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Skill Development

These pages describe various aspects of skill development in creative writing (and creativity in general). Each page has both a video and accompanying text. A playlist of all the videos (videos only; no text) is also provided below.

Habits of Creativity

Consistency & Commitment

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:33 p.m. • Ross Laird

There are many ways to cultivate your creativity and your writing, but there is a shortlist of things that professionals find helpful (see the list below). At the same ti...

Subjects & Themes

Choosing what to Write About

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:33 p.m. • Ross Laird

What should you write about? That’s a tough question for me to answer because I don’t know! The only person who can answer that question is you. What do you want to write...

On Editing

An Illustration in One Sentence

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:34 p.m. • Ross Laird

Editing is the task that nobody wants to do. No matter how skilled you are as a writer, editing is the hard part. You’ll often hear professional writers say that they spe...

Starting to Write

An Illustration in One Sentence

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:34 p.m. • Ross Laird

The video describes a few simple steps to start writing. It’s an informal approach to the topic. If you want something more serious and perhaps more challenging, read the...

Ongoing Creative Practice

Skill Development as a Personal Pathway

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:32 p.m. • Ross Laird

Creative writing skill is not the kind of thing that you master completely. It’s the same as other creative disciplines. You don’t become the perfect violin player by pra...

Deepening Creative Skill

Practice and Craft Development

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:35 p.m. • Ross Laird

The video above explores the deep connections between personal development and creativity — in particular, creative writing. After you review the video, you may find the ...

Tools for Writing

Use what works (for you)

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:34 p.m. • Ross Laird

The tools writers use are as diverse as writers themselves. What works best for you is not necessarily the same as what works for other people (see the list below). So, i...

On Improvement

Small and consistent steps

Jan. 6, 2024, 4:35 p.m. • Ross Laird

The oldest and most archetypal poems, epics, and songs – the original roots and branches of all literature – are articulated visions. They are dreams, glimpses of other w...

Writing for an Audience

Jan. 9, 2024, 7:25 p.m. • Ross Laird

How do writers develop the skills needed to write for an audience? How can we best analyze audience perspectives, motivations, values, and concerns? And, in turn, how do we successfully address the...