Finding Your Muse

The nine muses of Greek mythology (courtesy of Greek Myths and Mythology)

Inspiration often comes in the most unlikely and inconvenient places.

For example, I may be sitting in front of my computer all ready to write a "change the world" blog post. I strain my brain. I close my eyes. I try to create. Unfortunately, I end up watching Youtube videos, responding to an oh so witty tweet, or comment ad nauseum on my friends' Facebook updates.

On the other hand, a flash of brilliance may strike as I'm pounding the asphalt on one of my runs. I feel clever, energised and on-top-of-the-world, and tell myself that I must write it down the moment I've reached home.

And then, I forget all about it.

How can one eliminate those writer blocks? How can we drink freely from the flowing rivers of textual epiphany?

Before you bang your head against keyboard, take a break.

Go for a walk, observe flora/fauna and people, and stretch your hands and legs.

Bring along a small notebook so that you can jot down thoughts as they come. A smartphone with recording or a note taking function may work equally well.

If your genie of ingenuity is still evasive, read an inspiring book or watch a favourite movie. Music may also help.

Should you need an added "boost", stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol or nicotine may help trigger those flashes of brilliance. A glass of ABC (Apple, Beetroot and Carrot) juice may also do the trick.

Having allowed your mind (and heart) to wander a bit, you should get back to your desk. After all, genius is one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.

If at first you can't write sh*t, try try again.

Sooner or later, your word smithing muse will visit you again. Don't agonise too much. Just move your fingers over your keyboard, engage wholly in the moment, and let it rip.

Of course, you can try everything under the Sun and still be unable to produce anything noteworthy. Perhaps what you write may even *gasp* sound illogical, insipid or dull.

However, don't kill yourself over it. Leave your judgmental, critical self far away when you attempt to put digital ink to screen.

Just shut all those voices up, focus, and write.

Over time as you practise writing frequently and often - even when you feel least like doing it - the repetitive exercise will strengthen your writing muscles. Your prose will be more smooth flowing. Your thoughts will be more coherent.

Heck, you may even be good enough to summon your muse at will!

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