Tag: Creative Writing

Creative. Writing (Pt. II)

“All writers are copycats, unless they’re bad writers.  Then they’re plagiarists.”
– My writing professor
 
 
 A sample of my writing classes offerings from last night. 
You called?

1) The Unintended Romance:  one person turned in a piece that had a paragraph including the words “the sun delicately kissing her skin,” “white teeth flashed in his olive-skinned face,” and “thick muscles and strong torso flexed as he picked her up.” 

The teacher asked us all to review it and determine what was wrong with the paragraph.  Some people said that some alliteration threw them off, other said it was an imagery technique.  I said it sounded more like ripped-bodices-and-heaving-bosoms writing than what she was going for (a murder mystery).  It’s good she and I get along because half of the class gasped/blushed and murmured things like, “Oh dear!” while she burst out laughing.

This seems...oddly familiar...?

2)  Teen Angst:  Another girl (a rather rude one who has to have the last word in every group review we do, and likes to toss her editing experience in people’s teeth) turned in a piece that took place in a high school science class between a completely uninteresting girl and a boy acting strangely and awkwardly, seeming tormented by a secret pain.  My pal (the bodice ripper) piped up immediately and said one word: Twilight?”

The whole room dissolved into hysterics and debate.  Some people tittered quietly to themselves while one or two started roaring about how amazing the Twilight series was and everyone else wouldn’t know great literature if it smacked them in the face!  Others countered that it was adolescent fiction and no more, while some snapped that young adult writers have produced some first-rate literature, though not Twilight they hurried to say.  The writer was mortified, while our teacher seemed secretly delighted.

Creative. Writing.

“And by the way, everything is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it and the imagination to improvise.  The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”
– Slyvia Platt

I’m in a bit of a bind, darlings.  I signed up for a creative writing class this semester(after work hours so Chief can’t quash it) both to get me back into the school mindset and to make me start writing again.  I’ve lapsed of late, so I thought this would be a great way to spur me on a bit.  I got good and excited for the class and then I walked in on the first day and immediately realized Creative Writing was not going to be a comfortable class for me.

See, I want to be a writer.  Most of the (mostly freshman) class want to be creative

This is not the same thing at all.  When we shared what our favorite books are most of the class said Twilight (blech and sigh) or named a fantasy series of some type or another.  Then when we went around talking of what we wanted to do with our writing almost everyone said poetry, a couple said songwriting.  

Appropriately artistic and moody writer.

My teacher is a poet as well, but talking about “snow melting like a woman crying” and trying to bring “the magic and mysteries of the cosmos to the page” is not really…what I do.  He gave a long, rambling lecture about how he wants us to create art, ART (said in a rolling voice with a dramatic fist shake towards the skies), and that’s what he expects.  I immediately blanched.

Inappropriately chipper and fairly happy C.

Now, I think I may be a talented writer  but by no means do I think I’m a Great Writer (I’d paraphrase an evaluation of someone I heard once and say that I’m mediocre with flashes of brilliance).  Mostly I just like to tell a good story.  To be honest, I’d have to say that my sense of humor is probably what makes my writing at all readable, but I have a feeling that humor in this class would not go over well.  So, whilst I was floundering in this sea of doubt, my teacher volunteered me to write a piece for class this coming tuesday.  I have to submit it by email tonight to be ripped to bloody shreds by the rest of my artistic and suffering classmates in peer evaluation. 

Of course, I probably shouldn’t tease them so much because this assignment plunged me into a pit of despair and I wandered about in a pretty artistic slump of my own for a couple days as I was seized with Writer’s Block and whined about the lack of poetry in my soul.  Not that I’d ever want to write it, but that I’m shallow enough to want to impress my teacher.

Quick, someone tell me to suck it up and get to work!  I’ve been telling myself for three days but my inner wanna-be-writer is actually pretty fragile and seems to be ignoring me out of fear of scathing peer reviews.  Or the realization that I’m not actually any good.  Yikes.