Good morning! Join me in welcoming author Jordan K. Rose as she discusses 'The Muse' and the writer's life. There's plenty of room, all the furniture is comfy. We've got Roobios caramel flavored tea and scones with caramel bits hidden inside. Make yourself at home and enjoy!
Getting in “The Mood”
I hear other writers discuss their muses all the time. I listen. I wonder. I listen some more. I concentrate on being one with my muse.
I’m pretty sure it’s because I don’t have one. There isn’t any goddess or power inspiring me to write. It’s just me and my ideas. That’s it. No mystical element spurs me onward to create characters and worlds and give them terrific problems, which seems a pity as I’d love to have someone else to blame when plotlines go south.
But instead, I have only myself. I don’t think I’m alone in this. I’m fairly certain many other writers don’t connect with their muses either. So the question then becomes what motivates a writer and how does she remain impassioned.
If you’re a writer, whether published or not, you’re driven to write, to get your story down on paper just because. Period. Deep inside you know your story needs to be told.
So that’s the first point. The motivation is internal. As Nike says, “Just do it.” And so we do.
But not many of us have the opportunity to sit down and write a novel from start to finish without interruptions when inspiration hits.
Life interrupts every writer’s process. It just does. The dog needs to go out. You have to go to work. Your family actually wants to spend time with you—and not just listening to your latest and greatest storyline.
With all this happening how does a writer stay focused and motivated? I don’t actually know. Well, I don’t know what works for everyone every time. I do know a couple tricks that help me.
I freely admit to attempting to be organized and not enjoying it or being remotely successful at it. I have not only one notebook with handwritten notes, but three and sometimes four. I have sticky notes everywhere, websites bookmarked to the point of not knowing what is where and even if the folders I’ve created make any sense.
In a nutshell, I’m a muse-less disaster.
I’ve tried reorganizing with labels on each notebook and a simple, yet forced system of colored folders. I’ve refused to allow myself to do certain things until other, less fun tasks are complete, like organizing the desk.
I’ve failed in most of these attempts. Oh, my desk is neat when I undertake the organizing swing (which personally I think is someone else’s muse running amuck in my head!).
It has occurred to me that organizing is my way to avoid writing. Yes, I know those of you who can actually see the tops of your desks right now are tsking and rolling your eyes. Some of you think my chaotic desk is the reason I don’t have a muse. You probably think she’s hiding with a cold compress on her head and a cup of herbal tea at her side.
But some of you understand where I’m going.
The fact is in order to write we have to be comfortable in our writing space. That space needs to be full of flowing energy where sparks fly and goosebumps raise on your skin when the next great bit of dialogue comes to you.
Whether you write on the back deck or at your desk with papers everywhere you must be happy in that space. You have to let your worries about what is happening beyond your writing bubble go and drop yourself deep into your story. Then just write.
That, for me, is one of the important elements to creativity.
The second key point is dealing with mental clutter.
If you thought my desk was a mess, you’d best never take a peek inside my mind! It’s equally as cluttered and disorganized and generally confusing, but in this I know I’m no different than anyone else.
I don’t know a single person with only one thought occurring at any given moment. If you’re a published writer, you’re most likely thinking about your next book and promotion of your current book.
We can’t help it. It’s been drilled into us: promo, promo, promo. Then, of course, you have all the other things to consider: what’s for dinner, did you turn off the iron, should you get a drink, if you have to meet your mom at 1, what time should you leave because the traffic could be bad, we need butter, etc, etc, etc.
I’ve tried several different strategies for dealing with mental clutter, most of which centered around not writing until everything else was completed first. This was done under the guise of helping me focus.
I’ve since realized I am not helping myself using this tactic. Instead, the part of me that hates being told what to do considers this process to be torture. I get nothing done because I’m too busy rebelling against my own plan.
It’s taken me several years but I’ve come to accept that I work well or at least better in chaos and clutter than I do in neatly organized space. I don’t like everything stacked and filed and labeled. I enjoy rummaging through my notebooks and scrambling for my sticky note with that particular thought about what some tertiary character was wearing in a scene that’s only going to get deleted anyway.
It’s my random thoughts about what the billboard on route 95 reminds me of that help me remember where my heroine was going when she found out the hero lied to her.
My point is in order to connect with our stories in such a way that we can write them for ourselves or to share with others we need to be comfortable physically and mentally. So every writer, published or not, needs to find what works for her and then just write.
I’d love to hear what works for you. Do you feel more creative in certain rooms or at a certain time of day or during a particular season?
After trying her hand at many, many things- from crafting and art classes to cooking and sewing classes to running her own handbag business, Jordan finally figured out how to channel her creativity. With an active imagination and a little encouragement from her husband she sat down and began to write, each night clicking away at the keys with her black Labrador, Dino curled up under the desk.
A few short years later she’s entered the publishing arena with no plans to ever turn back.
Jordan’s a member of several RWA Chapters.
Her first book, Perpetual Light, is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance Ebooks from Crescent Moon Press.
Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/Perpetual-Light-ebook/dp/B007COSXB0/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1330177727&sr=1-3
Barnes and Noble Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/perpetual-light-jordankrose/1109252447?ean=9781937254063&itm=1&usri=perpetual+light+jordan+rose
All Romance eBooks link: http://www.allromanceebooks.com/storeSearch.html
Her second book, The Demon Mistress, the first Eva Prim novel, is set to release in October. Learn abouthttp://evaprim.com/AboutSOWClub.html
Find Jordan on her website at www.jordankrose.com.
Follow her tweets on https://twitter.com/#!/jordankrose
Like her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jordan-K-Rose/307285709309992
Find her on Pinterest at: http://pinterest.com/jordankrose/
-- Lynda Again,
I can definitely relate to 'the dog needing to go out' since I just acquired a puppy. And I've been in a quandary about where to fit my writing while I'm attempting to housebreak and train said puppy. I think we need more hours in a day (just like everyone else, right?)
Have a Blessed Day!
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