Monday, December 30, 2013

Leggings and Writing Trends


So…

I did something this week I don’t think I can forget. I bought my first pair of leggings. It was at a little kiosk in Vegas and I loved the brown and cream print. I’ve seen everyone wearing them and I’ve wondered forever if I could pull them off. At first, I was so stoked because I think they’re super cute on most people. But I’ve always been hesitant because… well, they’re LEGGINGS.

Even though I was a dancer my whole life (being used to wearing form-fitting clothes), I just wasn’t sure if I’d be comfortable wearing them out in public. Walking around in pants that are not really pants … (?)

So I took a selfie (Don’t mock me!) … to see if they really worked on me. 

And ya know… they were cute. I felt cute in them. I could do this. I could wear something trendy and pull it off. Right?

Hmmm…

As I was walking around in them the next day, I felt off. I spotted these trendy printed leggings EVERYWHERE. Some people rocked them. Some didn't. But still, everyone was wearing them.

I began to feel like I was wearing fake skin. Like I was a walking trend. This wasn’t me--I wasn't comfortable in them. And even if I could give the appearance of pulling them off, I couldn’t mentally.

Which immediately made me think of my writing.

This year, I’m not going to feel pressure to write what the world says I should write. What the world says is hot or not. Not that I’ve ever written to trends, but I think there’s always a little voice in my head that (consciously or unconsciously) steers me when I write—that’s always whispering at me to write what will sell, what is hot, what people want.

I’m not going to let that voice affect me anymore. I’m going to write purely from the heart—and tell the story I know I’m meant to tell. I don’t think I realized how much that little trendy voice affected me until my leggings experience.

Some people can pull leggings off. Just like some people can pull a rocking dystopian off. So even though leggings aren't bad, it just means I might wear them with a sweatshirt tied around my waist--or I'll probably just admire them from a distance. ;-) 

I think the important thing is for each of us to know who we really are and stay true to that. Because that is when the magic happens on the page.

I hope you all have an AMAZING New Year! 2014 is going to be AWESOME. I can feel it!

Red. Head. Out. :)

40 comments:

  1. Haha. Great analogy. I for one do not get the leggings trend. I mean, they're cute, but with a tunic or something. For the love of all that is holy, please cover your butt. Lol. I know YOU can totally pull it off, though, but it's so true that WE have to be comfortable with it. I feel like what I write has been trendy for a while but is getting pushed to the side. Yet that's all I still want to write. Oh, well. I write for me, not for trends, right? I'm so excited for 2014!

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    1. Right? I couldn't do it... I just couldn't. Sweatshirt around the waist, baby! :)

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  2. Great post as always, Morgan! Sometimes I do have to remind myself why I started writing in the first place. I hope you have a wonderful New Year too!

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  3. Your selfie is forgiven because there is no duck face.

    My wife can rock those crazy, colorful leggings. I don't know anyone else who can. But you make a great point with writing, and we stopped writing for trends long ago. Besides, I'd rather write something that I truly loved than write a fad story that my heart wasn't completely into.

    Have a great New Year, and cheers to an awesome 2014!

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  4. Bet my wife would look great in those but no way I'd let her out of the house dressed in them.
    I wrote what I wanted and it worked out. You need to do the same, Morgan!

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  5. Oh this is soooooo true. I saw a woman who should BURN them it was a tragedy!! Hahahaha....

    But the moral of that was spot on and I feel the same. I'm not going to fit the mold because I'm not a follower. I'm myself and I'm comfortable with that. Flaws, leggings, in all!!

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  6. This is the first I'm seeing of trendy printed leggings. But then again, I'm always the last to pick up on a trend. Even though you found that they weren't for you, the lesson you took from the experience was worth it, right? Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I think we need to be reminded often to be true to ourselves. Wishing you a very blessed New Year, Morgan! =D

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  7. I'm seeing printed leggings everywhere. Not everyone can rock them, but you can!

    I hope your 2014 is even BETTER than what you're expecting. Happy New Year!!!

