When I get a good idea from the Muse I like to say it out loud. It feels like it becomes real when it has been spoken. Spiritual texts back me up on this. Something comes into existence by being spoken. In the beginning there was the word, and it was good. Or as the Babylonian creation myth said (even as I am writing this I am thinking – is this over the top? What the heck, we are writers! ):
When on high the heaven had not been named,
Firm ground below had not been called by name,
When primordial Apsu, their begetter,
And Mummu-Tiamat, she who bore them all,
Their waters mingled as a single body,
No reed hut had sprung forth, no marshland had appeared,
None of the gods had been brought into being,
And none bore a name, and no destinies determined–
The thing is, I also find that if I talk about the idea in detail, I feel like I lose the energy to get it on paper. When the idea comes to me, mystically, there is a certain internal discomfort until it has been made visible. Captured and preserved. This is writer’s gold. It drives me to sit in front of the computer or grab a pad of paper and get it down. Anything to take it out of my head and make it visible because it feels very valuable and I fear loosing it in my memory.
What I have learned is that saying it out loud in detail feels better but I think it is a false relief. It is like I imagine it is scribed in the brain of the listener for future reference, or they will carry the ball for me until I need it. In reality they probably have less drive to remember it than I do. I think it is a disrespect for the muse, and maybe laziness.
It was my Muse, only I can do it justice. I think the Muse chose me because the idea is best filtered through my senses to become visible. Someone else will do it differently. Ultimately, saying your idea outloud is a false sense of comfort and maybe a bout of insecurity. To write you have to believe that you are the best person to share the story, that the way you interpret the world is interesting and meaningful.
So, here is how I have figured out my relationship to the Muse. She gives me a gift and I am meant to receive it and do my best to give it my authentic expression. She chose me and who am I to question her judgement. I need to give the idea a name so it will come into existence, and I can share that name with friends. To me friends are people who want me to be all I can be and will check in to make sure I am not neglecting myself. And then I have to bottle that energy and let the discomfort drive me to get the idea on the page.
I’d be curious to know what other people’s relationship is with their writing muse. Do you have a ritual?