Writing Practice and Meeting up with your MUSE
Writing Leap #65
Have you ever seen a little baby flip from deep wails of despair to a sunshine grin and happy gurgles in less than two seconds? I feel that way sometimes when I’m in the middle of a writing project. I wake up at dawn with a queasy feeling in my stomach. I turn over and moan, “I am afraid of my book.” It’s so unsettling and perfect terrain for the inner critic to dismiss everything I’ve written so far. Then, a few scribbles in my notebook on my night table, fresh thoughts, hooray! And I’m all excited again. I clutch the notebook page and dash for my computer.
I am illustrating my picture book-in-progress with an artist friend. I have an official art background. But I have been creating with words not paintbrushes for a long time. My studio is my writing studio, not my art studio. My desk, my computer and my books dominate the space. Except—-I have a long white table along one wall of my studio covered with drawing pads, pastels, drawing pencils, snippets of wallpaper, tissue and rubber cement for collage. I sneak in small art projects from time to time. But illustrating my picture book is not a small art project. It’s a big art project.
Now I’ve been waking up terrified of my illustrations as well as my writing. But just like babies I can go from “Help!” to “This is me. This is what I was born to do,” in two seconds. I don’t know what part of my heaven is better. The part with the beautiful sentences or the part with the beautiful colors.
Am I the only one who feels this way? Frightened/Elated?
Let’s treat our muse with lots of love and gratitude.
Happy Writing Everyone,
Henry Miller’s landscape
H.G. Welles’ Self-Portrait