Some people, when they learn I write fiction, say they’d love to do the same thing but they just don’t have a great imagination.
Until October 2008, I said the very same thing. I had been a non-fiction writer for more than 20 years; it felt comfortable and it paid the bills. Truthfully, I didn’t think I had a story in me so fiction held no allure.
When I started the first book almost exactly a year ago, I had NO CHOICE in the matter. I’m not going to get too woo-woo here but the inspiration and many times the words themselves came from somewhere outside of me. Pressed into service, I dutifully took dictation, sometime hours at a time.
Where the hell did THAT come from, I’d ask in disbelief. My characters would do and say the most extraordinary things, all of their own accord.
I’m not saying I don’t bring talent to the table. I just know I’m not writing alone and I’m more than okay with that. I don’t call my inspiration a muse. I believe I have a team of guides with me, especially for the writing. (Woo-woo Alert!) Sometimes, I welcome them with burning sage. I definitely say thank-you after a productive day of writing.
From time to time, I feel an intense pressure and burning sensation at the back of my head during fervent writing sessions – maybe just a friendly nudge from the team.
I’m fully connected to the characters in my books but I don’t try to force the story on them. Sometimes, they’ll say, “Mandy, I really wouldn’t say that. Try again.” I sigh and rewrite. When I get it right, I feel it in my gut.
The Artist’s Way says that creativity is an expression of the divine at work. I think it’s connectivity with our universe and all the creative energy we share, past and present.
Do you feel inspiration from outside yourself? How would you describe it?