When most people hear the term ‘creative writing,’ they may think it’s a thing that only people who identify as writers can pursue or that it’s complicated. But I am here to let you know that it’s not true, because everyone’s a writer. Now that may sound a little bit corny, but it’s true. Think about when you craft a status on social media, when your teacher assigns you to free write in class, when you brainstorm ideas, or when you journal – those are all forms of writing and specifically creative writing.
For me personally, I consider myself a writer. Not a great one, but a writer nonetheless. And one of my all time favorite forms of writing is slam poetry – also known as spoken word.
Now, there are often misconceptions that poetry is complex or has to rhyme or has to be super aggressive – especially slam poetry. So here are some tips to help you tap into your inner writer and inner slam poet.
Where to Start
Are you wondering how to start creative writing? Well, you’ve probably already started. Just think of the last thing that you wrote and boom you will realize you’ve already done it.
Let’s talk about the mechanics of creative writing as a beginner. To begin, it’s always easier to start writing in a space were you feel comfortable. Then, you will want to clear your mind. I suggest some deep breathing. It may seem a little bit extra, but I want to stress that having a clear mind when writing is very important; however, you do not have to use deep breathing as your relaxation method – you can use whatever makes you feel calm.
Once you are comfortable and in a good head space, you should start writing. Get out a piece of paper or a notebook and something to write with and just write! It doesn’t matter what, just write something and worry about putting it together later.
What is Slam Poetry?
Slam poetry, or its more formal name spoken word poetry, is where you free write about something that you care about, and typically you’ll say it in front of people at a poetry slam. It’s very informal. You write how you feel about something, memorize it and perhaps perform it. Oftentimes, spoken word can be very rap based and may seem intense at first because people are speaking about topics that they care about with almost no guidelines which is why it can be so much fun.
Writing Spoken Word
There is no guide to writing spoken word. Just sit down and write your feelings down. Then you’ll have the basis of a spoken word poem right there. Remember not to force it and don’t compare your work to anyone else’s work because everyone’s poetry is their own.
If you take away anything from this, remember that writing isn’t a closed off thing for authors or poets. Everyone truly is a writer, and spoken word is a great place to start because you can truly write about and do whatever you want with it.
If you consider yourself a writer already and are lacking inspiration, the library has many booksthat you can check out. Below, I’ve listed some materials to help you get started in your creative writing journey, as well as some of my personal favorite spoken word poems.
Remember, everyone’s a writer!
Library Books on Creative Writing
Just Imagine: Music, Images and Text to Inspire Creative Writing by James Carter
The Future of Creative Writing by Graeme Harper
Let the Crazy Child Write: Finding Your Creative Voice by Clive Matson
Helpful YouTube Links for Creative Writing
Tyla’s Slam Poetry Favorites