A different stance on writing

Sara Wentland, Staff Writer

Never-ending fluorescent lights flooded the room. Monotonous assignments dreadfully filled the blank page. An eager mind wandered, swaying towards the door. Writing shouldn’t be an uninteresting dreadful task. Writing is a way to put your thoughts into words – to create a piece that encapsulates your story. 

The bounds of writing are not limited to a traditional essay assignment; instead, writing has endless possibilities through a variety of genres. Oftentimes, writing is restricted to a structurally formatted piece that solely serves the purpose of “filling the page”; however, writing can be so much more. Having the ability to use your creativity to write a piece that is desirable to you can make for a different stance on writing altogether. 

Creative writing goes outside the bounds of academic, professional, or any type of restrictive writing and allows for writers to focus on character development skills, narrative craft, and a variety of writing styles – all of which benefit the crucial skills needed for any intended writing endeavor. 

Pascack Valley’s creative writing class provides students with the chance to expand their horizons through poems, short stories, novels, and more, which then can be integrated into one’s unique writing style. 

Writing is a crucial skill no matter what you plan to study or what occupation you plan to pursue in the future. Creative writing helps to better not only your writing skills, such as grammar and structuring but also your ability to come up with an idea for a piece and make it high quality. Having the ability to formulate ideas and construct a well thought out piece of writing is a very valuable skill to have. 

Creative writing has a plethora of advantages that standard English class essays do not provide. These can be achieved through poems, short stories, and more. (Sara Wentland)

In the creative writing class, students can try different pieces of writing, contrary to exclusively standard writing pieces – most notably essays – in other classes. Some examples include novels, short stories, plays, children’s books, and poems. This exposure to a variety of writing styles allows for students to delve into a style of writing that they might have otherwise avoided.

Typically in the creative writing class, there is a lot of individual writing time as well as personalized conferencing time with the teacher and other students. Being able to engage with your teacher throughout the writing process is very beneficial as you learn to incorporate new skills and implement different writing techniques that otherwise could have been overlooked. 

The teacher of the class, Kate Overgaard, provides her insight into the importance of creative writing.

“I think [taking the class] would initially be a challenge, but you will find that this is a different type of writing [class] that is intentionally designed to [provide] a lot of freedom,” Overgaard said. “This is a great class for students who enjoy imagining and creatively writing. Students can explore a different type of writing than they would in other classes. I think that sometimes we stick to certain genres that we feel comfortable with, but in life, you will have to write different types of pieces and it is important to try different things.”

The class involves several unique writing pieces – such as NaNoWriMo, which involves students writing every day for the month of November in hopes of completing a novel – as well as examining different types of writing such as poems, short stories, and other novels to obtain new knowledge and integrate certain writing types into one’s own style. 

Initially, the idea of writing a novel or expanding your writing over to different writing genres may seem overwhelming, but it truly is what you make it. You have full creative control over how you write your piece, and having that finished piece of writing that you are proud of is most definitely rewarding. 

Junior Eva Gutierrez, a former student in the class, believes her writing changed for the better after taking the class as a sophomore.

“When it comes to academic writing, especially in high school, we never really have the freedom to write a good story with no limits or focuses,” Gutierrez said. “As someone who [has been] very interested in writing throughout my whole life, taking [the] creative writing [class] was extremely beneficial and eye-opening to the endless styles and future paths that incorporate writing.” 

No matter what career you pursue or interests you have, creative writing is a necessary skill to have for any desired endeavor. There are endless possibilities when you have full creative freedom to construct a piece of writing that speaks to you.