People are storytellers. Dating back to cavemen around campfires and flipping through the pages of history right up to this generation of interactive video games and Wattpad fanfics – there really has never been a time when we haven’t told stories.
We tell them in their most renowned and beloved manifestations: on cinema screens and in book trilogies and crammed into 90-second-long TikTok videos as we watch the character arc that is a ginger cat knocking a can of Coke off the coffee table.
We tell stories in numerous formats, in a multitude of languages, to an audience of 8 billion. We Tweet creatively. We craft descriptive messages to our best friends about that dream we had with that celebrity in it (spoiler alert: he was topless). We write heartfelt monologues into our journals, explaining the wildly traumatic day we’ve just survived through.
“Dear Diary, you would not believe the day I’ve had. I farted on the subway – and it was audible! I think I’m gonna have to change my identity and move to Ireland.”
Every day of our entire lives consists of us, telling our story. Yet people are often less than enthused about our educational choices when deciding on Creative Writing as a degree.
Creative writing is not a dead-end path. It’s a journey paved with yellow bricks and enchanted trees and characters strolling alongside you of your own design. It’s a degree that provides you with innumerable transferable skills that are essential should you wish to turn writing into a lifelong career.
And here are 4 of those careers that a creative writing degree will greatly enhance:
A copywriter is responsible for creating content for a company or brand that expresses its ethos. That relays its humanity in and amongst all of the business-minded interactions. A copywriter tells their story across an array of material they might use: within marketing, used in internal communications, for presentations and on their social media, etc. And what is creative writing if not the art of storytelling? Your degree will prime you perfectly in aid of finding a brand that needs its story told – and told well.
Possibly the most obvious – and most sought-after – career in creative writing. The act of creation. Writing worlds into existence. Watching others explore them. Maybe even having Netflix buy the rights. Ah, the literary dream.
- Narrative Designer
Narrative designers help a team to “shape the stories they want to tell.” Often found as part of gaming companies, they’re a vital role in creating not only the plot of a game but the narrative journey of the main character moving through it. Creative writing, here, is an invaluable resource having had plenty of experience learning about narrative structures and MC characteristics.
Not all stories have to be fictional. In fact, many of the most thrilling often aren’t. As a journalist, you’re responsible for discovering tales worth telling – worldwide – and expressing them in a way that will get readers/viewers/the human population invested in what’s going on. It’s your job to tell the stories that need to be told.
Writing creatively is not just a hobby or a pastime, it’s an expression of being a human.
It’s a way to hone our storytelling skills that can be applied to a broad reach of careers. Beyond the scope of “creative jobs” as mentioned above, creative writing skills can lend nicely to a little bit of everything.
Financial companies have a brand message that needs relaying. Engineers have Twitter accounts that need sprucing up. Fast food chains have campaigns that need to catch the attention of their audience. All businesses have adverts and all brands have origin stories and all careers contain people, human people, who’ve lived through a number of experiences that, if told – and if told well – can connect one another to each other, and establish relationships that see them through a lifetime.
Storytelling is an art and a science – and it’s an essential part of whatever journey you decide to take.
If you learn to tell good stories, you’ll live greater stories, still.