As writers and artist we all live in our own dark, musty vans of reality as we wait for Lady muse, the keeper of all creativity, to drive us to a new parking lot. Waiting alone, it doesn’t matter what parking lot Lady Muse parks us, all we see is the same dashboard. Poking our nose though the pizza box window is the only way to see the world.
The van we live in is the to-do list we must do, the regrets we spin in our heads and expectation that the perfect story (or art piece) comes as one beautifully wrapped gift. Lady Muse only gives to the deserving and she counts by failures. Blinders like doubt keep us in the van with its false sense of safety in the stale air we know. The unknown of fresh air seems like an obvious answer, although when faced with a blank page, screen or canvas the van of procrastination looks so inviting, even with it’s stale air. How many re-runs have I watched with my favorite snack of chips and salsa, while the blank screen chastised me? Yeah, that’s fun. So to avoid this lovely afternoon, I have to get up and write anything until something comes out. But it is more than that.
I have to accept that genius does not flow from my fingers ( nor does it from anyone’s). Writing is re-writing is a cliche because it is true. Even after so many drafts, I have to let it go and move on to the next parking lot. Letting the work go can be like sending your kid to kindergarten, where you baby might fall down. Even this post I am doubting, of course I have the option to re-write, however I am honoring another rule of writing. Deadlines.
Making and honoring deadlines keeps me from my re-runs, while I don’t have time to doubt every word. I guess I want to make sure that my deadlines allow me the time to poke my nose though the pizza box so that I can see where Lady Muse took me. More on this later….