Many people who love creative writing assume that journalism would be the perfect career for them.
But while you do need to be a good writer to be a good journalist, there’s a big difference between creative writing and journalism.
Creative writing is all about using your imagination to come up with a great story or scenario, often by using unusual language and techniques to make the reader see something in a new light. Put simply, creative writing is about making things up.
Journalism is different from creative writing as it’s factual. You have to present information in an interesting, readable way that will grab the reader’s attention. However, at the same time you’ll usually have to stick to a word limit, a structure and a style. You can’t be totally creative in the way you can with a poem or a short story. And, unlike creative writing, you certainly can’t invent anything.
Explore cities as a creative writer. Let our travel writing course show you how.
Creative writing and its place in journalism
Having said that, there are some areas of journalism which have more in common with creative writing than others, in the sense that you have more freedom to express yourself as you wish. News reporting is totally different to creative writing– in theory, any journalist reporting a major news event should come up with a pretty similar story.
Feature writing is not creative writing because it’s still based on facts, but there is still the opportunity to use a freer style. Within the scope of the publication you are working for, you can put your stamp on an article with some clever, vivid writing.
Travel writing is probably the type of journalism that is closest to creative writing. It’s still based on facts but the brief is often looser.
Travel journalism allows you to work with your creative writing skills because as individuals, we will always see and experience things differently, giving you much more freedom to write as you wish.
As long as you get the essential feel of a destination, you can use very descriptive and colourful writing. Rather like creative writing, you can often focus on what you want to – an interesting meeting with a local, an unexpected encounter with wildlife, or whatever else will bring your travel feature to life.
Online creative writing courses
If you think you are ready to make the leap from creative writing to travel journalism, it’s a good idea to do a course that will equip you with all the skills you need. If you are looking for online creative writing courses, then the Morris Journalism Academy’s online course will help you achieve creative writing skills – Click here
Request the Ultimate Travel Journalism Course Guide & Pricing Information