Is this normal?
I’m doing a bit of rambling today because I can.
I’ve nearly always ‘lived inside my head.’ When I was around fifteen I sat one day and started writing my daydreams down on paper. Yep, good ol’ paper and pen. No typewriter, definitely no computer. Pen in hand I’d stay up most of the night writing knowing I wouldn’t want to wake for school in the morning. Thank goodness I enjoyed school. When I got out of school, aged, my writing grew, the subjects changed but I couldn’t-for the life of me- create my own real characters, modeling each hero after a famous person (even in everyday settings- ugh!). Everything I wrote was in first person introspection and second person for the protaginist. Yeah– really bad writing!
It wasn’t until I’d accumulated a large boxful of this, as we in the writing world know it, “crap” that I decided to get serious. I wanted the world to read my “crap”. By that time I had been married for… a long time. I had three beautiful daughters and the first of four darling granddaughters by this time. And I’d finally discovered I can make up men! I love creating my heroes and using heroines who aren’t modeled after me. Who knew? Apparently the world of writing did, but I didn’t actively focus on that either. So how did I get from knowing nothing about writing to selling a book? You got me! Lol
Actually it took writing a lot more “crap”. And I thought I was the only person in the world who wrote in the special brand of putting words together. Then I discovered a secret world I didn’t know existed. A world just for people with voices living in their heads. I began to learn “stuff”. For instance, “crap” is a favored style for all writers! Well, maybe not ‘favored’, but well documented and verbally accepted. I can’t tell you how many authors have told me to write it. Really! When you get stuck, can’t seem to wake up the muse, stare at blank pages/screens- write. No matter how bad it is in the end it can usually be fixed. But the most important lesson in this is as long as you have something, anything written- it can be fixed. A blank page…not so much fixing going on there.
And another thing I learned; if you can’t seem to write anything- not even crap- IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT! (K, this was a hard one for me because I feel responsible about any of my actions) It’s true. There’s this little invisible gnome, fairie, devil- whatever yous is- that is in charge of your writing. It’s called a muse. I should have acknowledged mine in HOME but didn’t. Nobody hardly ever gives the muse credit for good work done, other than “My muse cooperated today, loves me, is in a good mood”…etc. I haven’t figured that one out yet, but if it goes awry-blame it on the muse.
But all in all, in the end- it’s up to you. If you want to write, write.
I used to think I was strange that voices lived in my head 24/7. I talked to them, directed them. Then I found out I’m not alone. This is the brain of a writer! Me! We live with our characters constantly chit-chatting away day and night. I have long lost track of missed sleep, driving somewhere and suddenly I’m there and don’t remember how I got there, conversations (in the real world) where I apparently agreed to or said something I don’t recall agreeing to or saying. I’ve also learned such is also a “normal” part of a writer’s life. Hey look at me Ma! I AM NORMAL! I listen with one ear inside and one ear outside at all times and I never know when or how a new story idea may strike. It’s kinda like lightening, it strikes where it feels the most energetic pull, and rarely hits in the same spot twice. But it almost always leaves an impression on me.
So what about you? Are you still holed up inside you head, convinced the little men in white jackets will pop up if you open your mouth? Do you wear a sign that proclaims you one of the insane who live inside your head? Speak out! After all, as a writer in these days it’s important to be able to say “I’m a writer.” If you can’t now how do you expect to market yourself and sell those little gems once they are out of your head for all the world to gawk at?
It won’t go away, might as well embrace it while you’re wrapped tighter than a burrito in that white coat. BE PROUD!
Join me here on the ranch Monday when I have the funny and talented Storm’s Interlude author, the lovely TWRP Rose, Vonnie Davis. You won’t want to miss that one!