If you’ve ever thought about pursuing a career in creative writing, you may be wondering how to get a major in the subject. Luckily, it’s not as difficult as you may think. All you need is the ability to write and the desire to tell stories. As a creative writing major, you will be taught the ins and outs of writing a compelling narrative and how to put it to use in your own creative works. Additionally, you will be introduced to a variety of popular literary genres and encouraged to experiment with new styles and approaches to storytelling. As an English major, you will also be exposed to the work of greats such as William Shakespeare and Herman Melville, helping you to develop an understanding of how literature and creative writing functions as a whole. By taking this major, you will be able to open up new opportunities in terms of your future job prospects and, as a result, your life overall. Let’s take a look at how to get a major in creative writing.
Apply To As Many Top-Notch Creative Writing Programs As Possible
As mentioned above, obtaining a major in creative writing is relatively easy. All you need is the desire to study the craft and the ability to write. With these two factors in mind, you can apply to multiple top-notch creative writing programs and, as a result, maximize your chances of being admitted into one of these prestigious institutions. Of course, you should aim for a highly selective school if you want to pursue this major. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a situation where you are competing with a large number of aspiring writers for limited spots in a class which only has a few seats available. Having a small student body means that you will have a chance of being noticed and, as a result, gain the recognition you deserve as an outstanding writer. Remember: the more highly selective the creative writing program, the better the quality of education you can expect to receive.
Take General Education Courses
Since you plan on continuing on to graduate school, it is essential that you develop your general education courses to include both creative writing and English courses. Remember, a common myth about getting a major in English is that all you need is to have taken English classes in high school. However, to become a successful creative writer, you will need to develop your critical thinking skills as well as your vocabulary and command of the English language. Therefore, it is essential that you take a few English courses at the undergraduate level before you declare yourself ready to begin your creative writing studies.
Maintain A Good Academic Record
Now that you’re a few courses into your undergraduate degree, it’s time to begin taking your courses seriously. Remember that your professor’s may not know anything about creative writing, but they will certainly know how to assess your work. Consequently, you may find yourself failing a class due to poor academic performance. If this happens, do your best to explain to your professor the reason behind your poor performance in terms of what you’re learning in class. In all honesty, it may be that you’re simply not able to keep up with the material despite your best efforts. If this is the case, it may be a good idea to take a class or two at a time rather than all at once, enabling you to succeed where others may have failed. Alternatively, you could consider taking a semester off and returning to school after you’ve regained your composure. Hopefully, you will not encounter any serious problems with academics as you pursue your major.
Take Your Studies Seriously
As previously stated, your professor’s know a lot about the English language and teaching you to write well. However, your course material may not always pertain to the craft of writing. For example, you may be studying Shakespeare’s work, analyzing his use of language and the various rhetorical devices he employs; all excellent and valuable information which will aid you in your quest to become a better writer. What you may not be studying is how to market yourself as a writer, which is an area many creative writing majors have to learn quickly in order to succeed in the industry. To put it simply, you must learn how to self-promote and get your work published if you want to make a living as a writer. The more you study, the better you will become at promoting yourself and, as a result, be able to earn more money with your writing than you could possibly imagine.
Join A Society Of Writers
One of the best things which may come from joining a society of writers is the opportunity to network with other professionals. If you are looking for a way to make connections and gain valuable experience, consider joining a writing society. In addition to enabling you to learn how to self-promote, the members of a writers’ society will be able to provide you with useful advice and tips on how to turn your creative ideas into publishable work. If you are in need of inspiration, consider attending a writer’s festival where you can network with other professionals and get an idea of how others are approaching creative writing. If this is possible, why not give it a try? You may find that it’s the best way to learn how to write and the only way you can become a successful creative writer.
Think About Going Into Teaching
If you’re looking for a way to make a living, you may wonder whether or not to pursue a career in teaching. After all, having a degree in English and being able to write proficiently will make you much more employable than a non-graduate with no academic credentials. Having said that, a career in teaching may not always be the best option for a creative writing major. In some places, such as Australia and New Zealand, there are no guidelines or regulations regarding the number of teaching positions which may be provided to English and creative writing majors. In these countries, the availability of jobs may be extremely limited. If you’re looking for job security, teaching may not be the best option for you.
The Job Market For Creative Writers
If you’re looking for a job as a creative writer, you may wonder where you’ll fit in on the corporate hierarchy. As mentioned above, due to the increasing number of people who are pursuing a career in writing, many jobs may not be readily available. However, that does not mean you will have a hard time finding a job. It is still possible to secure a position as a creative writer even if there are no jobs available at the moment. Remember, self-promotion and building a portfolio are essential if you want to succeed as a creative writer. Additionally, participating in literary festivals may provide you with the connections you need to find your feet in this competitive industry.
Deciding to pursue a major in creative writing may not be an easy decision. However, with a little creativity and the ability to write, you can make it stick. Furthermore, you may find that many jobs in this industry do not require a college degree. Having a major in creative writing may open up a variety of opportunities in terms of your future job prospects, enabling you to build a better life for yourself and, as a result, pursue your creative writing studies with a newfound passion.