Writers are rare birds. We like to separate ourselves from the rest of the flock when we do our work. Solitude is our natural inclination.
We also like to be comfortable. So, so very comfortable.
When I was in college, I could only write if I was wearing my “writing shirt” – a grubby, hole-filled, but incredibly soft and heavy shirt. It kept me warm. It anchored me – a security blanket across my shoulders. It wasn’t meant for others to see, it was only meant for me.
These days I don’t have the luxury of wearing “comfortable” (read – not appropriate for public viewing) clothing. My office is on the first floor and it’s me who has to get up to answer the door. I’m there when the kids come home from school and work.
I don’t wear pajamas. I don’t wear sweats and I’ve long lost that beautiful (to me anyway) writing shirt.
That doesn’t mean I’m not comfortable, of course I am. Discomfort takes away from creativity.
But it does mean that I am a little more put together than I was in earlier writing days.
And guess what? My writing is a little more put together as well.
Co-incidence? Maturity? Experience? Who knows.
But here’s a suggestion. If you have a comfortable uniform that you wear when you write, and you find that your writing may be getting a little sloppy, a little too relaxed – try mixing things up a bit.
Put on a button down shirt.
Wear shoes instead of slippers.
A cardigan instead of a stained sweatshirt.
Even consider upgrading your writing utensils to something a little more polished.
We’ve all heard the advice to “dress for success. In this case”, why not try to dress the part of a successful writer? Updating your outfit may turn out to be nothing. It may not change your writing one bit, but then again maybe, just maybe it might jump start some creative spark.
You’ll never know until you try.
Wendy Thomas is an award winning journalist, columnist, and blogger who believes that taking challenges in life will always lead to goodness. She is the mother of 6 funny and creative kids and it is her goal to teach them through stories and lessons.
Wendy’s current project involves writing about her family’s experiences with chickens (yes, chickens). (www.simplethrift.wordpress.com) She writes about her chickens for GRIT, Backyard Poultry, Chicken Community, and Mother Earth News.