There are multiple methods one can use to increase their creativity.
What works for one person may not work for others. What works for others may not work for you. Here are twenty tips which are easy and you can trick your brain to view things differently. The more you practice these, the better you’ll become in the long run.
Let’s get started.

Focus on your favourite colour

It can be anyone of them. Jot down a few emotions that come to your mind when you think about this colour. You can write a poem on it, or a short paragraph. This technique can be used for different colours.

Go for a walk

This is a technique many writers talk about. Almost every writer has said that fresh air, some exercise and change of scenery has helped them write more and better. Walking is the simplest exercise, and it is known to enhance creativity. You may write about something unusual you saw on a walk, or the different odours in the air, or just the whole experience. You can do the same by sitting on a rooftop and seeing different things.

Be around nature

Some of the greatest works in literature are based on nature. One of my favourite poems by Robert Frost is “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”. The whole poem has to do with snow, woods and an indescribable feeling he put in words. Another one of my favourite poems is by Sylvia Plath. It is called “The Moon and the Yew Tree”. Nature is present in almost every novel too. There’s a good reason for it. Nature fosters creativity.

Read good literature

Pick up your favourite book. Reread some of the passages from it. Pick out your favourite lines, characters and how they make you feel. You can use all of these ideas to produce your own creative work. These help you define who you want to be as a writer/creative. On the other hand, you can also pick up a different genre. If you read romantic works a lot, pick up a crime thriller or fantasy. This will enable you to grow your creative palate.

Watch a show

It’s interesting how what we watch manifests itself into our minds. You can watch multiple shows, look into their storylines and visualise your own creative work along those lines. Don’t binge watch shows, but take it one episode at a time. Or you can simply watch a movie during your break from writing.

Don’t give up on your chores and other work

It is strange how much doing other things helps us in our creative process. If you feel you have hit a writer’s block, cleaning up helps. When you go through your old drawers, you will see a whole array of items you had probably forgotten about. You can use these objects in a story or a poem.
These are your props. Use them wisely. You can also use your work to help you write. Charles Bukowski did just that.

Write about yourself

Write about yourself in the third person. Write about what you love about yourself. Or simply who you want to be in 5 years or 1 year or 2 years. This will give you a mind map and you’ll have written a few words at the same time. You are the most important person in your life, so it is also easy to write about oneself and what one wants to be. I believe that when a person tells a story, there’s a lot of themselves, their experiences etc in it.

Write about your favourite people

See your family members not as your mother, father or sister or brother. Rather, see them as people, with struggles, motivation, thoughts and ideas. Everyone has the potential to be a protagonist, supporting character or an antagonist. Notice the way they talk, how they walk and dress. This is good readily available material for you to use.

Spend time with children

This can be any child. Only half an hour will do. Kids truly say the most interesting things. And they act naturally. Nothing about them is made up. Spending time with them will help you see the world differently too. They have a very different viewpoint about life than adults. You’ll be able to collect a lot of original materials from them.

Ask your friends what they like to read

If you are really lost and have nowhere to begin, simply turn to your friends. Ask them what they’d like to read or wish was already written. They will give you some absurd ideas, but you’ll be able to make something else out of it. This will help you define who your readers are going to be as well. Friends can be honest and give you a different perspective.

Travel

If you have the time and resources, and the pandemic is not a threat to you,(COVID-19 is serious and you do not want to put others’ lives at risk), pack your bags and go to a new place for a few days. This will enhance your experience, you get to know new people and different cultures and also it enable you to try new things. This is something valuable and you can write about all these things. Buy a travel-journal, or a notebook to record all your experiences.

Write or draw food

Food is one of the greatest things on this planet. Other than replenishing and nourishing us, food brings us together. All festivals in the world are incomplete without food. Every cuisine has its own colours, flavours and aromas. Go at length to write about your favourite food. There’s no end to it once you start. Think of textures, temperature and the ingredients. It is very easy to romanticise food as well. If you’re an artist, feel free to draw your favourite food in the most absurd places, like having rice on another planet.

Research your way into writing

Make searches on something you want to know more about. This will enrich your mind. A few days ago I was researching on Branding of Foods all over the world for an artist, and it taught me a lot about the materials, processes and concepts behind ‘marketing food’. What makes you buy a certain brand of coffee, tea or face wash. There is so much behind all this and you will surely learn new things and it helps one become an informed writer. These things help in the creation of literary works or pieces of art if you delve deep into a product.

Rejoinder

I am sure many of you have read multiple stories, epics, myths while growing up. Many people in literature have been able to pick up the most unimportant characters in literature and rewritten them as main characters. Ayn Rand, J M Coetzee and others have done this to write best-selling books. You can do the same thing. Thing of a character you think was underrepresented or misrepresented in a book and rewrite your version of it.

Join a writing club

Working with other writers is something many people believe is a necessary thing. While writing itself is a lonely job, you can certainly bring together different people and learn more from them. Simultaneously, you can join writing pages on Facebook and Instagram as they post daily writing prompts that can help you come out of dead ends in your own work.

Write or draw an object.

Think about an invention you think is important, or a dress you’d like to own, or something you already have that has sentimental value. Object based stories can be so beautiful. A lot of writers make use of objects to reflect on a character’s thoughts or to tell a story. You can do the same.

Dress Up for an Imaginary Event

Even if you have nowhere to go. Dress up and think about where you’d like to be. You can dress fancy or wear your track suit or wear a swimsuit. You’ll be in a different feel altogether. Think about where you would go dressed like that, go trekking, swimming, having dinner with a significant other. Then write about the whole event as if you are already there. Write about whole conversations that take place in this event. You’ll have more material to write about.

Learn from Historical Speeches

One of the things I do when I can’t write is listen to old speeches. Most of them are in the 1970s UN, or Presidents of different countries or historical figures. This way, you can think about a character who is either sitting their listening or what you’d like to pick up from it. It can be a phrase, an ideology or something interesting about the way they talk. You can create a whole other character from these speeches. This is very inspirational and your character may inspire you to write more.

Read Newspapers

Not just the headlines or the front page. Go deep into the newspaper and pick up a civilian story. Have you heard of Beloved by Toni Morrison. The whole book is about slavery in America and the context is one newspaper clipping Morrison read and turned into a novel. The same goes for A Mercy by Toni Morrison. You can create a whole background story which led to the news you read in a newspaper. This will help you be more believable as a writer too.

Listen to a Song

Listen to a song you haven’t listened to in a long time but loved at a point in time. Use a sentence from that song to write a short story. You can also watch the video of the song (if it has any) and write about a similar scenario. Music is known to boost creativity and productivity. If you don’t feel like working listening to Jazz and other playlists on productivity and creativity on YouTube can give you the right feels to be more creative. This can be used at home or at your job too when you feel like you can’t work anymore

Which of these have you tried and which of them have worked well in keeping you well on top of your creative game?

Let us know in the comments.
Also, if there are any points/methods missed out, do include them below as well.


This is an article contributed to the blog by Fatima Hasan

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