Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Writing comes to me in waves. Against the backdrop of constant chattering inside my head, there are better days and there are worse days. There are days when the writing just flows, running from little streams into rivers into seas into the big wide ocean. Ideas come from everywhere, stories wait to be told, words magically weave themselves into beautiful prose. There are days when the writing is trapped, an invisible entity caught in an invisible world. Words trip over themselves, sentences stumble, paragraphs don’t make sense. The mind echoes with emptiness and the world looks bland. Neither pretty flowers nor blue skies inspire.

Lately, I have noticed a subtle change in my writing. More accurately, I feel something different when I write. There is no longer the heaviness. There is a clarity that wasn’t there before. There is coherence where it was once wanting. It’s hard to describe but I think I might have hit something of a “Eureka!” moment in my writing.

I had always assumed that these moments were unruly, unpredictable, uncontrollable. Most of the time, I only recognized that I have these moments when I don’t have one of these moments. And in the last few months, I have had little reason to shout “Eureka!” at all. In fact, this most recent dearth of inspiration had me worried. I thought the time had come for me to admit that I just don’t have what it takes to be a writer, that I have been caught out, that I am a fraud.

Until I made this remarkable discovery: my creative output is in direct proportion to my creative input. The more I read, the more I could write. The more I fed myself ideas, the more the stories came. That my gift with words can be reduced to simple math and supply chain management is sobering. That inspiration need not be random is liberating.

I visited the Dream King again, and he left me clues that led me to my muse.

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