The writer should be able to see her characters. See their actions and where they are in order to present that to the reader. As with emotions, if the writer can’t see or feel how then will the reader.

I’m going to suggest something a bit different here…if the writer can’t see themselves as a creative; how then can they create?

I have lived with anxiety and social phobia/anxiety since, at least kindergarten. I have recognized it since my early thirties. What I picture is a little monster-being that when under control lives in its doghouse, the Snoopy doghouse, while chained via its collar to a stake in the ground. The surrounding area is fenced. When my anxiety is awake where it moves within this area allows me to judge my level of discomfort. If the gate to the fence is broken open then I know I’m in full anxiety mode and need to call the creature back. This helps me work with my anxiety.

What does my writer being look like? Who or what is this aspect of myself? What do I see…visualize…when I think of myself as a writer?

This may take a few moments to reach and translate…not that you’ll notice the time. 

I see my dream library, office, personal space…and as I type personal space I also see something else, something different for daydreaming. I’m old-fashioned, I guess, as my writer space has a den-library of dark wood and a heavy solid desk with a large leather chair. Shelves surround me on three sides…no fireplace? I always thought I would have a fireplace, nope not materializing. Again, dark heavy…weighty, formal built-in shelves filled with hardcover books. Sconces at intervals on these same walls. The door blends in. You can see and tell it’s a door, but it’s…changing to a half-moon shape of planks like to a castle entrance. Again, the theme is solidness. No sound can enter this room.

There’s a puffy couch, a corner-like piece with a sectional ottoman that fits perfectly as a leg or foot rest and also a work surface. Again, dark, maybe black leather. I know there are pillows and throws, maybe in grey. They’re the only softness in the room. That isn’t to say the room isn’t comfortable; I would want and need the room to be perfectly me-comfortable.

What sets this apart is the ceiling and outside wall…all glass, no, not like a bended greenhouse glass ceiling to wall, but glass that allows full light and darkness in. No idea how any sun glare would be stopped but that’s not a problem in my visualized writer-space. I’m located somewhere that allows a full night sky to appear. I can see all the stars and the vastness of space. The wall looks out on green expanse, but there are rolling hills and mountains and open fields. A mix of everything and where none of it could really exist.

That night sky…the moon always shows itself.

Why visualize this? Why share it? I need to remember this aspect of myself and while I’m not as freewheeling in writing as I was as a teen, I am very compartmentalized. If putting my mental self in this room frees my imagination and unlocks the words inside, well, as the saying goes…so be it.

I understand and live with my anxiety self and now my writer has its space and sense of being.

Acknowledgment is the greatest gift we can give others…give it to ourselves.

Now, about that other mental space…

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