|The author, Dane F. Baylis|
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Revisiting The Muse-less Muse
On day 27 of this challenge I was asked to talk about my muse, check it out at Talk About My Muse . At that time I said I didn't believe in muses. At least not the variety that we run into in mythology or incredibly bad cinema. I have never had a muse, though I've bullshitted a couple of young ladies from time to time into believing they were filling that and other rolls. (Come on...if you're a guy you know you have too!)
I have had several mentors. These came in the form of teachers, instructors, other writers, artists of various disciplines, editors, and publishers who were kind enough not to tell me where to catch the next bus. What I learned from every one of these people was that the only voice that would be whispering in my ear was my own. The trick was to fill my subconscious with the right ammunition so that when I needed to hunt up a reason to keep sitting my ass in this chair (the immutable 1st Rule for Writers) I wouldn't have to look far.
All I have to do in those moments of doubt and frustration is begin to swivel my chair around and there it all is. Cd's of incredibly creative music and my guitars and amps. Percussion instruments and harmonicas. Sketch pads, canvases, pens, ink, charcoals, pastels. Books of poetry - modern and not - atlases of places I've been and places I can only imagine. Notebooks full of finished stories, projects in progress, and an intimidating collection of 'what the hell was that supposed to be'?. Files full of references and those quiche little bits of motivation and inspiration. Need I continue? Why not!
Worse comes to worse I will sit down and make lists of nouns, or verbs, or just write over and over, "I am a writer, God Dammit!" But, and here's the cute part. Were you paying attention? I SIT DOWN AND WRITE. It doesn't have to be brilliant, or even coherent. So long as it's my ass in the driver's seat I don't have to count on the muse for a ride. Like Hemingway said, "I write one page of masterpiece for every ninety one pages of shit. I try to make sure the shit goes in the wastebasket." The secret - shhhhh - is f***in' write!
I'm soliciting short fiction to 1200 words, poetry to 25 lines, and carefully crafted essays for the Your Work/Your Love page. No payment there, just the glory! Submit by email to firstname.lastname@example.org . There are gadgets to follow or subscribe to this blog on the right side of the page. Love the company and it helps with the search engine placement. If you want to comment, critique, or have questions you can use the form at the bottom of the page.
As always...live, love, write.
Dane F. Baylis