One of those many characteristics that lives within me, I named Instant Gratification Girl many years ago. Of course, she was around long before she was named, but I hadn’t recognized her presence.
She’s prevalent in everything I do and demands that there are quick returns on any effort I put out. This is a bit tough to square with most fiction writing, so I must offset the long term projects I pursue with blogging occasionally to give IGG (interesting acronym, isn’t it?) the feel-good she needs to keep me going.
The thing about characteristics that are deeply ingrained in us is that they are often both good and bad. This is certainly true about IGG. She has been firmly behind me when I choose to write Blog & Tweet over a weekend and The Great Twitter Adventure when I had four days off. IGG also made the Fourth of July weekend of 2011 into Twitter Days, during which I delved into Twitter for four straight days, learning how to “do” Twitter and coming away with my first 38 followers (the big payoff!). She has no problem with stringing long hours together with short breaks and little sleep. She’s a driver, big-time.
On the other hand, IGG is a problem whenever I start a new novel. I have to find a way each time to either suppress her or entertain her. It was only recently that I understood how playing a CD she loves while I write serves to seduce her into compliance. She’s the one singing along (usually out loud) while I type out my story.
This past weekend, I spent two days making eight new items for my Etsy shop. IGG was right there, waiting anxiously for someone to tell her they are pretty! She’s the one who enjoys photographing each item and putting it online. “Done!” I can almost hear her saying in my head.
I think creative types, especially, really have to find ways to embrace their various characteristics and even honor them, because it is truly the combination of those traits that make us unique in what we do.
My advice - trot out the good and the bad of each one, and give them a hand as they scroll across your brain then figure out to put them to good use.