Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde Me, Please!

Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde Me, Please!

Happy facecrying face  

OK, I know. The title is pretty lame. But right now I feel like I am two people. Two  very different versions of me. It may be because I’m in the middle of too many things in my writing life…the least of it being the actual writing. Spending hours trying to get just the right words on the page may not sound productive, but it actually keeps me sane. The “business of writing” does just the opposite. And I want to hide from that.

Like Stevenson’s famous story, there are two personalities vying for my attention. There’s the cool, calm Dr. Jekyll Writer. She has a lot to do, but she gets it all done with no stress and an ever widening smile. She enjoys the flexibility and knows she can walk away from the craziness at any point. Oh, I think she bakes fabulous cakes and pies too. Her Match.Com profile would be something like this: Dr. Jekyll Writer loves being busy and productive. She also likes long walks on the beach, pina coladas, and honesty in her mate. Her baked goods have earned her praise, and if you call her, you’ll find out why they call her “cupcake.” Some days I can sort of be like her. Except for the cool part or the baking. I am decidedly un-cool, and everything I try to bake, I burn. But there are some similarities. Dr. Jekyll Writer doesn’t yell at people or send threatening emails. Neither do I. Usually. She likes to get things done in a timely manner. So do I. Usually.

However, lately, and mostly because of the business side of writing, Ms. Hyde has been sneaking up behind me and jumping into my body. (Think of the movie, “Ghost,” and not the sexy pottery making scene). Ouch! Well now I’m grumpy and more than a little snippy. And instead of being productive, I want to slash manuscripts and hang up phones. Ms. Hyde’s Match.Com profile may be a little like this. Ms. Hyde is up for the fun of a good fight. She loves throwing pens across the room, screaming at computers, and blaming everything on other people or the weather. She’s feisty, this one. Call her and see why they call her “stormy.”

Of course, like most of us, my real personality is neither of these extremes. I do like working and accomplishing things, but I don’t like the ensuing chaos that sometimes accompanies it. That chaos is what can bring dear old Ms. Hyde out. When I feel her about to ambush me, I literally want to hide. Yes, yes, “literally” is overused these days. But in this case, I mean it in the real sense. I want to find a hole to crawl into, wait until things blow over, and then emerge with a smile and a plate of freshly baked cookies. But it doesn’t work that way. Things don’t always blow over. There are problems that need to be solved in both our professional and personal lives. Hiding doesn’t get anything done. But just for today, in order to fake out Ms. Hyde, I may just go into hiding. While I’m in that hole, I am going to complete some revisions and not worry about contracts and copyrights.I may sneak out to enjoy some time with friends and family and hang out with my grandchildren (who always make me smile). Just for today, I will not get caught up in furiously flying emails.  Ms. Hyde can rage all she wants, but just for today, I am not letting her in. Instead, I am going to ignore her and eat some of those freshly baked cookies. Carbs be damned! Who’s with me?

8 Comment(s)

  • by Sandy Perlic Posted February 25, 2015 4:49 am

    It might be a lot less stressful if everything were under your control, but when it’s out of your hands it’s hard not to feel stressed! Hope you can resolve things soon. Meanwhile, pass some of those cupcakes!

    • by ellenleventhal Posted February 25, 2015 10:24 pm

      I would love to share my cupcakes with you! Somehow we will all meet in person! And eat lots of cupcakes while we celebrate successes.

  • by Sydney O’Neill Posted February 25, 2015 7:19 pm

    I hope things take a turn for the better soon and you can send Ms. Hyde into hiding. Thank goodness for those grandkids!

    • by ellenleventhal Posted February 25, 2015 10:25 pm

      Yes, Sydney. The grandkids do help. I love writing and a lot of the hoopla that goes along with it, but ugh…some of it!

  • by viviankirkfield Posted February 25, 2015 9:50 pm

    Ellen…you are such a darn good writer…this post had me rolling on the floor…and also wishing I could be there to give you a hug. Yes, we all feel that way sometimes…but not all of us are so adept at putting those feelings into words. 😉

    • by ellenleventhal Posted February 25, 2015 10:26 pm

      You are too sweet! Not so sure how adept I am at anything these days, but that too will pass. Now YOU Missy, have some great things ahead!

  • by Monica Shaughnessy Posted February 27, 2015 3:58 pm

    Dr. Jekyll is good, but Ms. Hyde can be very, very persuasive if introduced sparingly. I WANT you to throw a few (metaphorical) pens, Ellen. I WANT you to get a little mad. Drop the cupcakes and show them you mean business! Roar!!!

  • by ellenleventhal Posted March 3, 2015 3:11 am

    Oh I have been roaring. Both metaphorically and literally! Talking about the whole business side in general. Ugh…I just want to write. But alas, I have had to be a bit Hyde-y. 🙂

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