18 May Navigating a Creative Deluge
Ideas popping up like crocuses in springtime. Characters scrambling like children at an Easter Egg Hunt. And settings? Every rustic café, weather-worn bench, glistening cityscape, and faraway mountain range is an open door to a world to be explored.
The tricky part is when you have committed to one path, then you glance aside … and another beckons like the yellow brick road. Do you stay the course? Or jump to the next possibility? Will you be able to find the original path again?
Lest you believe I made this up, I faced this exact dilemma last week. I was waist deep in the rushing river known as the sequel to Messenger. Loving the adventure. Revelling in the adrenalin! I wanted to return to my characters, so they could guide me safely to land.
Yet, when I sat at my writing desk, I felt another tale demanding to be told. No, no, I thought. I am committed. I hear the roaring waters of the Great Lands. You’ll have to wait until I am done fording this river.
But creativity does not work that way. At least, not for me.
My beautiful novel could feel the impulse of this new tale. The urgency to write these fables right now. And so, the sequel graciously stepped aside — propping me up on a floating raft — opening the space for me to write two short stories.
The true mystery is whether those tales were working in tandem with my novel. Creating a gateway of wisdom or a lesson in vulnerability. Stories carry powerful alchemy … in the writing and in the reading. Every tale transforms me as an author. Making the next tale more potent
The longer I write, the more I recognize the Muse is in charge. The story that appears is the story to tell that day. No matter the rationale. Or the deadline.
Every day is a new river. Every story a new boat.