Tips for Developing Creative Stories

Woman writing in notebook
Photo by lilartsy from Unsplash.

Writing is an art form that I’ve gravitated toward my whole life. It can give one clarity and insight into someone’s own life, or allow them to dive into the possibilities of creating original stories. As I’ve established my place as a journalist for this newspaper, I’ve taken a liking to writing fictional stories as well.

To develop some research on the subject, I asked my grandmother about strategies writers can use to flourish in their work. She has taken up creative writing as a hobby after she retired from a teaching career. I’ve found that her advice has allowed my pieces to become more realistic in terms of plot, characters, and more. As she was helping me with my last story over the past month, these are the tips I learned from her, rephrased into my own words.

The first step in starting a story is to develop an overarching mood for the story. Stories, regardless if they are fictional, usually tend to relay the emotions someone is feeling in their own life. Try writing down in a journal exactly how you feel and what type of creative piece you want to begin. Perhaps a character you create could be going through a similar point in their life. But it won’t always be an easy road. What can be hard is to create characters that are not simply a reflection of your own personality. It takes time and research in order to convey them just right, so the reader can see them the way you crafted them. This holds even more importance when portraying non-fiction characters because readers want an accurate portrayal of the characters’ stories.

Once you’ve created your characters, it’s time to develop an outline. It’s important that an author creates something unique and not overused. Cliché plots can be the downfall of a story and can make it easily forgotten by readers. Common tropes can be avoided if an author doesn’t rush into writing so quickly. Sometimes, it can take months to be in the right headspace to pour a certain type of emotion into a character.

After you’ve begun an outline and plot, the last thing to remember is what the theme should be. It’s good to note that the theme is different from a genre, such as action or romance. A theme is a takeaway a reader will get from the book or a greater message that the story will leave them with. It can make someone feel a range of emotions and show perspective on the world around them. People might forget certain details about the book over time, but a theme will stick with them even when certain memories fade.

In summary, to create a story, feel free to create a journal, documenting your research on character development, plot, etc. After that, an outline can help bring each step into a greater picture, along with establishing a theme, or a message that the reader will enjoy after finishing the book. One can follow these skills in any order when writing a story, as they can prove to be helpful to creative writers along the way.