Ideas for Creative Writing Projects and Practices

creative writing projects

Need ideas for your creative writing projects?

Do you ever feel like you’re in a writing slump?

You can’t find a project worth committing to, or you have so many ideas, you can’t choose just one. You fill your notebooks and journals, but you can’t find a sense of purpose in what you’re doing. Maybe you spend a lot of time thinking about writing but can’t find the time to actually write.

Sometimes, the best plan is to make a plan. Instead of writing in circles or fretting about your projects (or lack thereof), stop and think about what you want to achieve or explore with your writing. Make a list of ideas for creative writing projects that you can sink your teeth into and then choose one and see it through to the end. You’ll come out of it with a sense of accomplishment and purpose.

Ideas for Creative Writing

Whether you’re stuck in a slump or caught up in a cacophony of projects that are vying for your attention, reviewing your options is the single best way to get refocused. You might decide that you need a big, long-term project that will keep you busy for months, or you might choose something short and simple that you can finish quickly. You might realize that you don’t need a project at all — what you need are better writing habits and practices so you can stick with your craft.


Below is a list of ideas for creative writing projects and practices. This list is meant to inspire you to think about your personal goals as a writer so you can make solid decisions about what to focus on in the near future.

  1. Make a chapbook, a little thematic collection of essays, stories, or poems (or all of these). Print copies and bring them to readings or your local, indie bookstore, or make an ebook and sell or give it away online.
  2. Start a blog. Give yourself a public space in which to write, put your voice out there, and stick to a regular writing schedule.
  3. Set aside twenty minutes every day for writing. Write whatever you want during those twenty minutes, just make sure you do it every day.
  4. Write for change. Find something you’re passionate about and affect change through writing (a blog is great for this).
  5. Participate in NaNoWriMo. It happens every November, and you can spend the months before NaNo plotting, outlining, and sketching characters.
  6. Read for an hour every night before bed. Reading will inspire you and it will make you a better writer.
  7. Keep a journal. Spend ten or fifteen minutes a day jotting down your thoughts and ideas, or use your journal as a space to practice clear, compelling writing.
  8. Tackle writing exercises that inspire and challenge you.
  9. Go to an open mic. Attend as a listener or bring your work and share it with the audience.
  10. Read everything you’ve ever written. Go through all your files and notebooks. You’ll see that your writing has improved over time, and you may find some old projects that are worth dusting off and revisiting.
  11. Submit something. If you’ve accumulated a lot of writing over the years, there’s a good chance you have a few publishable pieces. Why keep them hidden away?
  12. Write about writing. Why do you write? What do you love about writing? What are your goals? The very act of writing a personal statement will shed light on an otherwise murky path.
  13. Join a writing group or find a writing partner. Groups and partners have a lot to offer: they help you stay focused, they can offer feedback and criticism to help you improve your work, and they can be your support system.
  14. Join a book club. If you don’t read much, your writing will suffer. If you haven’t read enough, a book club will introduce you to worthwhile literature and provide a space in which you can explore writing from the reader’s perspective.
  15. Take a creative writing class or workshop. You’ll get to do exercises, assignments, and engage with other writers. Surround yourself with peers and mentors and get feedback on your work.
  16. Re-imagine your favorite story. Take an old legend or fairy tale and give it a modern twist. Start with an outline, and if your concept works, develop it into a short story, novel, or screenplay.
  17. Get personal. Write a polished personal essay about an experience you’ve had that you think it worth sharing. If the project intrigues you, let it expand into a memoir, or fictionalize it and turn it into a novel.
  18. Try something new. If you always write fiction, try to write a song lyric. If you’re stuck on poetry, try writing a personal essay. Change genres: if you’re a romance writer, give science fiction a spin.

What are some of your favorite ideas for creative writing projects and practices? If you have any ideas to add to this list, please share them in the comments. And keep writing!

Adventures in Writing The Complete Collection

About Melissa Donovan
Melissa Donovan is a website designer and copywriter. She writes fiction and poetry and is the founder and editor of Writing Forward, a blog packed with creative writing tips and ideas.

Comments

6 Responses to “Ideas for Creative Writing Projects and Practices”

  1. geraldine says:

    Those are great ideas to get you out of the writing slump. And speaking of NaNoWrimo, it’s happening this November. It’s middle of November but I guess it’s not yet too late to join. :) I recently joined SheWrites and started my own group – a fan club for Emily Dickinson poetry because I like her poems; thinking this should keep me motivated – to write, to get connected with other writers, and of course a bit of drawing. One of the best way to keep you inspired to write and develop your own writing style is to read books; especially those of your fave author or genre. In this way, you will get ideas on how to narrate a story.

    I’d like to share a technique in writing. The author called it a modified snowflake method: http://productcreationblog.com/419/how-to-plan-and-write-your-ebook-with-the-modified-snowflake-method/ And this is suited for those who are writing non-fiction information ebook. Hope this is helpful in terms of developing an outline of an ebook.

  2. Thank you for sharing these wonderful tips! I have been in a slump lately, not being able to complete a writing project. These were very helpful!

  3. Sarah Allen says:

    Great ideas! Thanks for sharing, and thanks for the inspiration. I like the idea of changing things up. I want to try that.

  4. Maluly says:

    Definitely the best way to get inspired into writing something is reading. When I finish reading something I find myself being restless, always doodling on any page I get my hands on.
    Something that helps me is to start writing on the margins of old schoolbooks. All the writing besides inspires me. Also on top of pictures. Print out a landscape and write on the clouds or the horizon.
    What we’ve learned to do in English class is visualize an audience that we write something for. Your closest friends an people you share everything with are part of your permanent audience but you can add people or take them away as you take on different topics and styles.

    • It sounds like you have an awesome English teacher. You can also keep track of the books (as well as movies, TV shows, art, music, etc.) that inspire you, so when you’re feeling uninspired, you have an arsenal of material that you can use to reinvigorate your muse. When writer’s block strikes, just read your favorite stories and poems, watch the movies that light your ideas on fire, and listen to music that makes you want to write. Good luck, Maluly, and keep writing :)

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