When I am working on a manuscript of my own (I also work on other authors’ manuscripts as part of my publishing business), my thoughts are not far from it in spite of all the other things going on around me. I have missed turns while driving to a familiar place because I have been thinking about something related to my topic. I’m not saying this is a good thing; I’m just saying it’s how I am made.
Instead of having “writer’s block,” I am having to endure “writer’s bombardment”—so many words, phrases, organizational options, and ideas for other writing projects continuously interrupt my current thought, which then leads me to other words, phrases, organizational options—until I grab paper and pen. (Now I use erasable ink pens so I can still erase and yet copy if I need to. My codependence has widened from pencils to these.) Getting them out of my head and onto paper lessens the clutter so I can focus.
During one especially busy bombardment, the number four popped into my head—because, at the time, I was considering the overall structure of my next book, The Fourth Voice: Exploring Identity Theft of Another Kind. I stopped what I was doing and did a Google search. I discovered some pretty interesting things about that number:
Four is the number of the great elements—earth, air, fire, and water.
Four are the regions of the earth—north, south, east, and west.
Four are the divisions of the day—morning, noon, evening, and midnight.
Four are the seasons of the year—spring, summer, autumn, and winter.
Four are the great variations of the lunar phases.
Four is the number of creation—of things that have a beginning, of things that are made, of material things, and of matter itself. It is the number of material completeness.
I had no idea what I would find, but I was intrigued with these interesting facts about the number four (which I didn’t know at the time I drafted the working title of my current writing project. I just knew that the first three voices that I had formed my identity from had left me feeling fraudulent and searching for a truer understanding of who I really am.
In my first book, The Impostor Affect: A Closer Look by a Classic Case, I discuss my understanding of how identity is formed using the research I found on the impostor phenomenon. In a nutshell, it goes like this:
The first voice is the inner voice of the child . . . that tells her who she is as she constructs her delicate self-image by what others say and do.
The second voice is the inner voice of the teen . . . that tells her who she is as she listens to her peers and watches how they respond to her.
The third voice is the inner voice of the adult . . . that tells her who she should be.
The fourth voice is that still, small voice—of our Close Companion . . . who tells her who He has created her to be—who she really is.
I am exploring the idea of how the first three voices have stolen my true identity, and if I can hear what He says about me, and if I can believe what He says about me, I just might be free to be who He intended for me to be all along.
Oh, I have many questions—trust me! And I am purposing to be honest as I consider the implications of my discoveries along the way. But this is my life . . . and I want and need to know. And I want to share it with you.
Note: Information on the number “four” came from www.biblebelievers.org.au/number08.htm