© 2019 by JERRY GIVENS

Inspiration? Right now? Really?

October 23, 2015

From September 14, 2010

 

Okay, this might be more of rant than anything else. Here we go.

So, this week is very busy for me with my full-time/non-writing job (hey, I've got to pay bills somehow) and there are certain things that I need to do in order for me to survive with my sanity. Like sleep.

Last night I was lying bed, trying desperately to bribe the sandman to put me under ("I know where you can get more sand. I'll tell you if you help me."). Too bad he knew that he can just Google directions to the beach. Damn. It was one of those nights where I looked at the clock every few minutes and thought to myself "If I fall asleep in the next 5 minutes, I'll get exactly THIS much sleep." Can I get a witness on that one? Thank you. So as I'm trying to will myself into rebelled-slumber, my next project starts to unfold in my head. Sigh...really? Right now? Muse, you couldn't have come at a more opportune moment?

It was at this time that the social scientist in me started to analyze my mental process. Part of me was thoroughly intrigued by what my creative conscious was bringing forth and wanted it to continue and another part of me was just plain irritated. Luckily, even though I did not jump out of bed and write everything down, I remembered most, if not all of what I came up with. Yay! The Last Day is finally under way. Through some relaxation techniques, I was able to staunch the flow (it was a necessary sacrifice) and fall asleep...eventually.

This incident of inspiration coming at the most inopportune moment brings me back to one of my favorite lectures on the creative genius by Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love. During the lecture, she talks about how inspiration can show up at random and inconvenient times and how an artist can deal with it. She gives an example of a musician driving a car on the freeway and all of sudden he hears the slightest bit of a song that he wants to write. The musician starts to become anxious because he really wants that song, but he stopped himself, looked up in the sky (the direction of his particular muse) and told the unwritten song to either come back at another time if it really wanted to exist, or to go bother someone else.

Last night I like to think that I tried a similar method. I couldn't let myself get wrapped up in my story then. I even asked the story (in my head...I think) to come back at another time if it truly wants to exist. Hopefully, as I find more time to work on this project, I will be able to restart the creative juices. If not, the story will turn out completely different than my muse had originally intended (that'll teach it!). 

So this is my rant. I hope that you find it insightful, or if anything amusing.

Elizabeth Gilbert's talk can be streamed at the bottom left corner of my blog, or by clicking HERE. 

Thank you for indulging me.

GMG, sleeper (sorta)

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