Alter Ego: writercize #17 (A-Z Challenge 1)

Hello writercizers!  

Before I get on to today's task, let me begin by stating I'm blogging on Fridays and Saturdays for the entire month of April to work through the A to Z Challenge, the brainchild of Arlee Bird, author of the blog Tossing It Out.  Nearly 1150 bloggers signed up to blog A through Z every Monday through Saturday the entire month of April.  Tough task for the bloggers to be sure, to feel inspired six days a week, but imagine being one of the seven hosts selected to read those blogs.  Holy cow!  Arlee and team, thanks for putting the challenge out there, and thanks even more for your commitment to read through and support the bloggers.

Ok, on to writercizer business.  The topic of the day is Alter Egos.

Every human I know has at least a little something they'd like to change.  The most obvious that people mention is weight, but I would venture to say that weight is not truly the top change many people would like to make for themselves.  I would say that digging a little deeper, I'd probably discover wishes for more bravery or putting the kibosh on procrastination or exuding admirable character traits such as creativity, patience or wit.  Who knows the possibilities - there are probably 10 times the possibilities for positive improvement as the number of people I could ask - we all have something we would add or tweak or eliminate!

The beauty of an alter ego is that a person can be another character, someone who may take risks the primary ego or person would never take.  They can project themselves as another person, similar to acting, but on their own terms.  

Most often, when you think of alter egos, you probably think of comic book characters such as Superman and Clark Kent or literary characters such as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, but there are actually many modern-day celebrities who use an alter ego to gain the confidence to perform.

Joanna Douglas of Shine by Yahoo wrote about ten of them in an online article entitled Celebrity alter egos: Double the fame.  Among those performers: Beyonce as Sasha Fierce, who she describes as more sensual and aggressive than her "normal" self, Britney Spears as Mona Lisa, Miley Cyrus as Hannah Montana, Eminem as Slim Shady.  Some of the alter egos seem to be to appeal to different audiences, as those of Miley Cyrus and Eminem, while others give the artist a performance edge.

writing exercise:  Think of a characteristic you would either like to change about yourself or add to your repertoire.  Use to create your alter ego, and give your alter a name.

(Click "read more" to see writercizer response.)
writercizer response:

While I would really like to give my alter some magical power such as the Mary Poppins ability to snap my fingers and have a clean house and food on the table, or the power to pause the world while I sleep so I don't miss out on any hours of the day, I will instead stick with something real.

I also thought of something such as a cocktail trick to walk into a room and own the party.  You know the person - the one who walks in and breaks every lull in conversation, has all the right compliments and ability to engage anyone in conversation with a little sass thrown in.  I tend to be more of a one-on-one person and observer, so I can shrink in a crowd and blossom in a personal meeting, but then I realized that while I generally enjoy being around the life of the party, it just wouldn't quite be the right alter to my normal self, so I threw that one out too.

Instead, I will make an alter who has the charisma, contacts and organizational abilities to really drive myself and friends to major success in whatever they feel passionate about.  My alter inspires and connects people to create their dreams.  The name, simply - Miss X, for that x-factor that just drives and pushes anything to be the best it can be, and remains just a tad anonymous and mysterious.  In that way people don't quite know who Miss X is, so that anyone Miss X helps is seen as the star of their own success, but recognized to have just the right person looking out for them from behind the scenes.


  1. Your alter ego sounds like who you are with this blog--or as a mama. :) I'll have to think about this one for a bit...

  2. I love this idea to deepen our characters. Good post. I know I have an alter ego that only shows its face when I'm with my husband. People would be shocked if they knew!

  3. Aha Shelli - very interesting!
    Olaina - aw, thanks so much! You see my alter can actually get things done and is a stellar negotiator, which I most definitely am NOT! ;)

  4. Miss X is a great alter. And I think by inspiring writers and getting them to practice the craft through your blog you are allowing Miss X to do her work!


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