I have found that my allowance, of all my different feelings, is an unused asset as a writer I haven’t tapped into, – until now.
You might think you are in allowance of yours, but are you, really? Can you honestly say that you are ok with everything you feel or have you pushed your feelings so far back that you have forgotten which is yours? What if this is your superpower that you are hiding from yourself?
Take the space
I really write some of my best scenes when I allow myself to go through all the emotions I feel at that moment, and I mean all of the emotions. Being in such allowance of myself also requires that I take the space I need, even though the temptation is right in front of me to excuse myself to my family, for leaving them for a while (as though they need my presence at all times of the day) that I just need to go write something. Don’t excuse yourself. Just go.
Your politeness will take the edge of your writing and the inspiration that came knocking on your door. Also, give your family a break. They know when you need to write. Actually, my husband frequently encourages me to get some words out on the screen when he sees that something is off. Ever the gentleman he walks around the topic with a general question like: have you written everything you would like to write today?
Your family loves you more than you know and they will always love you for choosing to be kind to yourself. That is when you are the best role model.
Nowadays I make the space I need and my husband seldom needs to be a reminder. He is more the confirmation to my satisfied face saying “was it a good writing session?” When my feelings overwhelm me I grab my computer and go into our bedroom with a box of tissues next to me and cry with the character as I write it out.
Allowance of who?
This is the crux. Most people are in allowance of others and their needs and feelings. I certainly used to act like that until I found the surplus of energy from minding my own feelings and let others come to me if they should choose to themselves. After a while, my own feelings surfaced to my attention and at first, it got a bit overwhelming, but after a while, I started to wonder: all these feelings can’t really all be mine? Until I decided to write it out.
Of course, it is virtually impossible to write fiction without some allowance of feelings. Lately I have been re-listening to a writers class in memoir writing. In hearing her advice I realised that all those feelings I have been fighting to get rid of were actually an advantage of mine. You can read more on this in the previous post: How to use feelings to become a great writer.
After giving these feelings a character to live through and a setting to live in, those feelings that I have been walking around with, the frustration that felt off to me and only made me feel less of me, some of them weren’t mine to deal with in the first place, but a natural part of my writing life. This is how I write.
A gateway to my stories
You see, I didn’t know I was inspired through feelings. That this was a gateway to my stories and expressing myself. Now I find my feelings to be, for the lack of a better expression (but let’s be honest, I have been looking for one) this is my superpower.
Because, a superpower is something that you can use to empower you and help others, but when used selfishly or as power over someone else, it can really hurt others and scar them for life. Now, why would you do that when you rather can invite someone in, to live through your characters for a little while and act out their own feelings as they read your words, and maybe find themselves understanding themselves more? Now that is a gift.
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This text is taken from the third episode of my daily podcast series called “For the Love of Storytelling”. Get your daily dose of love for storytelling here: