Article by: Adam Z.

Graphic by: Rhia M.

Though many of us may think of creative writing as some futile task that we are required to do in our English classes, or even just as something displaced by the popularity of visual and cinematographic media, what we are missing out on is the thread of connection between creator and its audience. In light of the many social, environmental, cultural, and political occurrences that dictate our everyday lives, this is changing. Writing can therefore be seen as a medium to share a specific point of view that another person may not realize. One localized experience, once put into words, can be spread throughout the community. ISM, in its endeavors to help create this bridge, is also making students aware of the more personal benefits that can be obtained.

For instance, with existing creative writing opportunities ranging from the Miguel Syjuco creative writing course to the high school literary magazine Liham, ISM is home to many creative writing enthusiasts. Junior Pari P. cites both of the above opportunities as significant contributing factors to where she is today, stating that “the opportunities ISM offer have exposed the values of and the artistry behind storytelling a lot more, helping develop a passion in a constructive, educational environment.” In addition to helping her develop a passion for writing, Pari added that just “getting to express oneself through the various ISM creative writing programs with friends is a really therapeutic experience.”

ISM offers the perfect springboard, but there are also roads that lead into even wider scopes. Senior Minsoo K. has taken initiative in out-of-school creative writing opportunities, stating that his primary motivator is how “art is not meant to be kept to oneself, but rather, shared with as many others to appreciate.” A firm believer of this philosophy, Minsoo is in charge of the online functionalities of a student-run magazine entitled “The McKinley Review.” Having received submissions from all over the globe, Minsoo enthuses how “it’s an honor to read through the words of people we have never met and know so little about, but still get an ‘aha’ moment.” His collaboration with other like-minded, accomplished writing peers has also led him to learn new techniques and stylistic elements to use in his writing. This has benefited him in the long run, with Minsoo attaining multiple creative writing accolades such as recognition from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards and multiple publications online.

The power of words is not to be underestimated. They have been known to inspire change in any way imaginable. So next time, when you come up with an ingenious thought, jot it down. Whether it be in the medium of a personal essay or a poem, or whether it be in the style of a humorous adventure or a melancholic soliloquy, you never know whose life you’ll change. Creative writing, in essence, is only limited by the imagination of the author.

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