Literary writing involves externalization of mind onto paper or computer screen, and a process of guided exploration over a space of possibilities. Among the arts, this kind of writing may come closest in structure and content to everyday consciousness; this has enabled writers and readers to explore the workings of minds in interactions with others. Artistic writing is a kind of indirect communication in which the creativity of the writer invites the creativity of the reader. In personality, writers are higher in openness but more often depressed than other members of the population. Characteristics on which literary creativity is based make writers vulnerable to emotional disorders. With the exception of conversation, nothing may have been as important in understanding ourselves and others as works of creative writing.
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