Saturday, January 21, 2012

Return of the Muse

For what seems like eons my characters have been quiet.  The chatter inside my head had subsided and my writers block turned into a writing hiatus.  As terribly crazy as it sounds I am so happy because the voices in my head are slowly trickling back to life!  Their return has been quiet and slow, but steady progress is being made.  I feel a little like a deer in headlights.  I'm afraid to move too quickly and scare them away, but I don't want them to think that I am ignoring them either.  I feel the need to write write write, but I wonder will I overwork them will my finicky inner muse go silent if I push her too hard? 

I have reflected endlessly on my character's silence and my muses vacation.  This is what I have come up with, and it is no doubt a common understanding among more seasoned writers and artists but it is something that I think that each artist must come to terms with independently.  Anyway, I think I lost my confidence.  And as many writers I'm sure will agree losing ones confidence is crippling.  Feeling as if your story is common or insignificant can be a crushing blow that will stop creativity in its tracks.  I don't want to dwell on those feelings however, I want to focus on the slow return of my confidence.

It occurred to me during Nano when one of the ML's handed me a sticker during a write-in.  The sticker said, "You're story matters."  After that I started to realize that my story did matter that no matter how many other people write in your genre, your story is unique and only you can tell it.  After I accepted that everything started falling back into place.  Reading a friends first published novel, the talented Hope Collier's novel The Willows: Haven has helped to inspire me.  Continuing to write reviews for the awesome book blogger Stacey O'Neale and her site YA Fantasy Guide has also contributed to the return of my muse.  Working with a critique group has sparked an excitement in my writing.  Listening to the writings of others has really had a profound effect on my desire to write, I am excited to share with them and hear their critiques to become a better writer myself.  I have things to say and stories to tell and no matter what anyone else thinks my stories and thoughts are important and I need to share them if only for me.  I had forgotten for awhile that I am reason enough to write.  I think that every writer at some point must reach a point where they have to remind themselves that their words and stories matter.  No one is insignificant, no story unimportant, no craft that is not worth sharpening.  YOU are important and your story matters!  Don't forget that!


  1. Brilliant post, Mandi! Thank you for the kind words :)

    I think the feeling of my-story-sucks ... and I-suck-too is a story-teller's right of passage. But the important thing is you got over that hesitancy! I've been there. I still visit on occasion actually. Doubt and I were chilling earlier today till I promptly booted him in his junk and started listening to my characters again.

    Thanks for reminding me that "*I* am enough reason to write." As long as I' writing for my love of it, that's enough for me :)

  2. What an encouraging post. Too often I think of my story is insignificant. In this world of Harry Potter, Twilight, and The Hunger Games, who will care about my Louisa May? But you're right. It's my story and as long as it is important to me, it should be written. I'll be happy to see your book when it is finished.

  3. Your post Return of the Muse is quite amazing and interesting.Getting a lot of useful information and funny.Very nice sharing.