Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Damning the muse
It’s the writers’ fault.
Yup—we have met the enemy and it is us.
Many writers (and other creative type folks) wait for the muse to speak to them, to tell them what they should create. No muse, no creation.
Sorry, I think that’s a bunch of horse pucky.
I should retract that statement a bit. If you are writing JUST for your own enjoyment, and never, never, NEVER, want anyone else beyond your family to read it- by all means sit around and wait for the muse to strike.
But if you even have the slightest feeling that you’d like to be published and read by total strangers—you have to kick that muse in the behind and get her/him to respond to your needs. Excuses such as: “I’m just not inspired today.” Or “My muse just won’t settle down.” Or even better, “My muse got so drunk, she/he can’t see straight and is now in lock up in some tiny foreign country.” Ain’t going to work if you want others, and yourself, to think of you and your work in a professional manner. If you don’t think of yourself as a professional (we’re not taking pay folks- mindset) then how can anyone else?
If I were to tell my boss at my 40 hour a week day job that I really just wasn’t up to working, because my muse was off playing beer bong, how do you think that would go over? I work, I get paid, I’m a professional at that job.
Now, I know some folks start crying, “But creativity is different! I have to follow my muse to create things!” Again we are back at the farm viewing the results of a stall cleaning adventure.
Lack of inspiration, a dead muse, writer’s block, all are excuses to get out of something that is hard—aka writing.
I don’t think it’s a news flash to most of you that writing is a world class PITA (Pain In The Ass). It’s hard work. It’s working when we don’t want to. It’s sticking to a deadline or goal even when no one else but us cares.
We, as serious writers, need to find ways to bring our muse to us. To show up every dang day and write something. Work on something. Touch our writing to remind ourselves that that part of us exists. If you need things to get yourself to write- great. Some writers use the same music for a project. Some use the same scents. Whatever you need to get your muse to come play (if you are a muse driven person) do it. BUT if that muse is still off drunk in TJ, you need to go on without them. YOU are the writer.
Damn the muses, and full steam ahead!
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I agree, sometimes the Muse needs a kick start which means sitting down and just writing. And the sitting down and writing is hard. Enjoyed you blog.ReplyDelete
Thanks for coming by and commenting, Mary Frances :). Agreed-- the hard part is for us to keep writing with or without a muse :).Delete
I'm glad you liked it!
I have a friend who decided on journalism in college. She worked in the ad business, worked for a small town paper and, now retired, still puts in an article from time to time. She is a pro. If you want, she can whip up a theses grade paper on paleo-geology or wax poetic in a 500 word article on hearing aids. My muse is an absentee landlord and I once asked her how she did it. She said she would gather her research, sit down and start typing. "I told myself I had to write something before I could get up to pee, surprising what a great motovator that can be."ReplyDelete
LOL!! I love the story! Ok, that would definately make me write faster.Delete
Thanks for coming by and commenting, Dianna :).
I never thought I had a muse until you mentioned music and scents. Then I got to thinking about how I play a game of Free Cell every time I sit down to write. Is our muse a ephemeral creature whose mercy we are at? Or is she a routine we must adhere to before we can put finger to key? Perhaps we should just make our muse the routine, which starts (as others have stated) by sitting down and typing without excuses.ReplyDelete
I like the pee idea. I think I'll use it. What with the amount of coffee I consume, my fingers will be flying.
Great thought motivating blog, Marie.
That's true- muse or routine? And I agree, if we can make our muse be in our routine, then we have control, not some figiment who may be out getting carded at a bar.Delete
Tell me how the coffee + writing + no peeing works, Sharon!
Thanks for coming by and commenting!
If your muse is down in TJ enjoying a Corona, I say "Fire that muse!" I do have muses, but they are pros ... They drag me to my computer every day. My real life muses check in on me, never asking me how much I'm writing, but making sure I'm writing. We all need our support systems.ReplyDelete
LOL- yeah, some folks have trouble controlling their muses, CJ. But it sounds like yours (all of them) are doing a great job!Delete
Thanks for coming by and commenting!