Now the title is something I find very funny for two reason. One I hate the way people talk about having a muse to write, you either write or you don’t there’s no waiting for it to happen (I’m an optimist at the best of times but writing is work, you have to show up for work!) and two the muse does not exist.

Did you read that?

It does NOT exist.

It really doesn’t.

Writing is something you sit down and do regardless of if the muse is there or not. Sure I’ve used the excuse a lot, I’m even almost using it now, but I’m proving to myself that I’m not quite as museless as I keep telling myself. I’ve been back in Melbourne for about five days now and so far I have managed to write a total of like 50 words in my novel because I can’t bring myself to write. I just can’t seem to find the write, so I endeavoured to keep moving on with B-School stuff. I’ve finished the Website module and I’m up to the Communication module and in doing so I had something happen, I’m not sure of how to actually explain it but the first sparks of inspiration are coming back to me. I’ve started carrying around my tablet with me with my current chapter on Evernote so I can access it whenever I’m not at the computer (plus I always tend to get my best ideas on public transport) and something amazing happened yesterday when I was coming back from my cousin’s house. I actually managed to get some writing out. Granted it was small, but it helped. I also woke up feeling inspired the day before, which helped.

And with all of this, I learned something huge. Sometimes it’s better to wait it out. Don’t force it, don’t push it too hard. After losing my Dad I know that I’ve got a long way to go before I get back to where I was but I’m letting the process happen naturally. I’m getting frustrated at myself, because I don’t know what to do without my writing and it’s frustrating to have not made a bigger dent on what I wanted to do. On what I really needed to do. I have deadlines I need to meet. I have books to write (yes you read plural there, 2 non-fic and one fic) and I need to get off my butt and do it already, but slowly. My self care is more important and I realised that I slipped a lot because I currently have this sinus thing that just popped up. It’s frustrating as anything!

So while I don’t believe in the muse, I’m asking you out there, if you believe in the muse? Do you use it as an excuse or is it an actual empowerment? I want to know. I don’t judge and many people get very, very defensive when I tell them muses don’t exist, so enlighten me, hmm?

Mandi is a writer, reader, dreamer and is breaking procrastinating inner editors, one at a time.


  • annabelwriter

    Hello! Nice post.

    Firstly, I’m sorry to hear about your loss. How difficult that must have been, and must continue to be.

    On your question – I do, in a way, believe in the ‘muse’, in the sense that it is really just a different way of referring to that inspiration that you’ve mentioned. Also, I do believe, at times, in forcing yourself to write – I really have to do this myself, or I’d never get anything done. And sometimes, I find that forcing myself brings the ‘muse’ – or the inspiration, rather – back to me.

    Having said that, self-care is more important than anything, and I believe we instinctively know when it is right to force yourself to get on with it, and when it is right to just’be’.

    Good luck with it all, and enjoy your writing! 🙂

    • Mandi

      Hi Annabel! Thank you for your kind words <3 That's a really interesting way of putting that, I always just saw it as an excuse I guess. (Well I didn't always look at it that way, but over time I've realised!) Hopefully I'll see you commenting around the place a little. x

  • toconnell88

    I believe certain things can as triggers and inspire you, but I don’t think a ‘muse’ is a prerequisite to write. Muses romanticise; I prefer your pragmatic approach.

    Think it’s really mature of you to give yourself the necessary time for leaping back into the writing fray. Definitely wouldn’t be a good idea to force it. You’ll get there. Then you’ll be back to writing circles around us with your monolithic word counts!

      • Mandi

        Hahaha I just laughed a little too loud at this. Your perfectionism shining through again 😛 I like that you said that muses romanticise! That’s exactly why I think they’re annoying. People come up with the excuse that they have no muse to finish something on time. It’s frustrating. It’s also frustrating that I can’t just bam right back into it and pump out words. Bah! xx

  • Katherine Mackenzie-Smith

    This is so true, Mandi! I’m the queen of procrastination when it comes to writing and I always make it out to be a bigger deal than it really is. When I actually get started, I finally realise that it’s not that hard, it’s the STARTING part that is the key. You can sit and write rubbish for 30 minutes, but eventually good stuff will start coming out!

    • Amanda

      Starting is the hardest part. I never actually realised this until I got stuck, but once you do start it’s the best.

  • Tom O'Connell

    Test. Opps! Wasn’t ‘The Crow’. It was this one. Maybe it has something to do with these being imported from your blog’s previous incarnation?

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