Despite having limitless imagination, students find it difficult when it comes to creative writing. They see their imagination as a dried-up desert with scarce or no ideas or thought to articulate in words.
Why such inertness of imagination?
Fortunately, the famine in the desert of creative minds can be cured, if creative writing is taught effectively, the imagination would be with creative ideas waiting for its manifestation.
Some strategies and tips are listed here that will help them in their creative writing process.
1. Generate prompts that inspire student
The teachers should create inspiring and original prompts such as original memories, for instance, ask students to write about some inspirational moments they can never forget.
Ask them to write about imaginative scenarios, or about writing familiar text especially mentor text given by their mentors. e.g., to write an alternative end to their favorite story.
Give them lead-in sentences such as Ooh, tell me more…. These sentences are enticing and set the tone and direction of their creative writing.
2. Dig deeper into the prompts
Teach your students that how they can dig deeper and unpack the prompts for more engaging and creative ideas.
Digging deeper can be done with probing questions, for instance:
“When I looked at her, I was amazed. Somehow next day …”
Now you can ask questions to the students about what happened the next day?
What made him so amazed to see her?
This way you are subtly pushing students to probe deeper and think beyond the lines.
3. Warm-up writing activities
One of the warm-up activities can be freewriting. Give time about 10 minutes or so to students to pour out all the ideas onto the page and not to worry about grammar and spelling.
This kind of warm-up activity allows students to have a better and clear idea of their interests. It builds skills that help them to fix their uncertainties in their writing.
4. Planning of the scattered ideas
After jotting down all the raw ideas, the next step is to place all these ideas together and formulate a plan. This becomes a roadmap for the writing process.
5. Produce rough drafts
Having a plan ready, students are now ready to take the plunge into writing their first draft. But before they get started, tell them what a draft should look like.
A draft should suppose to be messy, and a work in progress.
Students need to be reminded that if they wait for perfect words to come to them, the outcome will be blank pages. They should be brave enough to take some writing risks and be imperfect.
6. Peer feedback is important
Feedback from the peer is a constructive way that allows students to have more ideas about how to improve their writing by assessing each other’s clarity, ideas, and use of language.
7. The editing stages
With a draft ready and feedback in hand, students now need to go over it and brush it with the final touches. For editing and proof-reading paper writer can be hired for professional advice.
At this stage, it is important for the readers to go through their creative writing with a scrutinizing eye.