Thursday, March 3, 2011
I Never Met A Muse I Could Trust
You know, I never met one I trusted. They don't like regular hours. They're always calling in sick. A more unreliable species of beings I have yet to come across!
I think writers depend on them far too much and don't develop their own RMS (Replacement Muse System).
The best writing advice I ever received came from a friend who happens to write a very successful crime series. She told me to never wait for inspiration.
That quite floored me. I couldn't get over it. But the more I wrote, the more I realized she was entirely correct.
Let me explain what I mean: writing a novel is a job. It's a job I like but it's a job. If I waited for some miraculous voice of artistry and creation to call to me, I wouldn't get it done. I'm aiming for two novels a year so I think you see what I mean!
SO WHERE DOES INSPIRATION COME FROM THEN?!
My characters are my inspiration. I know them so well that I listen to them. They lead me through the story. Sometimes I find I don't agree with a detour and I go back, but most of the time. MOST OF THE TIME: 99.9 percent OF THE TIME THEY'RE RIGHT. They might lead me to a strange and surprising place, but guess what? I find that if I look around I like it!
Creativity is a gift that writers have. We can truly press ourselves and continue on without waiting for a 'muse,' because THERE ARE NO MUSES. There is only the writer and his/her imagination. YOU are your own muse.
Writing is hard work that needs constant honing and refinement. But most of all I have found it needs real push, self-motivation and the desire to get your work out there and published.
And no matter what you keep going, you keep pushing and working and you don't stop, because even when you are published you'll find the really hard work begins. But hey, that's what a writer's life is all about, right?!