My drug of choice is writing––writing, art, reading, inspiration, books, creativity, process, craft, blogging, grammar, linguistics, and did I mention writing?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Random Creative Writing Terms Beginning With the Letter H

Creative Writing Terms Starting With G

Haiku- A poem with three lines.  Five syllables--then seven more.  Line three has five more.

Historical Fiction- Fiction that takes place in the past--usually within an identifiable era (like World War 2 or The Depression).  This is different than fiction that takes place in past tense as it generally involves recognizable historic events.

A writer must be extremely careful about historical fiction because the relationship between historical settings and "genre" are definite, but ill defined.  And as you know, genre is not "real" literature, so by picking the wrong time period, as writer may categorically deny themselves the possibility of writing real literature.  Certain time periods are absolutely genre--like anything west of the Mississippi in the 19th century, but others are acceptable like Victorian England.  Similarly, using historical figures may get a work labeled genre, but it depends greatly on how important the figure is, and what interaction they have with the main character.  There is a huge grey area between claiming that Willard Fillmore nodded in your direction at a polo tournament once and that Abraham Lincoln hunted vampires with his axeguncane before he was elected president.

Use history in your writing at your own risk.  You walk a fine line between real writing and that fake genre stuff.

Humor- Apparently the most difficult concept in all of humanity to master.  Often confused with "being offensive and calling it edgy."  Surprise, the inevitable, truth, falsehood, exaggeration, understatement make for humor...even though they are opposites of each other.  Slapstick, parody, satire, irony, sarcasm, farce, puns, wordplay, misunderstandings, double entendres, and more make for humor.   Even stereotypes make for humor as all my Moleskine journal jokes attest to.  And there's even just how using profanity in weirdly inappropriate contexts can be hilarious.

Pictured: Humor.
We don't know why.  We don't know how.
But it's funny.

Humor in writing can be even more difficult to pull off as many context clues that would key someone into a jovial intention in face-to-face interactions are absent.

Hyperbole- Grotesquely exaggerated statements whose language is intended to make a point.  Like saying someone is as big as a house or that you could eat an entire cow.  Anything ever said on the internet about politics is hyperbole, and 90% of all things said on the internet about ANYTHING are hyperbole. in fact, if you can't write as if using two spaces after a period is a crime against humanity, you really need to stop being on the internet right away.

Use hyperbole after the word "literally" if you really want to see some English teachers pop their corks.

Creative Writing Terms Starting With I



  1. Love these so much. Can't wait for the next one.

    1. Thanks. I'm hoping to do one a week (at LEAST two a month) until I'm done.