You’re not fooling anyone.
I know what you really look like underneath that human costume. Yep, I know what you are, and it’s not normal.
In fact, you’re not even from this planet. You’re a stranger visiting a strange land. You don’t remember though, do you?
Huh, maybe your memory got wiped before you entered your host body? I’m pretty sure that’s what happened to me because I definitely lack the skill set required to operate this temporary bag of bones.
So my ignorance lands me in unpleasant conversations with the indigenous population. These exchanges press me to keep quiet or speak in my foreign tongue.
I typically choose the latter, ramble nonsense, and wonder why I didn’t just phone home.
Except I stick around, stand there, and suck in my stomach.
This stance tightens my shoulders and disturbs my breathing patterns. My discomfort leads the locals to think I’m too rigid and serious.
One of them thinks I should take drugs to calm my nerves.
You see, I was at a conference a couple months ago, and as I exited an elevator, someone said, “If there’s anyone who needs to smoke pot everyday, it’s him.”
Whatever. At least I know what the natives are saying about me.
Know What You Project Into the World
I sometimes come across like an extraterrestrial.
I’m okay with people witnessing my alien oddities. What bothers me is their supernatural powers.
Because I can’t understand how they make “normal” human behavior look so easy? Were they given an instruction manual that I never received?
Anyway, it turned out that elevator guy wasn’t the only person who had issues with my conference oddities. Another guy went out of his way to tell me how he felt before we parted ways.
This other guy and I were grabbing our bags to leave when he said, “You scare me.”
He muttered something else about how how I’m constantly disappearing and reappearing in rooms. He said he needed to “keep an eye on me.”
Why does he care if I’m playing hide and seek with his species?
I left that guy with these words, “Get home safe. I’ll be watching later.”
Separating Yourself from the Pack
I have no idea how to be “normal” through the eyes of Earthlings.
That’s a real challenge because I detest feeling out of place. It’s just that I despise acting like someone else even more than my desire to fit in. Especially when it comes to my writing.
So as long as I’m here among mankind, I’m committed to performing on the page as myself, the alien I am. I recommend you make the same commitment because like we touched on earlier…
You’re an alien, too.
Except I’m thinking you’re having a hard time expressing it? Or maybe you’re having a tough time accepting your alien origins?
Incoming message from the homeland: Your alien roots will help you stand out in the crowd of writers trying to get noticed.
Of course, getting noticed and being your alien self on the page comes with a healthy helping of truth. So let’s take a quick look at that truth’s good, bad, and ugly:
The Good: Your alien oddities are your greatest strength.
- It’s a liberating thing to finally transcribe your true self on the page. You’ll find yourself sharing thoughts in ways you’ve always wanted to express them. You’ll also better connect with audiences because humans love reading stuff in ways they’ve never before experienced.
The Bad: Your alien oddities are your greatest weakness.
- Your uniqueness is exactly what prevents you from being yourself on the page. Your weird ways want to be released but instead, they lead you to delete words immediately after writing them. That’s because those words feel out of place and different from what the humans expect from each other.
The Ugly: Your alien oddities will be criticized by the masses.
- People will point at you like the visitor you are. They’ll want to know why you think you can get away with being different than them. So they’ll go out of their way to remind you how you’re not fitting into their planet’s writing customs. Then they’ll look for other people to join their lynchpin mission.
Embrace Your Alien Heritage
Too many storytellers waste years on this rock without showcasing their most unique qualities.
We’re only guaranteed this one run with the homo sapiens, so I challenge you to spend it being the odd writer you’re meant to be.
That means you must embrace your birthright because it can empower your writing and help you connect with your true fans. Just be aware it can also become the very thing that freezes your writing, too.
In the end, you must process that being your alien self on the page will cause some folks to dislike or even hate your writing.
But come on, those people were never your real audience anyway, but more importantly, they do not have the authority to banish you to a galaxy far, far away.