Do you wake up in the middle of the night, startling your cat and significant other, searching blindly in the dark for your pen, Moleskine notebook, or your smartphone?
Have you ever dreamt of quitting your job just so that you can make a few nickels and dimes posting articles non-stop every day on various blogs and writing platforms?
Are you currently plotting your NaNoWriMo novel right now, while reading this article?
If your answer to any of these questions is Yassss!
Then good news, you’re an obsessive-compulsive writer.
But really though, what are the signs of an OCW? Based on my experience here are three things all writers with OCW deal with daily:
You Eavesdrop On Strangers Conversations For Dialogue Ideas:
Writers, you know that when some juicy details are being shared between colleagues or even your friends while you’re hanging out, you’re trying to craft in your writer’s brain how to transform their gossip into your dialogue.
Writers with OCW can’t wait to put pen-to-paper to record what they hear. Everything from a domestic dispute between your next-door neighbors who don’t speak a lick of English to the little kids that pop-off with profanity while their parents are pushing them around the grocery store basket.
Wherever you go the voices follow and no, you’re not crazy. You’re just trying to put together a great conversation, but only with the imaginary characters on the pages of your book will be having the conversation.
You Loathe Anything That Doesn’t Involve Working On Your Writing:
If you’re reading this article you fall into one of two categories: a full-time writer or a full-time writer with a day job. Either way, nothing makes you hate another human being, task, or day job like NOT working on your Work-In-Progress.
When the clock strikes 5 p.m you’re rushing through traffic, racing to eat dinner, and making sure every last head hits a pillow, just to get some writing time.
You’ve Lost Track of Time Thanks To Your Writing:
True story: In high school, I attended a dry General Chemistry I college lecture with an Australian professor that looked like a short, pink, and balding kangaroo.
I spent the entire lecture writing in my journal. I spent the entire class writing. By the time the class ended, I had two chapters fleshed out and no knowledge of electron configurations. Later, that story became my first self-published sci-fi romance novel, and I flunked that chemistry class.
So, when you go through marathons of endless writing, and you get so involved in your work, that day becomes night. And, eventually, you’re missing out on showers.
Then, you forget to feed yourself (and your pissed-off cat), and then your hubby is asking you when you’re planning on doing laundry.
Just know that when you look up from your work, you’ll know time’s up and you’ll wonder where’d it go.
It’s okay if you’re an Obsessive Compulsive Writer, just learn to be balanced.