Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Tonight at Midnight...

I used to write for just me; for the pleasure of it. The raw, visceral creation high from coaxing worlds out of a blank page was all that kept me at my keyboard. Insomnia out of control, in the darkest hours of night, it was just me and my inner world. Pounding on the keys until my fingernails split or I ran out of coffee, I often got to the point where the screen and the room would dissolve and I was just there...in the moment, seeing the action and feeling the emotion of the characters.

Then I decided it might be fun to share my stories…

I got lost on the spinning hamster-wheel of approval seeking and format obeying and grammar fixing. I lost the joy of it somewhere in there. I started to look for formulas and structures instead of relying on my gut. I got shanghaied by structure and style elements specific to genre. Submission guidelines, hook lines, word counts…all sleep darts stabbing at the creative spirit that used to whirl with abandon in my head.

I’ve decided to go back to that first love, my Midnight Muse, and fervently hope he’ll bring me back to the gleeful, ‘what if’ scenarios and wild action sequences that sent me into breathless giggles at the craziness of the ideas. Will he let me follow him to those dark moments before a rash and violent decision or feel the exquisite angst of lost love? I hope so.

I hope he forgives my indiscretion with the despicable elements of writing – the predictable, the formulaic, and yes…the cliché. If he does take me back, I promise to weave the world he desires. Whatever the outcome, I will obey his demands for extravagant villains, unsupportable evidence, and wild leaps of imagination. He is a brooding, conniving, exhausting creature – my muse…I cannot wait to see him again.


Photograph by Barbara L. Hanson