Writing is a strange craft. We all do it, we do it every day. We write notes and lists, emails and texts. Writing is an integral part of day-to-day life; we do it often without giving it a second thought.
But to be a writer… that, I am finding, is a horse of a different colour. Even if you’re only a self-declared writer.
I imagine it’s like all things one can be passionate about; it starts permeating your thoughts and actions. It’s easy to become obsessive about and it can interrupt your most mundane activities with a sense of urgency…
“You must do this. Now!”
I find myself now thinking constantly about what to write. Can this fit into my story? Is there an analogy here I can use? Can I weave this into one of my scenes? It’s endless. What is most surprising to me is the characters that I’m writing about, they have personalities and those personalities have something to say.
And they say stuff a lot.
It started a few nights ago and has only increased frequency and intensity. I wake up in the middle of the night with the voices of my characters speaking in my head. Now before you think it’s time to call in professional help, I assure you I am not over the edge psychologically. Yet.
It’s not unusual
I don’t think it’s unusual at all to be awoken by your ‘work’. It happens to all of us. Back when I was in the corporate world, I was constantly disturbed from a deep slumber by frantic thoughts of impending budget due dates or incessant PowerPoint presentations. The difference now is these characters are telling me what to write and if I don’t pay attention, I fear it will be lost.
I’m beginning to understand why so many writers suffer from insomnia. So, what is a gal to do?
Naturally, a notepad and pencil will be additions to my bedside table. I know, I know. Bad writer that I don’t have them there already. But also, much to John’s certain chagrin, I think I’ll move my laptop upstairs before I go to bed so if inspiration strikes, I can mosey into the kitchen, feed the creative monster and slip back into bed. Hopefully unnoticed.
Having said that, if Murphy’s Law has anything to say, my characters will promptly shut the hell up.
Let’s see what happens next, shall we?
3 responses to “Nighttime Voices”
[…] remember fondly when the voices of my characters were waking me up in the night, telling me the stories they wanted me to transcribe for them. Oh, […]
I’m sure that I’ve read or heard interviews of writers talking about this exact thing. The characters want their story to be told in a certain way. I’ve often wondered how writers can be so good at dialogue for characters that are a different gender, age, background. (John Green of YA fiction immediately comes to mind.)
Hearing voices must be a promising sign. 😘
I’m hopeful that it’s a good sign too… the alternative is worrisome. Ha! xoxo