A smallish break from the song challenge today.
It has been brought to my attention that writers possess the capacity for many different moods. They generally are categorized as very moody people. And most other people (non-writers) don't understand this since they catch the writer in one mood and believe that he is this one way all the time. But when the writer's mood changes it confuses people and they think something is wrong. There may very well be something wrong, but since it has to do with writing, they rarely understand. And attempting to cheer up a writer has proven dangerous.
For the non-writers out there, I have listed the moods of a writer. So you can understand and better care for the writer in your life.
1. Love the Book!
When and why: This usually, but not always, occurs when the writer first has a new idea for a Book.
The Results: The writer normally acts very ecstatic. He may do some wild things, like tap dance on the roof, stare smugly at the wall, or put on his best British accent. That is, when the writer is seen. You will find him buried in his favorite writing nook for long periods of time more often than anywhere near the public eye.
What you can do: Give the writer his space when he appears to be writing (the definition of the term 'appears to be writing' has proven to be very broad and includes "staring out the window or into blank space"). Smile and nod when the writer spouts off gibberish about imaginary people with a stupid grin on his face. The writer usually feeds himself when he comes out of writing. And don't mention the word 'sleep.'
2. Bored with Book.
When and why: This occurs during varies times for too many reasons to list.
The Results: The writer tends to avoid writing. When he does write it usually has a lot of the "staring out the window or into blank space" going on. The writer will fall into other endeavors, especially book-reading, and other hobbies that vary from writer to writer. He may be seen in public more often, but he normally looks rather put out and lonely since all his characters (translation: imaginary friends) are currently not speaking to him. The writer appears to be a forlorn-looking exile.
What you can do: Be your writer's friend since he feels lonely. But don't ask how the Book is; he will become rather grumpy. Let the writer bring up the topic himself. If he actually does so, be prepared for a lot of complaining. Just put your best sympathetic face on and all will be well.
3. Frustrated with Book.
When and why: This is a between stage. Depending on the writer it might not last long between moods 2 and 4. Some writers might even skip mood 3 completely. One of the main reasons for mood 3 may be what is commonly known as writer's block (writer's block: an absence of creative and inspiration; when the writer, his imaginary friends, and the Book are not on speaking terms).
The Results: The writer is easily irritated. He can blow quite easy, but does have a grasp on common sense still. Like during the love-the-book stage, he may do some wild things: brush his teeth upside down, take long, long walks, listen to only one song all day, and so on. Normally though these crazy antics are more a search for inspiration instead of the results of ecstatic discovery.
What you can do: Stand back. Don't mention the Book. Don't ask questions about the crazy antics (unless you want to join in). And- prepare for the coming stages.
4. Hate the Book
When and why: The writer is completely out of inspiration and creativity. Often times it comes when attempting to write, the middle part of the Book. Otherwise, one of those imaginary friends more than likely has set off some bomb and thrown the writer's plans sky high.
The Results: The writer is beyond reasoning with. He is more than grumpy or irratiable. The writer is furious. He may mumble to himself in the corner. But speaking to him is like waking a dragon. If the writer actually speaks to people (real people), it is normally unintelligible ranting.
What you can do: Leave the writer to himself, and refrain from calling the mad house.
5. Grr to the Book
When and why: This is the calm after the storm, but the writer is still on disagreeable terms with the Book and Co.
The Results: The writer's fury has passed and turned to the moping stage. He is still emotionally unstable. But now it's more likely to be tears instead of temper. His aversion to the Book has not died yet. The writer will rarely be seen writing. He will try to find other pursuits to distract himself from the Book and its rebellious state. Often the writer reads, watches television, finds a fandom, etc. If it has to do with story, and not his story, the writer leans toward it. If the writer is curled in the corner of chair with a hard face, more than likely he is stewing about the book.
What you can do: It's hard to say at this point. If the writer appears to be stewing about the Book, confrontation could be risky. If the writer appears happily employed in some other pursuit, joining him is also good. Never bring up the Book. And if the writer does so, again put on your sympathetic face, and be prepared for a one sided conversation varying from deflated to frustrated and back to hopeless.
6. Love the Book. . . Again
When and why: The writer has found a break-through in the Book. Inspiration. Creativity. A new plot angle. Reconciliation with the imaginary friends. Or a new imaginary friend. The reasons vary and are often hard to pinpoint.
The Results: The writer returns to stage one. Sometimes with more enthusiasm than before, other times less. All the same he is more determined about finishing the Book.
What you can do: Rejoice with the writer. Take part in crazy antics. It's always fun. But be aware that this just begins the cycle over again. If you've stuck with your writer this far, you are either a poor, miserable family member (and I feel for you) and/or the most wonderful and rare friend on the face of this earth (in which I congratulate you and would award you a metal if I had any).