How Using Your Imagination Helps You To Write Great Books

By on September 11, 2016
How Using Your Imagination Helps You To Write Great Books

If you are writing a fiction book, you are no doubt using your imagination. You are essentially making it up after all! However, some writers, despite being good at their craft, find it challenging to let their imaginations run wild.

Using your imagination and allowing yourself the freedom to think up surprising and unique ideas for your book can be harder than you think.

We live in a world where we are taught to question things, to investigate them, and we rely on our senses to tell us whether something is real or not. However, one of the great joys of reading is being able to immerse oneself in another world. A world where anything is possible, where the usual rules don’t apply.

As readers, we are so willing to believe in the stories we read, and, providing the writing in convincing, we can suspend our disbelief and be carried along on a magical journey, to places that are just as real to us as anywhere else.

In fact, readers and writers have an unspoken deal. If writers can use their imaginations and write a believable story, readers will set aside what the have been told to be true and allow themselves to believe in the impossible.

So how do you exercise your creativity and learn how to set your imagination free?

Ask questions

To write a story you need a character, so imagine a person. Who are they? Where are they? Why are they here? What do the want? As soon as you start asking questions, your imagination starts to work. Then you need to imagine the world. Where is it in the universe? What kind of landscapes does it have? What colours can you see? What kind of animals live there?

Try not to censor yourself, think big and see where it takes you. Once you have established the standard things, try to think of more unorthodox questions to ask, this way your answers too will become more intriguing and imaginative.

Go somewhere new

Stimulate your imagination by going somewhere you have never been before. Sometimes it can be difficult to get creative when you are stuck in the same old routine. If you have an adventure and try new things, your imagination will be boosted. Go somewhere new and explore it. Every time you see a building or a person make up a story about them in your mind, soon you will start to see your imagination running wild.

Read children’s stories

Reading children’s stories is an excellent way to inspire your imagination and to learn how to think more creatively.

The worlds that are created in children’s stories are almost always ones in which some sort of magic happens.The characters are other-worldly, mysterious creatures and the adventures they have are impossible, dangerous, exhilarating rollercoaster rides. Reading stories where you are asked to let go of the world you live in, and (temporarily) believe in another where anything is possible, will help you become more imaginative in your own work.

Listen to music

Music is very evocative, and it can encourage memories, desires, emotions and thoughts and allow them to come to the forefront of our minds. Make a playlist of lots of different genres and types of music and see which songs or pieces work best for you.

Setting your imagination free can bring great rewards for writers, your ideas will feel more original, your stories more exciting and adventurous and the writing process will feel more satisfying in general. So next time you sit down to write, ask yourself whether you are fully using your imagination, and if not, why not try the ideas above to see where they take you?

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

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