Good Morning Writers! ~ Discovering the Dark Side

March 2019

Might be the wrong time of the year to write about dark sides. After all, spring is near and we are all longing for more light. But on the other hand, maybe that is exactly the right time to have a look into all that we do not like about ourselves…

September 2014

How are you doing? How is your writing going? Are you a little bored with your usual writing or with your usual genre? What about trying out something new or discovering the dark side in yourself?

Well, of course, the dark side in yourself is not everybody’s thing to discover. There are fears and change hidden and that is not what everybody wants to delve into. But there are also chances and possibilities hidden: You might find out a skill that you never thought you have or a new interest which might lead you to a new writing genre or a new day job to finance your writing ambitions. Who knows?

I believe it is every writer’s advantage to go into the darker parts of oneself. Fears you have developed as a child might stop you from achieving all your potential as a writer or to go for that freelance job or plainly just to write that story you always wanted to write.

Besides those more practical points if you know more about your hidden parts it will help you to create deeper characters. One-sided characters are boring and do not make readers come back for more. But to create a realistic multi-dimensional character needs a little knowledge of psychology or at least a little life experience and knowledge of the parts that you rather hide from others.

We all create a persona to be able to deal with life and not end up in trouble with everybody around us. But when we are with ourselves there is nothing really that needs to stop us, to be honest with our deepest wishes, needs and longings. Of course, that does not mean to live all of them. No, but knowing what is inside of us that usually is not so good to show to everybody makes us realise where the incongruencies are within our character and therefore we can create them in our writing as well.

A word of caution though: There usually is a reason why you hide these parts from yourself. They often include traumatic experiences and to deal with those on your own is not advisable. If you realise that there are parts that cause you to panic, get depressed or rather anxious do not hesitate to find professional help. It is not always necessary to find a therapist or psychologist. Sometimes it is enough to call a help-line and find ways to deal with what came up.

But your intuition will tell you clearly how serious the hidden part you have discovered is and if it feels like you cannot deal with it on your own: Go and get help! Also if you feel you are not ready to have a look at those parts: Do not force it. You won’t help your writing and creating of realistic characters if you get yourself into a breakdown of some sort because you were not ready to face the fears or traumatic experiences that have been lurking inside of you.

On the other hand, it does not have to be that serious or traumatic. A lot of our hidden parts are just longings that might have been subdued to religious or societal reasons. To write about them in your diary or to allow yourself to discover them in a poem or story will not do any harm.

No matter what your reality is: There are parts that might want to come to the surface which will improve you as a writer if you allow yourself to have an honest and a close look at them. They might offer you a change in writing style or genre which will enrich your writing experience and bring you much further than any of your routines ever can.

In this sense: May you have an experimenting and discovering week


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