There are two things that work, you can be overwhelmingly honest. Or you can create some kind of persona to write from.
It's the difference between Joni Mitchell (or Jewel or even someone like Colby Caillat) and Lady Gaga. Joni was being honest. Lady Gaga is a creation of Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta.
Earlier this week, we talked about how vulnerability is the secret to getting over writer's block, not to mention the source of joy. However, the most successful artists have always joined vulnerability with disguise.
They create a persona.
They stop thinking, how would Stefani act? They start thinking, how would Lady Gaga act?
Their personality itself becomes a work of art. Their whole person becomes a creation.
Writers have always done this, and the most famous examples in history are Lord Byron and Oscar Wilde. It makes sense that we would want to. We are already creating people and even whole worlds in our imagination.
Why not create ourselves?
It's not a healthy way to live, and I wouldn't recommend spending too much time “in” your persona (you have to take your mask off sometimes). However, today is Saturday, and on Saturdays at the Write Practice, we break rules.
Who is one of your favorite pop-culture figures who use a persona?
Create your persona.
What does she wear? How does he act? Is she flamboyant? Or demure? Is he kind or slightly cruel? Or is she completely evil?
The most important characteristic of your persona is that they not care what other people think.
Describe your persona. Work on this for fifteen minutes. When you're finished, go ahead and post it in the comments.