A couple of weeks ago, I posted a poll, asking which day of the week would serve best for a post combining my on-going features about writing technique, trends and prompts (Monday Morning Writing Prompt and Wordsmith Wednesday). Wednesday afternoon to Thursday took top spot. Several of you told me to go with whatever works best for me, so there may be some variance from time-to-time.
In today’s ponderings, I’d like to explore a topic I’ll call, Finding the Muse. It’s a topic that’s been a recurrent visitor to my blog because, from time-to-time we (should I say I?) need a kick in the butt to jumpstart truly creative writing.
Quantity writing can be a symptom of a complusive disorder…especially if that writing lacks quality. There are times when we need to find balance between writing and not-writing, with the goal of using that downtime to nurture the muse. Writing is a priority in our lives, but it isn’t the whole story. To be a good writer, in my opinion, it’s important to do more than write. We need to conceive our work before taking up pen and paper, and we need to hone the work once it’s completed.
Here are a few outside-of-writing considerations to help produce quality poetry and/or prose:
- Write what you know, but go out and learn something new so you have more to write about. Take a class, read, consult experts in other fields, learn a new hobby or skill, spend a day with someone on the job.
- Meet and interview people who have a different take on life. Write from a point of view that differs from your own, read essays and op-ed pieces. Explore other religions.
- Travel. If you can’t afford to take a trip, watch travelogues, jump on the Internet and go new places. The world can come to us through our monitors.
- Read something from a different era or country. Pick up a book or watch a movie that packed full of adventures you’ll never experience in your own life situation. Do whatever you need to in order to get out of the confines of your day-to-day existence.
- Take time to notice the details of life that is within your scope of living but that you tend to ignore. Observe the baristas at Starbucks. Watch the chefs in a diner or pizza joint. Take a field trip to a brewery, a manufacturing facility or warehouse.
- Invite your imagination to go on a date with you. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Stay home and daydream.
For this week’s prompt, chose one of the above suggestions and write whatever came out of that experience. Write poetry or prose. Make a list. Share a journal entry. Whatever. If you’re stuck in the quagmire of writer’s block or mediocre writing (like I am) this may be just the Rx you need.
To join in:
- Share the results on your blog.
- Copy your URL, access Mr. Linky at the bottom of this post. Share your name and paste your URL
- Visit and comment on other blogger’s work.
- Extend an invitation to one or more of your favorite blogger to join us.
- Have fun.
The link will be open until a new Write2Day is posted.
Image: Hesiod and the Muse: Public Domain
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stopping by to add my two-cents
Challenging challenge for those of us already time-challenged. I’ll see what I can do… 😉
Well, I think that you have combined Monday Prompt and Wordsmith Wednesday very well. It certainly presented a different challenge than the usual prompt only challenges. I have really enjoyed doing this today as it took me back a few months to our week in the hills and the great memories we have from that.
A timely and well expressed lesson for me. Thank you, Victorial I have been increasingly feeling that my writing is mostly mediocre, and that perhaps I need a break. Then I read your piece while sitting in the waiting room at the health centre this morning, turned over the crossword and woite an “observation” poem on the back. I’m letting it mature a little before posting.
I’ve been feeling the same thing about my work lately. One of the things I’ve promised myself is to go back and revise some of my mediocre work. And post it for critique. One of the dangers of prompts is just cranking out poems, I think. But the offset of that is–they get you writing! One reason for me leaving the link open is to allow time for that maturation!
GREAT challenge day to you … this is quite an inspiring way to be creative. I’ve always been a good listener. I find mindless chatter … well, mindless … so I enjoy listening. I am always inspired by the lives many of my older friends. The story I am submitting is one I experienced with one of them. This is my understanding of the emotions and sentiments of the people involved.
Hope you enjoy …!!!
In the interest of a short time frame, due to the holidays, I am submitting a short story I wrote that fits into quite a few challenges this week ….
Victoria, this is such a refreshing, healthy and sane approach to our writing! Thank you for spreading it! 😀
I just got a column at Nanotechnow, an online journal about Nanotechnology. I named my column “Nanomuse” because it will have poetry about Nanotechnology. I researched the subject Nanotubes, and I wrote a poem about them (them if you think of the aggregate of tubes, it if you think of it as a subject heading).
As usual, I await to see if this fulfills your requirements.
Tammy–my only “requirements” are that you have fun. This is just to jumpstart writing and if something works for you, all the better. I’m off to read it.