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  8. I LOVE this post. Seriously. LOVE. And you look super cute in leggings! :)

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  9. You are ADORBS in your leggings, lol. I LOOOVE them, but wear them under dresses or tunics. Supah fun. There is NO way to write to trends. No way. I think your writing is off, and I think if you three seconds behind the trend, you've missed and are writing into a market flooded with similar books.
    I am ALL about writing what you WANT, what you LOVE, b/c at least you loved working on it. MISS YOU friend!

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  10. Love the leggings. I'd never leave the house wearing them if it were me—I don't even leave the house in my yoga pants—but I love the print.

    And I've always believed that people should write what they love. Best of luck with it.

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  11. This is a great mantra! I write for me. I write for me. I write for me! Hard to be disappointed when you're doing it for you. :)
    Love those leggings. I wear them (black ones) all the time. So comfy.

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  12. When leggings started coming back 5 or 6 years ago I was all over it, even though a few friends made fun of them (I still have a pair from Old Navy I bought around 2008). I wear long tunic style shirts or little stretch mini skirts over mine. I pretty much never wear them with a shirt that hits above my bum, so that's my advice for anyone interested in trying--use them like tights or pair with little mini skirts!

    As for writing, there's definitely a balance. Writing to a trend, you'll always be behind since what's coming out is books written 3 years ago. But knowing the market is good if you are intending to sell. Knowing what isn't selling at all can at least save you some heartache and carpel tunnel :)

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  13. I'm all about writing what I enjoy and want to write. Good luck to you this year! I have non-colorful leggings I wear under short dresses, but that's about it for me. I always feel so exposed if my booty isn't covered in leggings and I'm not wearing high boots.

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  14. Yes! That is where the magic happens! I know you have good things in store for you this year - I can feel it!

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  15. Morgan, you can totally pull off leggings! I feel the same about skinny jeans. They look so great on other people, but I don't think they're for me. Oh, skinny jeans inside boots. That's the trend, apparently, and I'm so not a part of that cute trend. Anyway, I feel the same way about writing. I had an epiphany this past year. I'll write from my heart. If others like it? Bonus. If not, it's still from my heart :)

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  16. Great analogy! I used to fence and we had to wear these tight, white spandex pants (part of the uniform), and I thought I could manage to wear them across campus to "just get home" after practice. Yeah... umm, most uncomfortable 10 minutes of MY LIFE! (and I have some other really uncomfortable moments, so that really means something). I never ever forgot to bring my civilian clothes after that (never).

    On the other hand, how would you have known you didn't like the leggings until you tried... (can you tell, I'm writing contemporary right now and I usually stay pretty close to the fantasy/sci fi?).

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  17. Great words to think about going into the new year. My only resolution for the new year is to write, everyday if I can.
    I'll have your words in my mind when I get going, remembering to write from what's within me rather than what may be expected or asked for.

    Happy New Year!

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  18. Awesome decision!

    I agree 100% that no writer should write to the market. They should write for themselves, what they love, first. Editing is where you need to keep the market somewhat in mind, but not to the point where you change your story into something you don't love. :-)

    Have an amazing New Year!

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  20. I just read a quote from "Writing About Your Life" by the wonderful William Zinsser: Write about things that are important to you, not about what you think readers will want to read, or editors will want to publish or agents will want to sell... But dare to follow your interest if they call out to you strongly.

    Let's be daring, Morgan. By the way, the leggings, despite your misgivings, look adorable on you. :)

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  21. Hey Morgan,

    First of all, can I have bonus points for commenting at five in the morning? Cookies?

    Anyway, I do like your analogy. Quite correct and do not feel pressure in your writing. Do not try to live up to perceived expectations of what you think others might be thinking of how you should write.

    I love your leggings and I might just get a pair. Just remember, as you dance, let your words continue to dance. It's all good.

    Welcome to 2014 and here's to a fulfilling time for you, Morgan.

    Gary :)

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  22. Hi Morgan - I think you'd look great in leggings - but if we feel uncomfortable we do feel that way - wear what you want and write what you want ... worreee yeee little ..

    Happy 2014 with lots of joy and happiness around you .. cheers Hilary

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  23. This is great advice for any writer, and I love the leggings analogy! I wear leggings, but always with a skirt or shorts over the top!
    I need to make sure to take that advice this year, since that's one of my main problems when writing.
    Happy New Year!

