Finding the Muse

by Ivory Soap

There is no muse.

The End.

Just kidding. But it’s true.

What we writers experience as “The Muse” is a sense of accomplish-ing. Past tense accomplishments only feel good for about five minutes, or weeks, or months. But, eventually the happy wears off. And that, my friends, is the curse of the writing bug.

A writer is never completely satisfied with HAVING WRITTEN.
He must BE WRITING, or he no longer feels like a writer.

How do we keep it going?

1. Noodle ideas every day: in the car, at the bank, while not paying attention to a boring conversationalist…wherever.


3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until an idea starts working.

With avid noodling and trying out ideas, I’ve never had to wait for more than a few days to get one going that I really like.

Waa-laa, Muse!

Now, the real trick is getting the self-esteem out of the ditch enough to even TRY step 1.


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

the Bag Lady November 29, 2009 at 8:23 am

Love your site! (For some reason, even though I’ve had it bookmarked forEVER, this morning was the first time I really checked it out….. *note to self – pay more attention!)

I recently made my own lard and now have a life-time supply, so must try making soap next!

Satsuki November 29, 2009 at 3:23 pm

My teacher always had us do sessions of free-writing for a certain amount of time every day. It could range from 5 to 10 minutes where we’d just write anything off the tops of our heads. Now I find giving myself a 3 page limit for free-writing helps. I dunno how to explain it. After that I feel like I have the freedom to move on to any structured writing I’d like to do. Back when I used to write more often I did the same thing you suggested. I’d write ideas down on notepads, napkins, etc depending on where I was at the time. It helps A LOT when you’re forgetful.

Congrats on your book btw!

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