Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Writer Neurosis 101

To write, I have to have an enormous ego to think that somebody ought to read my work, ideas, and the worlds I create. (Especially 300+ pages!) At the same time, I'm pretty doggoned needy, always wanting that reassuring pat on the shoulder and good review. It's like being back in 7th grade at a school dance and wanting John to ask me to dance but he won't so instead of acting like a normal girl, I go and push him into the bleachers. This, of course, is an example. It's not necessarily what actually happened no matter what John and the restraining order says.
Regardless of my clumsy past with school dances, this odd combo of ego+insecurity has made me neurotic -- to a degree.
But, no, I don't have any funky writer superstitions like Charles Dickens setting his bed to face north/south and touching objects three times for good luck. Or John Cheever working in his underwear, wearing his only suit just to get to work and back home. The only thing I DON'T do is tell somebody about a story brewing in my head. I think I'm afraid that once I speak it, it'll disappear -- like Tarzan's great pickup line. So I wait. I let it brew. Then I write, write, write. And when I have something down, I'll only share it with a very select group of people that I know will lock this story away until I say it's okay to let it open.
So .. maybe that IS a little superstitious. But it's not OCD superstitious ... yet. Perhaps in a few years I'll have accrued a few more neurotic writer things. Perhaps.

Heidi Ayarbe

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