Life is more fun when you play games.
“Creativity is intelligence having fun.”
Sometimes our muse needs a little cajoling to sprinkle fairy dust on our pages and inspire us to new heights of creativity. When wooing a wayward muse, a spirit of play helps! A few playful thoughts:
Change places: Feeling sluggish and uninspired? Your muse may need a change of space: Getting moving! Go someplace different: a new coffee shop, a new lunch spot, a store you wouldn’t normally explore. Fresh spaces can create fresh views.
Listen in: People say the darndest things! Just catching a few lines of a conversation may be all you need to get your creative juices flowing. Walking in the park one night, I heard a young woman say to someone (probably her mother), “My books are my boyfriends.” What a line!
Take notes: If sitting in front of the page isn’t working, tuck a notebook in your pocket and go for a walk. Jot down anything that strikes your fancy: capture it in a few choice words or phrases. As you amble, let your mind wander. If a wisp of an idea floats up, catch it.
Read around: Bust loose! Read outside your genre: If you’re writing a romance, read a thriller. If you’re writing a thriller read a romance. Read a horse magazine or one on knitting or the theater at your local library. You never know where a fresh idea might come from. Get out of your reading rut and you may discover something amazing!
Free write: It may sound counter intuitive, but if you’re wrestling with the page in a current project, leave it and just free write. Get a fresh sheet of paper and start pecking at your computer keys or letting your pen glide across the page. Let the words flow without any investment in what comes out. Sometimes looseness frees us up.
Brainstorm: If you’ve hit a rough plot patch, you can sometimes skate over it by diving into it. Challenge yourself to come up with five or six totally new scenarios or ideas for resolving it. Set a timer and give yourself 15 minutes to generate them. See what bubbles up: Your ingenuity might surprise and delight you!
Any techniques you’ve found helpful in wooing a wayward muse? I’d love to hear them as we all write on!
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