Monday was a holiday here in the USA, so I enjoyed a three-day weekend. I actually accomplished a lot on my current WIP, but I also enjoyed lots of family time.
One of my non-writing activities involved relaxing on my best friend’s back deck, savoring clam dip and seven-grain crackers, and observing the antics of the many hummingbirds who grace her property. My friend has a hummingbird feeder suspended on her deck and it was a constant source of energetic activity, despite the fact we were seated close enough to reach out and touch it.
The dazzling little hummers darted back and forth between the feeder and a nearby cherry tree, perching among its leaves while they plotted their next foray to the syrupy fountain. I swear, the cherry leaves were larger than the tiny birds.
As I watched them flit and flutter, it occurred to me that the delightful afternoon on the deck was providing sustenance for my muse as surely as the sugar-water nourished the high energy birds. I needed writing time this weekend, but I also needed the trip to the farmer’s market, the family barbeque, the pool party with the grandchildren, and the time to unwind with friends in the stillness of a garden abundant with hummingbirds.
It’s too easy to lose sight of the need to feed my muse when I’m scurrying to write the day’s allotted words before rushing to the day-job. And too often when the weekend arrives, I’m obsessed with the paucity of words I’ve accumulated during the week—so driven to find uninterrupted time to create that I forget my muse needs bright, shiny experiences to act as fodder for her imaginative process.
Relax…breathe, Debbie. Take a walk; enjoy the children; absorb scenic beauty. Feed your muse, because a starving muse produces uninspired work, and what good is it to write volumes of narrative lacking the necessary spark to ignite a reader’s imagination?
Enjoy life! Keep your muse fat and healthy.