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  24. HAPPY NEW YEAR, MORG!!!!

    I loved your story.... and you are right. An author MUST write from the heart not what's hot. If not, the reader will see right through you. It's almost dishonest. You are SOOOO FULL of HEART... It's real and honest. We as readers see this. Even though magic is considered fantasy.... magic is real and alive within the words we weave into the tapestry of our works.

    Keep dusting us with your magic pen, Morg.

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  25. Epic. You are totally on the money there -- and I don't do leggings either. Capris, pants, knee shorts, and nothing tight. I don't want my bulges exposed. ;) SO, in the vein of protecting my bulges, I'm going to follow your advice, and write ME. Yay!

    Happy 2014! It's going to be rock-tastic!

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  26. Happy New Year to you too! Those are cute leggings. I would never be comfortable wearing them myself either. You have the right attitude. My year I hope to add balance which has been difficult for me in the past.

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  27. Happy New Year. I received some Hello Kitty leggings for Christmas, but haven't worn them yet. I'll eventually break them in.

    I'm subbing some books close to my heart, each one very different from the other, but not exactly what the market wants, and getting some positive rejections. I'm going to keep trying though. I believe they'll be one yes for each one. Great attitude.

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  28. I think they look great on you - they would never work on me. :)

    You are so right though to go with what you feel comfortable with. Awesome post.

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  29. I don't really understand the appeal of leggings, mainly because I don't look good in them.

    www.modernworld4.blogspot.com

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  30. Selfie is a legitimate word...although you didn't make the duck face. That would have been over the top.
    Hope you have a wonderful New Year!

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  31. La la la la LOVE the leggings, but even moreso, this post. What a wonderful analogy, and one that is so apropos to my life at this moment. It's funny, because for Christmas I got these YELLOW jeans. Sunshine Yellow or Cream Corn or Dandelion Petal or something like that. Tres cool, but I feel like a middle-aged man trying to recapture my youth or something, waiting on the delivery of my custom red Ferrari. Why? Because they're YELLOW. I've never been one to follow trends.

    Good for you and your rockin' self, Morgana. I think you rock in the long socks, and you rock in your writing. This year, the best is yet to come. Many blessings.

    M.L. Swift, Writer: The Best is Yet to Come

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  32. Love you Morgan!!! You are so totally right. (though for the record, you look really cute in the leggings!)

    Letting all the marketing garbage in my head was killing my writing spirit. For me, it does have to be a labor of love, if not I just spin my wheels and sit there staring at a blank screen feeling like I totally stink. I'm so glad you agree with me! It makes me feel invigorated!

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  33. Aloha Morg :)

    Happy New Year, first of all and I had noooooo clue where you were going with this post (and with a selfie !!! - sorry, had to mini-mock :) but once you segued into the writing I was like - oh yeah, I so get it :)

    Write from the heart, dear friend, and may all your writing dreams come true (on the page and elsewhere :)

    Looking forward to wonderful news/projects coming out of Shamyville City in 2014 and beyond :)

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  34. You look totally cute in those leggings...
    Wishing you a happy, peaceful and productive 2014, Morgan!
    Take care.
    Writer In Transit

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  36. I feel about people writing to trends but claiming not to the same way I feel about people who insist they loved a Top 100 baby name way before it even existed or was popular. What are the odds someone just happens to start writing in a hot genre or subgenre because s/he just happened to love it anyway, instead of only becoming aware of it due to lots of popular examples?

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  37. All people who wear leggings are superheroes. Leggings are part of their costume. Therefore, you must be a superhero. I thought so. In my opinion, I think I see you once a day flying through the sky. However, it could be just my medication.

    Happy New Year, Morgan!

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  38. This is so very true. And when you mentioned dystopian I was really able to understand. I've seen those kinds of books showing up a lot, I even tried one once, but it wasn't something I enjoyed. And even though it is "in" right now, it wouldn't be something I would enjoy writing. Though all authors are doing it and there is that little sense in the back of the mind that says, "If you want to scuessed you should write it too." But if we do start writing things we don't enjoy, it kind of looses the purpose to write at all.

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    ReplyDelete

 

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