How to summon your Muse

Sometimes, as a writer, you may feel you have Writer’s Block. (That isn’t exactly a real thing, but it can feel real, if you let it.) You feel your Muse has left you, that you must wait for Inspiration to strike, and in the meantime, you are cursed to spend weeks or months or years contemplating a blank page with something like existential dread.

If you are such a writer, how can you entice the Muse to descend upon your humble keyboard/typewriter/notebook?

Traditionally, there are a number of methods:

  • Gaze at paintings, listen to music, read your favorite authors for inspiration.
  • Read your own past works for inspiration.
  • Meditate.
  • Change your Facebook status to “Writer’s Block :(” and hope you get that magic number of Likes that fixes your problem.
  • Get wasted, plastered, blasted, drunk, or otherwise intoxicated.

Do these methods work? Eh.

Some of them are good for adding extra oomph when you’ve already got the ball rolling. But as a means of climbing out of a rut, they’re hit-or-miss. Let me put it this way: If your car only started as often as these methods work, you’d say your car was pretty much crap.

So what do you do?

I know of only one reliable method. Lacking inspiration, just start writing anyway, and produce a first draft so awful that the Muse will look down from Mount Olympus, read over your shoulder, throw up in her mouth a little bit, and say to her eight sisters, “Be back later, I gotta fix this.”

Even then, I can’t promise your writing will be good. But I bet it’ll be better than a blank page.

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