Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Weekly Inspiration: The Muse

Perhaps it's a little bit odd to do an inspiration post on inspiration itself, but lately I've been thinking a lot about the concept of "the muse."

Muse auf Pegasus by Odilon Redon

In her recent blog post about fitting into one publishing category, author Edie Claire described her muse as a woman, "Betty the Bumblehead," who can't seem to lead the author into one particular genre.  I love the notion of the muse as trickster, a source of inspiration, but not necessarily the inspiration we think we're looking for.  My current muse, if she does in fact exist, is an elusive little sprite who only makes an appearance about five minutes before Jack decides to wake up from his nap (they're clearly in cahoots).  She's misguided at times, convincing me an idea is brilliant, then rudely informing me that the idea is, in fact, terrible.  She appears when least expected, and often when least needed.  And of course, she has been known to vanish when I need her most. 

I search for inspiration every day, on design blogs, author blogs, in books, magazines, movies, the people I know and the places I see.  Some days, I find more inspiration than I know what to do with, and on others, I have to force myself to work on my novel, or even to write in this blog.  My muse is sensitive - she has been known to go into hiding for weeks when I receive a particularly painful rejection - and she is easily discouraged, not a particularly flattering trait for a muse to possess.

But for some reason, I continue to have faith in my muse.  Hopefully one day she will reveal the secret to my success.  For right now, since she is nowhere to be found, it looks like I'm going to have to be the one to force myself into the basement to work.

Then again, maybe she'll decide to make an appearance once I start.  That's the thing about my muse - you never know when she's going to show up.

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