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Friday, June 17, 2016

Seduced By The Muse

So far, my life's creative output has fallen short of my expectations. For too long, I suspect I allowed myself to be seduced by some romantic idea of artistic inspiration, waiting for a muse (or something) to visit me. As I waited for inspiration, valuable time was lost. Sound at all familiar to anyone?   

In an article I read many years ago, the late John Updike said he completed at least one page every day, meaning at the end of each year he had over 300 pages written - a book. So does that kind of discipline trump the notion of a muse? Some would argue (I don't agree) that Updike's writing is cold or cerebral. Did the same discipline that helped him produce such a staggering output also make his output clinical?

Since starting to blog over five years ago, I've often thought of Updike's approach, attempting to write every day. It's been humbling; my current batting average is about .667 and most of my posts are smaller than a page. But even without Updike's talent & and only 2/3 of his discipline, I am feeling better about my creative output. More significantly, I'm no longer as seduced by the muse.

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