Puzzling, isn’t it?
At times your loved one seems sullen, withdrawn, and devoid of communication. At other times, his obsessive drive is unstoppable, and you wouldn’t even think to try to tame his compulsion to write.
Refusing to communicate with you one minute and yet sharing thousands of words with readers can be frustrating.
Welcome to the personality of a writer.
While seemingly paradoxical, there are ways to understand them.
Here are 11 tips to understanding (and loving) a writer.
1. They are driven to write daily.
Writing is not a conscious choice. It is a need, as strong a need as any passion. Others are compelled to exercise daily. Writers share the beauty of the written word with others.
2. They are observant.
They see the beauty in things others don’t find interesting at all. For example, they are always on the lookout for an interesting photo to accompany their writing, or a new life lesson to write about.
3. They don’t listen to critics.
Instead, they listen to their inner sweetheart who encourages them to pursue their passion, to share the love of the written word with others. Their confidence that they have a voice that needs to be heard outweighs their inner critic, or any other critics. Criticizing them will only get you frustrated.The voice of their inner sweetheart is louder.
4. They are well-read.
By reading a variety of authors, they get a variety of ideas and writing styles. They might, inexplicably to you, be in the middle of many books or articles at once.
5. They embrace rejection as a learning experience.
Their craft requires them to face the possibility of rejection on a regular basis. The best writers learn to use rejection as an opportunity to grow and improve.
6. They challenge themselves.
According to Lifehack’s Kevin Kaiser, “Highly creative people wake up every morning fully aware of the need to grow and push themselves.” According to author and blogger Jeff Goins, writers don’t just talk about writing, they take action. If they need to get up two hours earlier than usual to write, they will do it.
7. They are artists.
Writers express themselves creatively just like artists do. This means writers are artists. Be proud of your artist!
8. They are inspired.
Inspiration may not always strike them at a fortuitous time. If an idea comes into their head while doing something you consider more important, try to be understanding that they may stop your preferred activity to take notes before the idea passes, never to return to their heads again.
9. They are driven to the point of obsession.
Writing takes priority over what they consider the more mundane. Chores definitely fall into this category. Writing takes priority over laundry and dishes. The loved one of the writer should learn to embrace the domestic duties since the need to write will not change. They must write like they must breathe. The dishes can wait.
10. They can write at any hour.
They will write even if it is 2 o’clock in the morning. They are oblivious to the fact that the world is sleeping or that you may think they should be sleeping. They will find a way to get the writing done, so don’t be surprised if you wake in the wee hours of the morning to find your loved one missing. You know where they are—at the computer or writing desk. You know what they are doing; they are conveying their passion for the written word. Although they can write at any hour, they write best at certain times of the day. Do not make social plans for them during the time they will usually be writing. Try and understand this and respect their boundaries.
11. They can write anywhere they have access to a computer.
Camping trips, beach trips…no place is off limits. This may include the car during a road trip you’d been looking forward to. Be understanding if your loved one wants you to drive, so their hands are free to operate their smartphone.
In conclusion, your loved one is not going to change. On the contrary, according to Lifehack’s Kaiser, creativity, and the adrenaline rush that comes from it, may actually be an addiction.
There is a song from the musical Les Miserables called “A Heart Full of Love.” Your loved one does have a heart full of love—for writing as well as for you. Certainly your loved one is worth that understanding. Writers have big hearts, big enough for both you and the written word.
Featured photo credit: Doug Robichaud via unsplash.com