What is Creative Writing?

1 08 2014

The past two weeks have been extremely busy around here, as I worked more 10 hour days than not; creating fresh copy for a variety of clients, while also working hard to develop a new product to sell to a fairly narrow niche client base. My point in explaining this is two-fold: to explain why I’ve posted next to nothing here, and to share an idea I had recently about “creative writing.”

First, I’ve posted next to nothing here because I’ve been very busy. (There, I said I’d explain that, right? DONE.)

Next, it occurred to me recently (as it has many times before) that the phrases “Creative Writing” and “Creative Writer” are applied by most, and almost exclusively, to fiction and writers of fiction. On one hand I can understand this, I suppose. Fiction writers and/or novelists are definitely creative, even going so far as to create whole worlds from nothing but their imaginations; peopled with characters we will never meet in the real world.

The “Harry Potter” series jumps most quickly to mind, though “The Sword of Truth” series and “A Song of Ice and Fire: Game of Thrones” are not far behind. These series’ of books were, and are, stunningly creative and exceedingly entertaining. I could name many others, but these will do for now. I find myself envious of the authors, JK Rowling, Terry Goodkind, and George RR Martin for the creativity and inventiveness they display, as well as the sheer talent for expressing themselves through the written word. Not to mention the perseverance required to create such massive works. BRAVO!

And yet, I find myself compelled to argue that what I now do for a living is also creative writing and, though the writing I do is most certainly not fiction, to defend it as such. Need proof? How about this for an example?

Non-fiction writing is creative writing too

Imagine yourself sitting down every week to write two pieces of about 500 words each on a single subject, say coping with stress, for a particular client – the same client and the same subject every week – for FOUR YEARS. That equates to 104 blog posts and articles per year, and 416 of them over four years. That is also some 52,000 words per year, and more than 200,000 words in four years – all devoted to a single subject – coping with stress – for a single client. This implies a regular audience who have seen most of what you’ve written over those four years, so your writing had better not be repetitive. You must find a new approach to the subject every week, every month, and every year.

Would this require creativity? If you did that, would you call yourself a Creative Writer?

Well, that is what I do nearly every day. I try to creatively describe what it is that my clients do, or value, or wish to promote, in clearly defined, well-written terms that allow their readers to appreciate more fully the things the client has to offer. I educate and illustrate; I explain and proclaim; I praise and promote – all in my clients’ name – and in my clients’ voice. Is this “Creative Writing”?

My clients include medical doctors; psychologists and psychiatrists; therapists and counselors; health coaches, nutrition coaches, fitness coaches and business coaches; attorneys and realtors; website designers, screen printers, and IT support companies. I write about coping with stress, anxiety, depression, suicide, the loss of a child, the loss of a parent, and divorce. I write about feet: healthy and unhealthy feet, and about how to maintain healthy feet or how to repair damaged feet. I write about weight loss and dieting; about dieting fads and scams; about healthy nutrition and juicing for health, as well as exercise and healthy living. Can anyone deny that what I do qualifies me as a “Creative Writer”?

Hey, I even write about writing: website copywriting, sales copywriting, writing for SEO, article writing and blog writing, eBook writing and eBook ghostwriting. Do these fulfill the definition of “being creative”?

It may be simply a matter of semantics to most but, to a writer who must use all of his creative power to continue making a single subject interesting, informative, and original on a regular basis and over time, it is far more than a semantic argument. In fact, it’s the very essence of what that writer does, how he views himself, and how he values his work. I may not be a Creative Writer (with caps), but what I do is most definitely creative writing (lower case).

Working hard, or hardly working?

8 11 2011

Been working my tail off for the last month to get the new website up and running: creating content, adding products, refining the look, and making it appealing to the search engines, as well as the readers. Oh, and doing a few jobs for clients.

I sure would appreciate it if a few of you would take a look over there and tell me what you think…just click on the logo above to be transported!



2 03 2011

I realize I’ve been remiss in taking care of the blog lately, and for that, I apologize. You see I’ve been a bit busy this past week writing. Writing for others.

It’s amazing what the Internet has done for communication in the world. As it turns out, there are dozens, if not hundreds of websites which provide content, written, video or imagery, for others who manage blogs and websites. Many of these people find it difficult to generate content for their own sites. Whether they manage a personal or business blog or a business or product website, for whatever reason, these folks need help with content. This is where I and many others like me come to the rescue.

The world of freelance content producers has grown exponentially in the last decade. There are, literally, millions of us out there. We take the ideas and needs of others and create content for them. In the last week alone, I have produced 17 articles for clients from Utah to Great Britain, with orders for a dozen more waiting to be filled. It seems I’ve become pretty popular all of a sudden…heh heh.

All of these articles have been cycling related. No surprise there, right? However, this was coincidental, and providential, because it got me started writing for pay. Some of these sites only take orders for articles; while some post projects and take bids; while still others take orders and will also post original content for sale from their authors. I have three more articles under review at one of these sites, with one article posted for sale. It is a very interesting and challenging way to try to make a living.

The range of subjects is mind-blowing, as is the rate of pay offered. I’ve seen requests for everything from articles to promote porn sites to requests to rewrite existing books in order to avoid copyright infringement; requests for content about driveways to explanations of high-tech computer components. I’ve seen offers from folks who will pay $30 for 500 words, and offers of $1 for the same. (It’s amazing how little value some people place on getting help for something they are incapable of doing.) In other words, if there is something out there on the web, someone needs content to help them explain it or sell it. It’s a diverse world with a broad range of interesting, and not so interesting, subjects which people wish to share.

Beyond the writing, I’ve also been helping my roommate, Andi, with her Virtual Assistant business. She is a social networking and marketing coach and consultant and we’ve been putting together and implementing a plan to promote a book, blog, and website for a local doctor. It’s been fun and educational, and it actually pays much better than the freelance writing. I’m going to keep the writing going though since Andi can’t guarantee constant work.

So, I now have four part-time jobs, all performed from home. I still rebuild and sell bikes, plus the freelance writing for the online sites, in addition to working for Andi. It’s been interesting, to say the least, as well as satisfying, since I enjoy writing almost as much as riding. I’m also hoping to get some good news from the local bike shop this week. They’re hiring a bunch of people for the upcoming season and I hope to be one of them. That would give me five jobs. Who would have guessed?


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