The Ellusive Creative Muse…

n44As writers, most of use know where our inspiration comes from…that ellusive and somewhat fickle creative muse.  But how do we keep our muse talking to us when real life gets in the way?  Or when we find our minds full of clutter and noise?  What do we do then?

I have had a major lesson in this lately.  Real life has thrown some serious punches…and my muse has reacted by hiding.  No seriously, HIDING.  As in GONE.

So, what did I do?

Well, a published friend of mine reminded me that the cure to writer’s block is to stop focusing on the quality of the writing, and just WRITE.  Plan on writing garbage.  Write, knowing that you will delete it. 

HOLY COW…THAT IS SO FREEING…writing with no expectations.  NONE.  ZIP.  ZERO.  ZILTCH!!!

For the past few weeks that is exactly what I have been doing. Writing with no expectations at all.  And guess what happened…today, peaking out from under a large stack of revisions I really need to start was my muse.  Smiling and ready to work again.

Now, I don’t know if she will stay…but there is a good chance she is coming back for a while.  YAY!

What about you?  How do you deal with the elusive creative muse?  Any tricks you want to share?

8 thoughts on “The Ellusive Creative Muse…

  1. For some reason, doing the dishes or taking a shower really gets the wheels going for me. Or skipping around in my story to something that I know needs to happen. But in worst case scenarios, you are right…if you just sit and write SOMETHING, knowing full well it’s horrible and you will delete it, it usually unlocks something and the words start to come again.

  2. I’m so happy for you that your muse is back!!!🙂 Yay!

    When that happens to me, I do the shower thing (why always the shower?), and sometimes I make my husband come up with hokey writing exercises for me. That way I don’t even have to think of what garbage to write and can just go for it.

    I hope life stops punching you soon–many blessings to you and your family!

  3. I’m glad you found your muse!
    Yeah, I actually love just writing freely and have no problems with it, except I worry that it doesn’t “count,” since it’s not a work-in-progress or a revision or whatever. But, all writing counts! And also, I don’t need to keep track of everything, but just do it.

  4. I just read something last night where an author claims that she rediscovered her muse by going on early morning runs. Supposedly something about working out (running, walking)first thing in the morning unlocks your subconcious and unleashes your creativity.

    Interesting, right? I’m totally going to try it.

  5. Christine Fonseca

    Lisa – I am so into the run/jog/walk thing. I wear that is how I figure things out ALL THE TIME. So definitely try it.

    Michelle and Rebecca – A bunch of authorly friends have recommended the shower thing as well – though I must say, the shower works best for me!

    Annie – I am SO glad you cqan just do free writes. Makes this whole process so much easier.

  6. I just posted about my muse yesterday! Mostly a certain playlist will spark ‘something’, whether it is worthy of being kept in the manuscript or not is never certain, but it will at least get me going..

    But I am with Michelle. It never fails, if I am stuck and I go and wash dishes, I can come up with at least another chapter or two just standing there at the sink staring out the window off into space…

    Glad you found what works for you!🙂

  7. Um, I complain to you? LOL. But seriously, removing the fear of that darn delete key is the best advice ever. Don’t be afraid to delete. It really is freeing and helps me realize that every word I pen isn’t gold, and that my first drafts aren’t set in any kind of stone. I’m glad you’re feeling your muse again!

  8. uppington

    Hey, I’m glad your muse is back! Something I learned during Nanowrimo is this: when your muse is hiding, and you don’t feel like writing, write anyway. Set up a challenge with a friend, and see who can type the most words in 30 minutes. Expect a lot of trash, but there is nearly always some nugget of gold hidden in there somewhere that you can come back to.

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