LETTERS FROM THE EDITOR: FINDING YOUR MUSE
Yes, we need to know how to market our books. Yes, we need to learn how self-edit before we submit our manuscript to a professional editor. But first and foremost, we need to be inspired and beat writer’s block so we can write that story or novella or novel that will reach the readers’ hearts.
Inspiration isn’t something we can summon with a deliberate contraction of our mind. Inspiration is something that finds us when we show up in the world, inviting and welcoming the same as the delicious scent of fresh bread makes you push open the door of a bakery.
Inspiration shows up when we are present in the now and, as the award-winning author Lynnda Pollio beautifully explains it in her presentation for the Self-Publishing Mastery Summit and finds shelter in our hearts. From there, she starts whispering, and her whispers become vivid scenes in our mind’s eye and words we hear and sensations in our bodies and people that look so real that we reach our hands in front of us to touch them.
We don’t know when an entire hour is gone then two then a day then a week until the world we perceive to be palpable becomes an illusion and the world on the paper turns real.
Listen to the Whispers of Your Heart
The heart keeps whispering, and our fingers move on the keyboard in a desperate attempt to keep up with it. And the characters… they suddenly get a will of their own, and we can just witness them walking up the dark alley we know they should avoid or hiding a rose behind their back to surprise the girl they fancy.
There is no size fits all when it comes to finding and nurturing inspiration. Conversely, stress, fear, and anxiety, especially in uncertain times like those we live now, kill inspiration. Your doubts, inner-critic, and limiting belifs have the same effect. You see, inspiration is an extended state of consciousness where we connect with realms we can’t grasp with our physical senses. Stress and fear cause us to shrink and condemns to survival mode and limited life experience.
This is why you need to stay centered and balanced, no matter what happens around you. You can use your life-style habits—including eating and sleeping as well as mindfulness tools such as meditation and breathing to achieve this goal. We go in detail about it in our four-week program “Stress Less, Write More,” to help you to become a better writer, stay healthy, and thrive as a professional author. At the end of the day, you’ll notice the steps you’re taking to stay inspired enhance your entire life.
I’d like to leave you with one idea coming from Terence McKenna that hopefully will empower and motivate you to not give up on your muse even when she is moody or late.
“Artists are the only human beings allowed to talk about my inspiration or say a voice told me, that have a vision that must be absolutely realized,” he said.
Artists have a noble mission and that is saving the soul of mankind. If artists can’t find a way, said McKenna, there is no way.
Cover picture by Edu Lauton.