For many students, summer holidays means a huge increase in spare time.
There are no papers to write and no more exams to stay up all night cramming for, but you’re not off the hook yet! You still have to plan for that summer job hunt.
Taking the next step is always scary, so a good way to relax after the school grind is to pick up a hobby, whether it’s something recreational, like joining a sports team, or something creative, like painting or writing. What most people don’t realize is just how these hobbies can continue to help you when you’re looking for jobs and even later in your career. Creative writing is one of these hobbies, and most people don’t realize how it can directly help your job hunt. It exercises thought, creativity, and, of course, writing skills; important abilities which can help you get that job application just right.
Creative writing can help you gain more insight
A lot of inspiration for creative writing comes from the world around you. Little details that you notice every day are the bread and butter of writing fiction, and many writers keep a pen and notepad handy on them at all times to take down these little details.
By turning these details into stories, you’ll begin to gain insight into what interests you about the world around you – whose stories, what events, and which parts of life you want to explore more. This self-knowledge will give you a more nuanced idea of what you do and don’t want from your career, and that can make all the difference when looking and applying for jobs! In addition to this, when job hunting, the self-knowledge that comes from writing can give you a better idea of what you’re capable of. For example, when you’re writing a cover letter for a potential employer, you will have the added confidence of knowing how to tell your story clearly and effectively.
Creative writing can help you hone your writing skills
All fiction starts in the imagination. Writing is just as much about the words on the page as it is about the world that the writer has created in their head. In order to communicate these ideas, your writing needs to be clear and understandable for any reader. Since the ideas are only in your head to begin with, the more you write, the more practice you’re getting at properly putting ideas into words.
By having others read your work, you’ll be able to find out what ideas you’re good at communicating and how to better convey the ideas that you have trouble with. This is a huge plus when writing resumes – when submitting a job application, you need to be able to showcase important information about the scope and responsibilities of your past experience in a compact space.
Creative writing can help you get comfortable with constructive criticism
In the same way that having others read your writing can help you be more concise, getting feedback on your work is essential to improving your storytelling abilities. Sometimes ideas aren’t clear, and sometimes things can be better said, but it’s easy for these things to slip your mind when writing a first draft. Another reader will be able to catch these more easily, since they’ll be looking at your work with fresh eyes. Some people bristle at the idea of others criticizing their work, but creative writing will teach you how important it is that you get feedback from a reader.
This comfort with constructive criticism can lead to more effective resumes and cover letters. You should always have someone proofread your resume, and having experience with others reviewing your work will allow you to be more engaged with the criticism, and give you practice creating the most effective resume possible.
In addition to all of these job-related benefits, creative writing is a fun, easy and mentally enriching hobby that is perfect for filling the free time that comes with summer. Whether you take an online course or just dive right in with a pencil and paper, there are all sorts of benefits to be had!