It can happen anywhere. At any time.
I could be reading and here the whisper of other voices in our head.
I could be sitting in the atrium of a cinema multiplex and reading upcoming movie titles. One word will stick in my mind, making me wonder what that word means to me.
I could be driving and almost be blinded by the flash of sheer brilliance.
I could even be writing and be shocked to have my words trigger a completely different idea.
It happens. In fact, all of the above have happened to me before.
Inspiration does not work according to my schedule. It just comes and goes as it pleases. That's why I tend to refer to my creativity as a muse, because in my life, it seems to be an entity of its own. Close to me, but never quite under my control.
Sort of like a pet tiger, really.
I love that feeling of inspiration. That sudden rush of pure creation can't be rivaled by any feeling in the world. It's addictive. I write to bring more inspiration. The more I write, the more inspiration comes.
But sometimes, the muse just ups and goes on holiday. My inspiration dries up and with it, my words.
I used to worry about it considerably (ask any of my older bloggy friends). After all. What writer in the middle of a writer's block does not do anything in their power to get out of it?
A lot of people have told me to just keep writing. That whatever I do, I must not stop writing. I gave that I try, but found that it just mires me deeper in the despair of staying stuck in the block. The added panic and pressure really do not help me to get my inspiration back.
So I thought for a long time about my dilemma. Eventually I came to a realization. Not once did inspiration hit me because I told it to. It came when I least expected it. Reading, watching a movie, talking with friends.
Not sitting in front of a blank page and pulling clumps of hair out of my head.
I realize that my mind needs to sort my thoughts into some semblance of order before it can give me some well structured ideas. And to do that, it doesn't let me write anything for that time. When I write, I just add more chaos to my thoughts. So, my muse just doesn't let that happen.
So what do I do now?
I wait. I do other things. Get out there. Find things that might be the final thought that straightens my spaghetti thoughts into something approaching a train of thought. It might take long, yes. But I have found that the more I leave my muse alone, the more she can think up some brilliant flashes of inspiration.
What do you do to get/stay inspired?