Muse

I was asked the other day how my writing was going. The short answer was that it wasn’t. Then (before I realised what I was saying) I said I had no muse. Where did that come from? Was it my subconscious mind talking to me, or was it a knee-jerk excuse?

The traditional muse is a person, but I’ve written plenty before without one of those inspiring me, so it got me thinking – what is my muse? When I look back on my productive writing times there has been one really common element; hating work. But I wouldn’t go so far as to say my muse is the hatred of work, I think it is the fear of being trapped there forever.

Lately I haven’t been hating work. It has been really busy, and sometimes stressful, but I don’t dread getting out of bed in the mornings. That then leads me to the even bigger question; how productive would I be if I didn’t have work? Would fear of starving inspire me to write in the same way as the fear of being stuck in a hated job for the next 30 years?

Now my psychology education is pretty out of date now, but I’m pretty sure that depending on fear to motivate you is probably not a good thing. So I guess what I need to do is turn that around and find the opposite of fear to motivate me, so what is that? Contentment? Comfort? Security? The last word isn’t one I’d normally associate with a career in writing, but maybe that’s this year’s challenge?

It took me a few years to conquer the last challenge (patience) but the slowing down of all the systems at work finally helped me master that one.  It’s now time for a new challenge, so let’s see if I can use ‘a desire to attain’ instead of ‘a fear of having something forced upon me’ to become a motivating factor. Easy. 😐

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