When you’re a writer, you hear a lot of different opinions on the craft of writing. Are you a plotter or a pantser? Never give your story a prologue! Never touch 2nd-person narrative with a ten-foot pole!
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about my writing habits and rituals lately, and I keep pondering this one topic upon which writers just cannot seem to agree.
Do you wait for inspiration to strike or do you just sit down, shut up, and write?
I’ve always subscribed to the latter. I write every day, whether or not inspiration strikes. But recently, as I’ve studied myself, I’ve wondered, “Why do these two ideas have to be mutually exclusive?”
While I firmly believe that the best cure for writer’s block is just sitting down and forcing yourself to write, I also believe that everyone has a muse, that spark of inspiration. It sits inside all of us, waiting to be stimulated. The path to a happy muse is different for everyone, but with a little experimentation, soul-searching, and just a smidge of psychology, we can all have happy muses. If we listen to our muse, we can figure out what puts us in that ideal mindset for writing. We can be at peace with the muse and be in the best mindset for creation.
It might seem like a very romantic notion. Yes, there are rules to writing, and yes, there are techniques, but let’s be honest—there’s a lot of room for romance, too. I mean, really, you’re building worlds and people and relationships! Writing is inherently romantic.
This series of blog posts intends to help you tap into that romance and inspiration, awakening your muse and working WITH them, not against them. You’ll call upon your muse to join you for a session of writing, and they won’t put up a fight (as often—we can’t completely work miracles. Muses can be fussy buggers).
Seems a bit abstract, right? Don’t worry. We’ll take it one step at a time. In this series, we’ll cover:
- Just who or what is your muse?
- The importance of writing rituals
- How journal writing is muse food
- Making the muse work—even when they don’t want to and you haven't got time for their BS!
- And so much more!
Now, as a bit of homework for next time, I’d like for you to really think about your muse. Who or what do you think they are? What do they look like in your mind’s eye? What do they sound like? Are they nagging? Lazy? Enthusiastic? Why do you think this is?
Until next time!