#382 The Starved Muse

This is my third time in a coffee shop. I have my computer. I have music. I have all the tea I could ever want.

I don’t have my writing mojo.

I can’t find my writing mojo. Don’t get me wrong, I haven’t just been staring at an empty page all this time. I’ve written two posts so far, but neither one is finished and neither one feels complete. One is so serious it requires major polishing and the other is much lighter but just feels…. flat. Perhaps at some point they will be resurrected but right now I can’t bring myself to keep working on them and I think it’s time to admit defeat and accept that I’ve misplaced my muse somewhere.

Back when I was writing daily, I sometimes had trouble coming up with something to write, but that’s because it’s hard to have a brilliant idea or an anecdote or something thoughtful worth sharing every single day. Perhaps however, the daily practice made it easier for me to sink straight into that space in my brain where words just bubbled up from my subconsciousness and flowed out through my fingers with very little need for direction. I’m rusty at turning my thoughts into written vignettes .

I suppose it’s rather trite to write about having trouble writing, but I know I’ve written about my writing process before, partially as a way of trying to come to grips with how it works. But when the notion of adding even one more sentence to one of my partially written pieces actually made my stomach turn in revulsion I clicked over to a blank page and just typed the first thing that came to mind.

My frustration.

It turns out that it’s hard to take stale ideas that have been marinating in my brain for months and spin them into words that existed in my head at one point but faded away when I couldn’t find the time to write them down. This forced sojourn in my writing journey has been a lesson in writing in its own way. A bit like negative space, it is all the distance I created between myself and my writing that has now illustrated that I can’t just dip in and out of my writing process at will. If it is true that the more I feed my muse words, the more ideas she gifts me, then clearly the reverse is also true. Starved of expression, she has nothing to give. It turns out that writing is a demanding mistress. I can worship at the her altar and be rewarded as a devoted disciple or struggle to subsist on the scraps of brilliance that get tossed my way every now and then. Neither is palatable to me so I will need to keep looking for another way. As with many things I’ve discovered in parenting, perhaps this is just a phase of my life that will change as our circumstances do. My schedule is not my own and in a year or so perhaps I will have more flexibility to get to work early, or maybe leave late sometimes, to give me more time to write, but right now every word that I don’t want to erase feels like a tortured step on the way up a figurative Mount Everest. Every post  I manage to actually publish feels like a hard won battle in a long war.

It’s not what I want from a hobby, but I suppose sometimes you really have to fight for the things you love. So here goes the next battle. *clicks publish*


Why this image for this post? I dunno. The trees and the sky felt so sparse when I took the photo and that’s how my writing feels right now. Sparse. 

1 Comment

  1. I can relate. I think you need to write something each day, even if it’s not published. I neglect to acknowledge how this helps me until I’m out of the habit, then stare blankly at a screen when I’m there.

    Also, I feel stress and life and work drain creativity. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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