I started a new book called The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco. It was published in 1980. I’ve been writing and thinking about muses/inspiration, and on page 3, Eco writes in the introduction to this historical novel, “There are magic moments, involving great physical fatigue and intense motor excitement, that produce visions of people known in the past . . . As I learned later from the delightful little book of the Abbé de Bucquoy, there are also visions of books as yet unwritten.” A Muse strikes again!
Now this may sound weird and woo-woo to some of you, but if you’ve ever struggled to come up with an idea, for any extended period of time, and then all of a sudden that idea comes as a complete whole to you, you may know what I’m talking about. And I’m not talking just about writing; I think this applies to any creative endeavor whether it’s writing, sculpting, quilting, drawing or even just imagining. I think when we are ready for the idea and at a place in our lives where we can act on them, they come. Let me tell you about my novel idea and meeting my writing muse.
About a month ago, we went to my Mom’s house, and I actually got to sleep in on Sunday morning. A miracle happened and there were no hockey, volleyball, basketball, or Forensics tournaments on the schedule! When I woke up, I dozed and lay in bed for another hour and a half or so. (It was heavenly!) During that sleepy, half-awake, perfectly content state, I got an entire idea for a complete novel. It was like my muse had arrived to tell me this story. When my husband got up and headed for the shower, I grabbed my journal and wrote down the whole thing. It was quite exciting. But now comes the hard part. I actually have to make a commitment to write the thing or as my teacher Janet Conner says, “earn my AIC (ass in chair) degree!” That’s the whole self-reliance piece Emerson was talking about in 1841 that I mentioned previously – it still applies.
I’ve spent the last month beginning to research and fine tune my early morning novel download, but then I got stuck. The devil on my left shoulder started yelling, “Really? You think you can do this? Ha! That’s funny! Everything’s already been written! How could you possibly think of anything new and original to say?!? Who do you think you are anyway? Your responsibility is to your family and you won’t ever make any money as a writer, so why even try? Live the dream and teach high school F-O-R-E-V-E-R” (said really slowly like the kid in The Sandlot). I hate that little devil.
This blog is my giant broom sweeping him off and away F-O-R-E-V-E-R!!! And hopefully, I’ll be writing and honoring the muses and inspiration that comes to me.