When Good Imaginations Go Bad

Thanks to Tawna Fenske for making me think of today’s blog post. (If you haven’t read her post about writers not being allowed in public…well, you should.)

As writers, is it any wonder that sometimes our imaginations get away from us? I don’t know about y’all, but it’s been like that all my life. I’m not talking the usual play pretend kids do. Sure, I played cops and robbers, pedaling after my sister (I was the cop…on the boring tricycle while she was the bad guy on the big wheels *sniff*), or played teacher (even going so far as to bring my class to lunch where my grandfather would pretend to be a cafeteria worker).

I had a great childhood in terms of creativity. My family was always willing to play whatever pretend game I’d come up with. But what happens as that creative kid grows older? Well…the imagination doesn’t stop there.

I remember being about 12 years old. I’d just started reading romance (historical  young adult romance…a book called Danielle comes to mind). My brother was 7 at the time and I was the protective older sister. One night we heard something outside and we decided to investigate. We lived in the country and we had no knowledge of anything actually “bad” happening, so we headed outside in the pitch black.

I remember peering around corners, pushing my brother behind me (even though he was nearly as big as I was…he was a twelve pound baby folks, he was never small). I pushed him behind me and whispered, “You stay behind me. You’re the family jewels.” (Okay, so I didn’t know what the family jewels were at the time. I was young.) But in my mind, I was a heroine protecting my brother (and the heir) from possible harm. Yeah. Okay.

That was 12. So why is it that I’m now 33 years old and if I’m driving home on the interstate late at night and start thinking about possible escape routes if the cops come after me? I don’t do anything illegal, don’t plan on doing anything illegal, and like a respectable citizen, I would stop for the police, but my mind goes tripping off in different directions. Should I speed up? Slow down? Turn off the interstate, turn my headlights off, and park in someone’s driveway? What should I DO?

This is my mind. You’re sorry you intruded here, aren’t you? I really can’t help it. I try to think normal…(I’m not entirely sure what “normal” is anyway) thoughts, but this brain God gifted me with just won’t stop churning out scenario after scenario. Like the morning I was driving to work (just 2 years ago)…I thought “How would I react if I had a dead body in my trunk?” No, I’m not planning to kill anyone, but these are the thoughts that pop in my mind when I’m just chilling.

So…someone has to make me feel better about this. Speak up. Do you have really peculiar thoughts that if you shared them with a person in authority, they’d arrest you, or send you in for a psychiatric evaluation? Tell Tante Danica all about it.

8 Comments

Filed under humor

8 responses to “When Good Imaginations Go Bad

  1. Oh yeah! I’m constantly thinking of new and weird ways my demon-slaying heroines can kill some nasties.

    Or, some crazy trouble my characters can fall into. What’s most fun is talking about these with fellow writers in a restaurant.

    It draws some funny looks, that’s for sure!!

    • Lynn – So far I’ve managed to avoid speaking of these things in public about writing. However, it does bring to mind an online role-playing game nearly my entire family played a few years ago. When we would get together for holidays, or dinner, someone was usually hollering across the table “You killed me!”, or “You stole my bag!”, or “How do you kill Lloth?”. People used to stare at us. A lot.

  2. KAK

    “A penny for your thoughts” is very dangerous thing to say to a writer…usually more dangerous to the writer, because you can’t help but say something like, “Bambi over there used to be Brad until he made a Faustian deal with that gargoyle perched on the fountain. You know its claws were retracted yesterday, right?”

    You should see my closet. Its full of pretty white jackets with shiny buckles.

  3. That’s so funny! I’ve been doing that for so long, but I’ve only been writing for about a year. I never thought I had any imagination until I started writing and realized my daydreams WERE my imagination!

    It’s so nice to see I’m not alone anymore.

  4. My favorite quote ever might help in your situation: “I’m not schizophrenic, I’m a writer!”

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