Have you ever just wanted to go into the bathroom, shut the door, turn on the shower, and sit in the tub, letting the water pour all over you? Never even bothered getting undressed, simply sat under the water however dressed you are. No? That is what I’ve been feeling like those past few weeks and everyday the want only grows. I believe this is all due to stress; the voices are not helping.
Some of them have wild and crazy ideas that I would never dream of doing in actuality, some are more tame. Ironically, its the tame ones that alarm me more than the others. The good thing about writing fiction -professional, hobby, or otherwise – is that none of it is real. It can be whatever the writer wants it to be and, because I get so emotionally drawn and attached to my characters, I could live vicariously through their lives. Could.
For example, the earlier statement about the shower, if I can’t do it in reality then surely I can have a character do it for me. Write out all that I have going on in my head and feed it to the character. Even if a new one – someone random – had to be created solely for that purpose. It’s okay to put real emotion into the character, it gives them substance, dimension, gives them a slice that the reader can relate to.
I think that many are afraid of putting their feelings into the character. They think it makes them vulnerable. I’m not saying that someone should make a character that is a carbon copy of them-self – that may be a bit strange – but, if the character is angry, you get angry. Sad, you get sad.. The same for happy, confused, and the whole well of emotions that are out there. How is a person going to write a feeling when they have no feeling to give?
I also think that, if you’re in a situation that you don’t know how to deal with, writing it down is a step to admitting that there is a problem. Nothing can be solved if you’re in denial.
This character of mine, she’s sitting in the tub, fully dressed with her knees pulled to her chest and head bowed. She doesn’t say anything, nor does she move, as the water impacts the back of her head. The water begins to soak her hair, sending streams down her face, the clothes get wet and start clinging to her body. Arms around her knees she slowly rocks back and forth, taking slow breaths and being careful of not getting any water in her mouth.
The sound of the water beating off of her and around the tub mask the sound of her quiet sobbing. The streaks of water from her hair unto her face mingle in with the tears so there is no difference. She’s taking this small moment, this quiet time in the shower, to herself hoping that the water will wash away all the things that weighed heavily on her mind. So much to do once she left the confines of the bathroom. So much to hide under a guise of confidence she was amazed there was room for anything else. Out there she had to be strong, there were people that depended on her, that needed her; weakness wasn’t allowed.
I can do it, she says to herself. I have to do it.
A few moments later and a voice from outside the bathroom door calls to her and quick reply saying that she’ll be there soon. Reluctantly she turns off the water, wringing out her wet clothes and hair the best she could before engaging in a towel. It was time to quickly don fresh attire, cover up the wet hair, and step into the role that everyone expects to see.