Thursday, October 4, 2012

The trouble my muse causes

      I write on an almost constant basis, which has a tendency to cause a few issues in my life. I have always done it (well ever since 5th grade when my muse bit me). My mom used to say, as I was growing up, that I would space off into my own little world, but I didn't. I would be drug off into the world of my muse, okay to be fair I wasn’t kicking and screaming. No, I went into that world willing and eager.

       Now, when I say I am always writing that does not mean that I am always putting pen to paper, fingers to keyboard or however it is that I get a chance to actually get my story out. I write in my head.

      I used to be the cake decorator at Wal-Mart. Now the good thing about that was I have been decorating for over 15 years, so I didn't have to really think about my work. My fingers would do the cakes in the background. My thoughts would be on my characters and I could enjoy the unfolding of their stories. Now of course when I made faces or laughed at what my character would do or say...well, my coworkers had a tendency to look at me funny. **The bad thing is occasionally I wouldn’t hear people talking to me, as long as it wasn’t the boss or a customer I was usually okay.**

      I am a seat of the pants writer which means I don't outline, I do not know the story before I start writing and I don’t know what will happen until it happens. I have to go with the flow of the book, start at the beginning and let it go from there. My favorite thing about that is I get to find out as I go along what happens....which is why when something unexpected happened I would laugh or make a face. So I would let my mind flow and then on breaks or on lunch I would get as many notes down as possible so as not to lose the story later.

      The great thing about being able to allow my muse full rein as I worked is that I now have 38 novels completed and ready for edits. Of course the bad thing is getting them from my head and all those pages of notes, and onto the computer screen so I can start those edits.

      I now have the opportunity to write full time and I officially consider myself a professional author, even though I am still waiting for the money to think of me as one. So I have had the chance, here within the last few years, to put all those stories into the computer. In the last three years I have gotten four novels completed and the other 34 are entered into the computer, with at least 4 or 5 chapters.

      I also have several binders full of notes and 42 other novels that are only started, with at least one or two chapters going. I pull them out and work on them as they call to me. Which book that calls to me is always up for grabs, but one of them, at least if I’m lucky it is only one, is constantly running in my head.

      Now, as I mentioned, there are issues created by my muse’s constant ramblings.

      My memory sucks. My file cabinets are filled with places, people, and events from 71 novels, and some new ones that are trying to start and there isn’t much room for anything else. My attention span is small, I don’t have ADD, I just have so much going on in my head it is hard to focus on that stuff outside my head. I have always spaced off, and don’t hear when people are talking to me sometimes. I don’t mean to and I try to pay attention, but sometimes the muse’s voice is louder than the rest. As long as there is no break in the conversation I am good, but if you give me a few minutes of silence, well I know how to fill the empty space. 

      I take the good with the bad and wouldn’t know what to do if my muse was ever silent. I am lucky that my family is supportive and understanding when it comes to my writing. I try my best not to ignore them when they need my attention, but my kids grew up hearing…. “let me finish this chapter and we will go.” I tried to never make them wait long and was so excited to get my first laptop so I could just take my story with me and the kids didn’t have to wait to go to the park or wherever they wanted to go.  They never complained, probably because they knew they would get extra treats when we went out to make up for having to wait.

      Do you daydream, do you talk to yourself? For me it is the way I function every day, but to be fair, I don’t really talk to myself. I talk to the imaginary people inside my head….see, so I’m still okay.

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