A few weeks ago The Divining Wand asked its authors: What does your Muse look like? Or what does s/he sound like? Or what does s/he feel like? Muse(less)? What inspires you to write?
Here are more of their primarily Muse(less) replies:
“I love this question, because it reminds me that writers are so diverse in what motivates and inspires them. There is a romantic ideal that presumes we all have muses, but as you know, that’s not always the case–and may not even be the case often. Of all the writers I know, only a few have ever mentioned a personified muse.
Inspiration, though: we all have that! Mine is based in nature: human nature primarily, and then the natural world. It’s the concert of those two forces that compels me to observe, select, and then set down my stories onto paper.
When I’m feeling unmotivated, I know I simply need to get outdoors and let my mind relax and become receptive again.”
“My Muse looks like the public library. When I was a child, I almost lived there. The library was the safest place I knew and it held a world of happiness. It was a miracle to me that I could go in the my little Brooklyn library, plunk down my rapidly softening from overuse card, and be allowed to take home six—SIX!—books. I read fast, so in a few days I’d be back for my next six.
Books make me happy. The idea of being side by side with my beloved authors, that’s my Muse. I consider books sacred objects, and feel tremendously blessed that my novel will be published in January.
I write because it allows me to combine the activities I most love: making sense of the world, story-telling, and scrambling words until, hopefully, I’ve reached the right combination to tell a tale people will love reading.”
“I don’t think I have a Muse. Or maybe I do, but we’re both so harried that we haven’t taken the time to sit down and chat over a cup of coffee. I’m the person who travels everywhere with a laptop. While I’m waiting for my kids to finish that last set at swim team, I’m in the car or on the pool deck, writing the end of a scene. During warm-up time at a gymnastics meet, I’m the mother on the bench with her head bent over, typing away like a fiend. Once I start reading and marking up hard copy, I travel everywhere with a large cloth bag filled with manuscript pages, a dictionary (my favorite is The Flip Dictionary), a zippered pencil case with highlighters and pencils and pens. However, I recently discovered a new coffee shop and will be writing there in the evenings. I think, perhaps, my Muse and I will finally meet. And I suspect she has beautiful highlights, visits the gym regularly and always eats a healthy diet. All the things I’d like to be.
What inspires me to write? Well, I’m very cranky when I’m not writing. My family will totally attest to this. And I have these stories in my head, fighting to get out and onto a hard drive. All in all, it’s easier to write than not to.”
“So many things can inspire me. A snippet of an overheard conversation in a coffee house, a thought that suddenly pops into my head while walking along the beach trail, or an article I’ve read in a newspaper or magazine. Sometimes doing research on a project can trigger ideas for a completely different one.”
Announcement: The winner of the Book Giveaway of Therese Walsh’s The Last Will of Moira Leahy is Robyn! Congratulations Robyn, please email: diviningwand (at) gmail (dot) com with your mailing address and I’ll have the book sent out to you.