How Did You Know That?

I don’t have an inspirational video or photo to support this post. I looked, but suspect it isn’t something writers are always comfortable talking about. Maybe it’s too weird a concept for even us to fully own¸ but I’ll bet you dollars to donuts that if you’ve been writing long enough it has happened to you.

You’ve written an original scene, maybe even wondered where it came from and then something in your work materializes in your real life. Cue the Twilight Zone soundtrack.

It’s happened to me more than once. Kind of like when you think of someone and then they call you.

People today are more willing to accept that thought is energy and when you are receptive, you are able to pick up that energy. Like you have a butterfly net just as a butterfly is flying past you. So when you think of a specific person it’s entirely probable that is because they are thinking about you.

Okay, I’m buying it so far, but can you explain what is happening when I name a character and soon after meet someone with that name. I’m not talking about your Mikes and Bobs or Sallys and Sues, I mean unusual names, names you don’t hear every day. Do you think I’m picking up the energy of someone’s path about to cross mine? Maybe yes, maybe not. I don’t have the answer.

I had an instructor once who warned her creative writing students to not get freaked out if they wrote something only to have it happen in their life. She suggested by nature writers are observers and people watchers and that often times we observe and pick up things without realizing we are even looking. Recently, a guest speaker at my monthly writers’ breakfast called it her writer’s brain which saw and processed more than her normal brain could ever hope to absorb.

In other words, you may be watching your sister and her husband and not know that you have picked up the subtle signs that he is cheating on her. Soon afterward, your male protagonist has an affair. Then you hear that your brother-in-law is cheating on your sister. The coincidence may weird you out, but in reality your writer’s brain saw the affair and you plopped it down on the page.

To push this point a bit further, I suspect when I am writing and am in the zone that I have slipped into theta brainwaves. (Theta brain waves, measured at 4-7 Hz, are the brain state of REM sleep (dreams), hypnosis, lucid dreaming, and the barely conscious state just before sleeping and just after waking. Theta is the border between the conscious and the subconscious world, and by learning to use a conscious, waking Theta brain wave we can access and influence the powerful subconscious part of ourselves that is normally inaccessible to our waking minds.) It makes sense that when you are in theta that you are able to access the stuff you didn’t know you saw.

So, I still think I might be a bit psychic, but more likely I have a big, fat writer’s brain.

I would love to hear when and where this has happened to you.


Filed under Writer's blog, Writer's journey, Writing

4 responses to “How Did You Know That?

  1. Doreen Smith

    Very interesting!

  2. I have had dreams that have subsequently come true, but thankfully none of my writing ever has. If what I write ever starts happening in real life we should all be scared.

  3. Mona Blaker

    My most recent strange event occurred a few weeks ago. I woke at 2 am with a character’s name, nickname, profession, country of origin and a visual of his face, ~so vivid that I couldn’t get back to sleep for an hour. And he didn’t play out any scenes in my mind, the details above are all I got. Since then, I’ve see his first name quite a few times, in unexpected places (and it’s not a common name). He is bugging me and I’ve got to sit down with a pen and let him skate his story across the pages.
    ~Love it when this stuff happens! :o)

    • Absolutely, he’s calling to you. I had that happen last year. For about a week I kept seeing the word Spring (it was autumn). I had asked for a sign where I should send one of mmy stories that needs a home. I figured Spring had to be in either the name of a publication or where the magazine was located. I did find a magazine that came out of Yellow Springs. Sent the story off to them, convinced they would beat a dusty path to my door – nope, just another rejection. Go figure.

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