Today in the world there is a proliferation of schools of creative writing, some of which are also directed by important writers. But do they really help an aspiring writer? My opinion is yes, even if no school of creative writing can teach "talent".
A good writer "teacher", and there are many, can provide us the tools of the trade or explain how to write an excellent incipit. Can you suggest a style or how to handle grammar at best, can help us in the terrible confrontation with the white page dilemma. He can explain to us that, study, reading, curiosity, deepening, are essential elements of a writer's kit. Finally, every good teacher will explain to us that to become a writer you have to read, read, and still read. Unfortunately, many aspiring writers and poets have the habit of "not" reading. Except then to demand that others read their mediocre books.
Everyone knows that, beyond the writing itself, the beauty of a story is all in the idea. Sometimes, even in the idea of a title, the secret of the success of a book is contained. Andrej Sinjavskij in his "sudden thoughts" published in 1967, wrote: "You live your life as a fool, but sometimes you come up with excellent ideas".
This is exactly what happens to certain writers: they write a magnificent novel, beautiful, brilliant, unique, and then disappear. Without being able to catch in their mind the lost talent and that unrepeatable fresh synergy of the first time. Personally, as the most modern neurosciences also explain to us, I believe that each of us has within himself an important genetic creative component. A sort of team of specialized neurons that make a substantial contribution to our being talented writers and to our creativity. A "secret" mind, inspired and capable, that if properly stimulated can open its way to extraordinary creative horizons.
Then there are our senses: the ability to observe the world and see it different from all the others, and then there is also the transformative thought: the ability of our mind to transform our everyday life into a fervent, unique and unimaginable. Finally, it is the pleasure of telling, which is a sensation or perhaps an emotion, able, while you are writing, to transport yourself to distant worlds, to make you feel joy or pain, to make you feel the chills on your back, something as strong as pure energy that makes you feel powerful like God.
On the other hand, when we write a story, if we narrate in the third person, are we not God? The supreme being able to make everything happen, to give or take away life to our characters, to create non-existent worlds, to make people fall in love or hate, even to revive. I mean that this our "secret mind" needs to be activated, charged with energy, stimulated through the "transformative" reasoning that is none other than the ability to see beyond objective reality.
In short, if I look at a green hill I can see two things: a forest, or a million trees. An way is the input to tell the story of a forest, an way is to tell the story of millions of trees. The problem is that in a globalized world where everything has been written, it is not clear if creativity appears to be mostly the ability to shake our mind by mixing ideas and pre-existing elements and to assemble them in new dimensions of creations, innovations and feelings, or in the invention. of the nonexistent, beautiful, unique and perfect.
Ultimately, the schools of creative writing are used to teach us more or less effective narrative and poetic techniques. No school, however, can provide us with the creativity necessary to write a successful novel, because creativity is not an external element to capture but an energy already well placed in our mind, anchored in a sublime depth of our soul that shakes its wings looking for the light. We just have to manage to flush it out, to point it out, to bring it out. To bring out this creativity every writer must read a lot, be curious, proactive, imaginative, passionate, patient. Only in this way, sooner or later our creativity will explode like a pyrotechnic fire, and then we will think of the excellent idea that Sinjavsky was talking about and maybe we will finally write that wonderful novel that not even ourselves, with our fancy fantasy we would have never dreamed of imagining.
Salvatore Fava PhD