I have people talking inside my head. They’re real to me. I made them. Sounds nuts, right? But that’s what writers do; we walk around day in, day out, with fictitious characters muttering inside our minds. I have conversations with my characters so I can get to know them, and yes, sometimes it’s out loud.
While you are going through your creation process, some people look at you like you have a screw loose. I’m not sure where people think the finished product comes from if not from our minds, but that’s just how it is. If you talk to imaginary people, you are somehow weird.
Sometimes I wonder if this is why a lot of writers are introverts. Do we slip into the arms of solitude because so few other people understand us?
Some writers, especially new writers, choose not to discuss their writing or process with others for fear of judgement, and not necessarily of the work. But if you write, it isn’t a choice. We have something inside of us that demands we create. There are things that want to be heard and they have chosen us as their conduit.
Whether it’s writing a memoir or complete fiction, if you feel compelled to write it down and bring it into the world, that is powerful. Not everyone can do it, and I think that is where the judgement of others comes into play.
If you are laughed at, ridiculed, teased, bullied, or dismissed because you write, that says far more about the people who treat you that way than it does about you. By putting your ideas down on paper, you have taken a leap of faith in yourself.
The characters in our heads make it possible for people to curl up on the settee and get lost in another world. We make people feel and experience things they may never have. That’s a gift.
So stand up, be proud, and write on.
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