Written by Sonia Charles, Guest Writer
As a writer or someone who wants to write more, it can be hard to find what you’re looking for when you first come to AC. Even if you’ve been with AC for a while, it can be difficult to find the resources you might need to start your journey as a writer. With my experiences as a writer in college, I thought I’d share some simple tips and tricks that might also help you develop your creative expression. I’m going to focus on the creative writing for this list, and these are more suggestions I have rather than a “how to guide”. Everyone moves and grooves at their own pace, and it’s all about finding what works best for you.
Get involved in the literary scene on campus!
AC has fun outlets to express their creativity. Participate in events like open mic nights, writing group sessions, workshops, etc. can help you learn more about what other students are doing while making your voice heard. It’s another great way to meet other creative minds, but it gives you something to look forward to when it comes to your creative work, especially if you want to test out your latest piece in front of other people.
Don’t forget to read!
Reading is good for everyone, especially writers. If you’re working on a specific project, like a horror story for example, it might be helpful to read other horror stories for inspiration. The reading can often serve as a reminder of how you might envision your own writing projects or even inspire another look. It can help as research or even a break from what you’re working on.
That said, I strongly recommend that you refrain from comparing yourself to the writers you read, or any writer in general. You are the author of your stories with your own voice and your own style. Everyone is different and their talents also shine in different ways.
Ask for help!
It can be helpful for other people to see your work and give feedback, so you know what you can add to or change from what you already have to make it better. If you want more one-on-one help, try making an appointment with a tutor at the Scarbrough Center for Writing. All tutors can help with any writing task, including creative writing projects. You can also find comments from a writing group or even from your fellow writers! Getting feedback can feel a little scary at first, especially when you start writing, but it can really help you grow as a writer and develop more ideas for improvement over time.
Get your job there!
Once you’ve completed a piece of creative writing, consider submitting it to a literary publication. Austin College has its own literary magazine called Suspension, and they publish poetry, short stories, and art in a print edition every year! There are many places to post your work like antonym, The Firefly Review, Brown Sugar Lit, and many others. You can share your work with the community and see your name printed. How exciting!
Take care and have fun!
Even though creative writing is mostly done for the fun of creating stories and expressing yourself, it’s common to feel a lot of pressure. It is therefore important to take care of yourself. Writing blockage can be frustrating, but it can be helpful to take some time off from your writing to focus on other things like your academics, friends, other hobbies, and most importantly, yourself. -same. Make sure to take breaks, take walks, drink water, and stay healthy no matter what you’re chasing. Also, make sure you enjoy it. Go at your own pace and find your voice through it all.
Thanks for making it to the end of the list! Hope this helps you venture into your creative expressions!