6 Side Effects Only Writers Experience

Many of us love a good story, article, and novel, and inversely authors love writing for themselves as well. If we don’t love what we write, how can we expect other people to enjoy them? However those who write have such a vivid imagination, what I’d like to call the “movie effect” that it doesn’t just turn on or off depending on whether or not we’re in front of paper or a computer, it bleeds into our very reality. Here are some of the things that occasionally happen when you’re an avid writer:

1. You always want a perfect ending that ties everything together.

Not saying that authors don’t love adding cliffhangers, but even with cliffhangers, authors have settled what they needed to settle in their plot. When you carry the writer’s blood, you always want to find the best solution in conflicts and usually, you want your way to play out in the end so adamantly that it’s hard for you to accept when they don’t happen like that because you’re so used to having your story ending the way you wanted it to. However, you’ll soon learn that people aren’t like your characters who say what you want them to say and do what you want them to do. The perfect story ending doesn’t exist in reality and that’s hard for many writers to cope with because even if it’s a-not-so-happy-ending, they still have the image of a beautifully tragic conclusion for the protagonist. They want the storybook ending.

2. You imagine your life as a series of movie scenes.

You see how you would want a movie of your life to pan out. You see the close ups and angles of your face as you see your loved ones heartbreakingly walking away from you or as you’re happily surprised. You hear a specific song to enhance the scene that just played out in real life. When you’re doing something epic like riding a motorcycle, driving a car at top speed (while obeying traffic laws hopefully), or even just running across campus trying to beat the clock to class, you immediately hear a badass rock song in your mind — you become the main character in the action movie of your life. Sometimes when you find yourself sitting outside on a bench on a perfectly sunny and breezy day, you close your eyes, seeing the camera panning the scene around you then doing a beautiful close up of you enjoying the weather. You hear the envious sighs at having flawless skin and perfect facial bone structure, how your make-up was on point, or how your hair billowed flawlessly along to the mild breeze. When you say something witty and comedic, you can hear the crowd’s laughter as you smirk confidently. Everyday life experiences become vivid cinematography that comes with its own soundtrack.

3. You seize the opportunity to say something dramatically tragic, profoundly wise or metaphorically deep, then get so amazed at what you said you had to write it down to use for a writing piece.

Authors are uniquely eloquent in their language when they’re writing, but sometimes that spills out into their everyday conversations. When asked for advice, you sit back and lay the wisdom on your young grasshoppers — you’ve lived through and fully grasped the emotions and situations they’re conflicted over or have analyzed the situation in depth like you do with your possible character models and the possible plot lines in your story. Because you exercise feeling emotions and getting into your characters’ minds, you have the capacity to be empathetic yet analytical and so, you seize the opportunity to say something profoundly wise because this is your forte — this is what you do in your spare time and partially, you want to feel as cool as the character you’re writing about in your story so you could describe the emotion later. Other times, you like to exclaim comedic or hyperbolically tragic lines to lift the mood. Your friends might also groan when you grab every possible moment to use a metaphor to describe something simple or to relate it to something in their life, but you know they secretly love your weird descriptions. No opportunity is wasted when it comes to trying out lines with potential.

4. You embody the personality of the character you last read about or are writing about.

Readers take on the traits of their favorite character after reading a novel and writers do so as well. It’s as simple as taking what you like — you buy things you like in stores, you pick the friends that you like, etc. In this case, you enact the things that you like about a character because you want to be more like them. Sometimes though, for writing purposes, writers take on the character as an experiment. Instead of analyzing their character profiles in their imagination, they want to live and think as the character does so they can fully grasp the role and avoid plot flaws in character development. You’ve probably stared at your mirror and acted out a character’s reactions and tendencies in order to describe their actions and expressions better, more than a couple of times.

5. You see people and experiences as things you can use for your stories.

You become a detective and collector. When you meet people or even when you look at your friends, you sometimes like to analyze their character profiles in depth. When you experience something, you analyze the things that happened to lead up to it and attempt to portend the different paths that could result from it. Everybody you meet is a candidate for a character model and every experience is a candidate to be a descriptive point in your plot.

6. You probably have a playlist for every emotion to capture the feeling as you’re writing.

You’ve probably all have set your “sad” playlist as the rain poured and stared at your window longingly, as if you were a depressed protagonist, imagining that whoever you’re thinking of was looking out their window too or lying in their bed frustrated and sad about your fight as well. You’ve probably plugged in your music while you were in your shower and belted out a powerful, classic, and heart-wrenching love song, pretending that the water falling down your cheeks were makeshift tears or the clichéd downpour that mirrored and expressed the sadness in your heart. You’ve probably sat in your room, picked a specific playlist of an emotion, imagined a scene that went with the song, and you’d find yourself acting out the faces and reactions that would happen if it really did happen. Then, as the song that incited the inspiration continuously plays on loop, you write like the wind before the scene slipped out of your mind or before the emotion dissolved. TC mark

featured image – Ella Ceron

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