Writing as a hobby

Writing as a hobby.

Writer at keyboard.

Are you a writer? …probably.

Almost all of us are writers in one form or another…

…whether it be a great novel, award winning poetry, or social media posts and emails. Some of it may be very functional, but often there is some element of creativity within it. This might be a joke, or a brief story relating something that has happened to you that day. If you write something, by definition you are a writer.

So now that we’ve established that you are already a writer, maybe it’s worth looking and how expressing yourself in words can be beneficial. You’re already doing it anyway, so you might as well get something out of the human need to express ourselves.

First of all, why do we need to express ourselves? Well for some it may be income, though those that can live off writing are a very small minority. If you are Stephen King or JK Rowling then you have the best job in the World, but for most of us it is about expression and response. We all like to express what we think, and when you share your joke in your social media post it’s nice to get likes, lols, or an appreciative comment.

This is essentially what the hobby of writing is all about. Expressing yourself, your passions, your dreams, your views, your ideas, etc. Putting down on paper what is inside you can be very cathartic and relaxing, and surely that is exactly what a hobby should be.

It is also one of the quickest, easiest, and cheapest hobbies to begin. Taking only the time you wish to allocate (at any time of year) and requiring just a pen and paper (though most people have access to a keyboard of some kind nowadays). It doesn’t even involve having to travel or any significant storage space.

There a numerous writing groups dotted around the country (find details here) if you’d like to enjoy the social aspect of the hobby, or you may prefer to restrict it to your armchair. It really is one of the most flexible forms of recreation, and of course is unhindered by age, disability, or background. On paper every voice is as loud as any other.

So having established what a great hobby writing can be, and how easy it is to try, why not give it a go? There’s some inspiration to get you started in our Writing Challenges, whether you enter your work or not there are always ideas, pictures, etc here that may give you some inspiration.

Here are a few tips for all writers, whether new or first putting pen to paper, if you have any to share then please send them to us here.

HINTS AND TIPS

  1. Write when you feel like it, I know that sounds kind of obvious, but what I mean is don’t sit down and think, ‘I will now write for this many minutes’ or ‘I will write ten pages today’. It doesn’t work like that. There is nothing more frustrating (and less relaxing) than staring at an empty page trying to force an idea that will not come. Keep a note pad with you, scribble a few notes as ideas come to you, then you will have the ideas ready when you do have time to sit down and concentrate.
  2. Always keep a note pad and pen with you for the above reason (your phone can also be your note pad of course).
  3. Use prompts to help you get ideas. If you read a news item or meet or read about an interesting person, add them to your ideas bank. Inspiration can come at any time so be ready. Our Writing Challenges offer starting points a picture, three words, a historical, this is a great way to get started as your first reactions when you see them should set you thinking. Also if you enter one of these you will be published and can get feedback and could even win a prize (you can find out more about our Writing Challenges here).
  4. Share your work if you can, whether this be friends or family, or in our Writing Challenges. Be careful though, remember that social media platforms, etc. are prone to anonymous trolls that have nothing to do but criticise others. This feedback is useless to you and can be upsetting or demoralising. Make sure your outlet is supportive or properly moderated. Brightideas365 has a policy of policing comments and making sure that criticism is constructive. Criticism is of course a good thing and can be very helpful, but make sure it is coming from a supportive place, or somewhere that is moderated.