pleasant downstream effects.
Here are six habits to boost your creativity so you can write your best.
1. Stay Healthy
A creative mind is a healthy mind, and a healthy mind usually resides in a healthy body. As a writer, your vocation may not be all that physically demanding, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect your health!
Consider taking up walking, hiking, or cycling to stay active throughout the day.
Something as simple as walking might not seem to have much power — but the luminaries of years past walked up to 10 miles a day for a reason. Einstein was so firm in his walking habit that he had to repeatedly turn down drivers who offered him rides during his years at Harvard.
2. Establish a Daily Routine
While staying healthy is a concept of almost universal importance, what it takes to maintain health will likely be much more individual to you. Some people write better in the morning; others sip espresso till midnight and do their best work in those dark and quiet hours. What counts is that you ritualize your routine in a way that serves you.
Finding your ideal routine can take trial and error, but that’s normal, so don’t sweat it. It may also take some discipline.
It took essayist Sloane Crosley a while to figure out the rules she set for herself when adjusting to life as a full-time writer. To fight the sometimes structureless nature of life without a day job, she forbade herself from checking email before a particular time or from running errands during the day. And she set a goal for how much she had to write every day.
3. Use Natural Mood-Boosters
Our brains are fickle things. In addition to being total energy hogs, they require a complex orchestrated stream of hormones to function (a.k.a. think) their best.
Taking natural substances known as nootropics may help with that. One of the most popular nootropics is a beverage called coffee; ever heard of that? Other popular nootropics include CBD flowers, B vitamins, and mushrooms like reishi and lion’s mane. If you want to write your best, don’t discount the possibility that these substances could help you.
4. Keep Things Fresh
If you’ve ever tried to hit a specific daily word count — say 1,000, 5,000, or even 10,00 words — then you probably understand that writing can be taxing.
One way to avoid the mental burnout that comes with writing full-time is by keeping things fresh. The best way to do that is to take breaks.
Consider breaking up long chunks of writing time with walks, runs, or any of those other little rituals we mentioned earlier. Even something as short as a five-minute break can recharge your creative batteries and let you come back to the task at hand stronger than before.
5. Learn From the Best
Whether you’re at Writing 101 or you’re polishing off your 50th novel, diving into works of the masters will always be one of the best ways to improve. The creativity of Shakespeare or the clarity of Hemingway will always have something to teach you. Read enough great works, and you might find some of that greatness beginning to rub off.
Music producer Rick Rubin said that instead of consuming today’s most popular media and trying to compete with it, immerse yourself in the greatest works of all time, no matter the medium. Going to art museums, reading excellent novels and poetry, or watching a great movie helps him write better songs.
Use the inspiration of other artists in your craft by surrounding yourself with the best of the best. If you want to create great work, it makes no sense to be inspired by anyone else.
6. Outsource Your Editing
For many writers, writing is the easy part. Transforming an inspired stream of thoughts into words can be a blessed process where the hours fly by — you’re in the zone!
The editing process that must happen next, however, is usually much less graceful. In the past, writers had to hire pricey editors to hone their work, and editors still play an essential role today.
But outsourcing your editing has become easier than ever in recent years. Platforms like Fiverr and Upwork can connect you with more affordable editors, and AI-driven writing assistants are bridging the formerly huge gap between a traditional grammar checker and a human editor.
Using any or all of the six tips means you can focus on what you do best — writing creatively and purposefully. So, take that walk, minimize your distractions, or have a healthy snack – then write.
Bio: Nicholas Rubright
Nicholas Rubright is a communications specialist at Writer. In his free time, Nicholas enjoys playing guitar, writing music, and building cool things on the internet.
His other passion is helping musicians move forward in their careers by gaining knowledge about how marketing works and helping them pick out the best equipment for their musical needs. Find marketing and help for the musicians in your life at Dozmia Blog.
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