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Invention for Secondary School Students: Creative Writing


This page provides resources for grades 7-12 instructors and students

Contributors:Lauren Huebsch, Allen Brizee
Last Edited: 2014-10-12 01:20:46

Creative writing lets you break away from traditional or “normal” papers. You get to use your own imagination to write a story, a poem, a reflection, and more.  However, creative writing requires different details that you might not find in another genre like research writing. A few strategies for starting your creative writing can be found in the next section.

Invention Strategies for Creative Writing

Warm Up First

Learn to trust your own voice and ideas (Goldberg 13). Your writing will be different from your friend’s work and your favorite author’s work, and that is just fine! You have something to say and an individual way to say it. Use your words and style to express your ideas. Sometimes creative writing can be scary because you just don’t know what to say. Trust yourself, and know that no one expects you to be a professional or perfect writer immediately. The more you write, the better you will become.

Look at Examples for Inspiration 

Who is your favorite writer? Why? What does this writer do that makes him or her cool, fun, or interesting to you? You might look at these things:

Consider looking at a variety of writers as well. Pick up pieces of writing that you haven’t looked at before. If you have a favorite writer or book, ask your teacher about other writers or books that might be similar. This can give you more ideas to spark your own creative writing. However, make sure that your ideas are your own or give credit to the to the other person’s ideas see the Avoiding Plagiarism handout on the Purdue OWL. 

Creative Writing Invention Questions

When you begin to invent a piece of creative writing  (like a story or a poem), asking yourself questions can be a great way to allow ideas flowing.

General Questions for Creative Writing

Questions For Inventing a Fictional Character

The following questions can help you create your own unique characters:

For more information on writing fiction, see the Fiction Writing Basics handout on the Purdue OWL.

Questions For Inventing a Poem or Prose Narrative About a Personal Experience 

If you are writing about a personal experience, use these questions to remember the interesting details of that experience:

For additional information on general invention strategies, click here.

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