Please welcome Kristyn M. Phipps to the blog. She’s talking about the three people inside every writer.
Every writer has three people occupying his/her mind: the Researcher, the Writer, and the Inner-Editor (me, myself and I). These three people have specific roles to play in your writing, but they will not always get along well. My people have names and very different personalities. Have you ever run into writer’s block or a conflict with your writing? It is probably due to two or more of these roles being active at once. Let me introduce you to my girls, and maybe this will help you out:
(1) The Researcher – Jennifer and I first met in my Freshman history class. She’s got a thirst for knowledge like no one I have met. She enjoys countless hours in the library reading encyclopedias, memoirs, and other writings that have something to do with the topic at hand. Jennifer is focused, single-minded, and project-oriented. She is slow to move from one research topic to another. If I’m not careful, she will eat up all of my time. (And trust me, my social life suffers when she’s in control!)
(2) The Writer – Emma introduced herself in my Sophomore English class, the year I had to write a 1,000 word essay on The Scarlet Letter. This is my favorite person to work with, because she’s completely creative. She has the ability to look at Jennifer’s notes and go with it. She creates places, plots and people I had never given a moment’s thought to. Emma has ambitions and continuously tries to multi-task too many projects, so I have to keep her at bay or she’d never finish a project.
(3) The Inner-Editor – Doris is a meticulous, deadline-driven perfectionist. She’s the drill sergeant that stands over my shoulder as I let Emma do her thing. Doris is present during the entire research, writing and revising stages. She doesn’t usually allow others to learn from their own mistakes; she accepts nothing but the best, and pushes everyone else to their mental limit.
I know you are probably thinking I’m crazy for giving these functions names. Each one has a function – a purpose – in writing. By naming them, it helps me to identify my issues in writing, and put them in order. It has taken me a while to tame these characters and keep them in balance. Here are three easy things you can do to help tame the me, myself and I in your writing:
(1) Research just enough to know what you are writing about. Get comfortable in your genre, with your writing idea. Let your researcher read other novels, dig for information on the internet or library for information your writer will need. Don’t spend so much time researching that you have too much material to work with. And don’t
(2) Write what you need to – outline, synopsis, plot, etc. Then work from that. Don’t stop in the middle and let your editor interrupt your creative train of thought. Rather, take notes in a separate document or in a notebook.
(3) Only after you are done writing, let your inner-editor go back and fix the notes made by the writer. This will prevent your inner-editor from stifling your creativity when writing.
One last hint – believe in your topic, your genre, your subject. Everyone has a story to tell, and it can only be told from your point of view by you. Have fun and challenge yourself!
Love this take on the three personalities of a writer. I need more of 1 and 3. My Emma loves multi-tasking too.
How about you? Are your writing personalities similar to Kristyn’s or completely different?