There have been a lot of these images going around Facebook lately. This one about writers is one of my favorites (along with the one about moms with Victoria Beckham, soccer ball on hip). How does society view you? How does your mom view you? But, of course, the real question is, how you do view yourself? What is your writer’s image?
Whenever I read a book, I always like to image the author as she typed the words I’m currently reading. Of course, even though I am a writer, I never imagine all the mistakes and rewrites and edits. I always seem to imagine the author holed up in a dark room, madly typing the words exactly as they are on the page in my hand. I’m sure the author would laugh hysterically if I ever told her this. Maybe she’d be flattered (I sure would).
When it comes to my own writer’s image, it’s not quite so inspiring. I try to imagine myself outside or near a window with my laptop on a cute little wooden desk, sitting in the perfect typing position, characters dancing in my head, writing away. In reality, I’m usually half passed out in bed with one eye watching the latest episode of Supernatural and a half a click away from Facebook (where I come across funny pictures that make me ponder life’s questions).
As I type this (on my phone) I’m in the car driving from Arizona to Colorado, where I will be living in a couple of days. That’s what got me thinking about it. Where I lived up until today, there wasn’t much for writers, but when moving to a bigger city, my first thought was, “How many writer’s groups are there?” I was thrilled to find out a large group and yearly conference was just outside my new doorstep.
Local writing groups are my guilty pleasure. Being a part of a professional, focused bunch of peers makes me feel more professional and focused myself. Attending meetings and mingling with other hardworking writers somehow begins to change my image of my writerly self. Suddenly I see myself more like the writer I dream of being, which subconsciously leads me into being more like that writer in real life. Motivated. Awaited. Confident. Inspired.
We all know there’s no such thing as the writer who leads the uninterrupted, perfect writing life we like to image, but doing what it takes to create a healthier writer’s image of yourself gets us just a little bit closer.
How do you view yourself as a writer? What inspires you to be more like the writer you want to be?