When the Voices Talk, I Listen
Listening to: Sucker Punch Movie Soundtrack
Recently I was joking with a writer friend about how “insane” we probably seem to those who don’t know us or understand writers’ minds. Hell, even to our families and friends likely think we seem a little off at times. My Hubs often tells me “You’re so weird ” when he finds me mumbling at my laptop as I try to figure out a plot issue or staring off into space oblivious to what he’s saying to me. I imagine my search history from research I’ve done for past manuscripts seem unsettling to him. Most recently, the edits I've been working through have hijacked my mind to the point where I'm more excited about the story I'm telling than doing pretty mich ANYTHING else.
The thing is, when you devote chunks of your life to writing—developing characters, dragging them through the various machinations your mind creates, throwing chaos, madness, and plot bunnies at them—you more often than not hear voices in your head driving your story forward. Now when I say I have voices in my head, I’m not saying that in jest. I do hear voices, a lot. This doesn’t mean I suffer from some psychological disorder. No, what it means is that at any given time my characters are making their wishes known, telling me they disagree with a course of action I’m forcing on them, and explaining how they’re going to fix the mess I’ve created for them. They talk, I listen, I write.
So you can call me crazy, and think I’m a bit off, and eye me like I need to be placed in a special white jacket, but I’m not alone. Every writer I know is a bit “off”, a bit eccentric, a bit quirky. You have to be when you spend so much time in your own head, creating worlds and painting them into existence with words. And you know what? I’m 100% okay with people seeing me that way. The voices in my head are too.