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FOLLOW YOUR MUSE

November 16, 2011

            Okay, so this isn’t exactly a new subject here at the Worlds Of Fred Rayworth, but it’s one I’d like to address again. Early Saturday morning, I was at the dawg park chatting with my friend, Ed. Somehow we got to talking about writing. He’s known for the several years that I’ve been hanging with him that I’m a writer. He broached the subject that he was toying with the idea of giving it a try. However, he has another friend that had been agonizing over where to place a comma within a sentence for days, maybe even weeks. Ed wondered if he could handle writing if it was that much trouble.

            Alarm bells went off in my head as soon as those words came out of his mouth. What have I mentioned, probably more than once in several of my blogs? Before I get back to that I need to bring up another friend, David. He used to be a member of our writers group. He no longer lives in Las Vegas but we’ve kept in touch over the years. He tried to write an autobiography but gave up in frustration. Not long ago, he decided to try writing a fictional story. However, he struggled so much with it during the editing, he wondered if it was worth it. After a few e-mails back and forth, I finally asked him why he was writing it in the first place. He came to the conclusion that he was doing it for the wrong reasons. Instead of writing for pleasure, he realized the writing was more like torture. I told him that was not the reason to do it. The last I heard from him, he decided to quit writing and pursue other interests.

            In the case of Ed, I know he can write, technically at least, whether good or bad because of the type of work he has done. I’m pretty sure he can put sentences together, keeping in mind that I’ve never seen any of his writing. I told him that if he wants to write, he needs to forget about all that bull, all the mechanics, all the right and wrong. Yeah, my friends, all the stuff I talk to you about in this blog. “Just write. Follow your muse.”

            His eyes opened up when I said that.

            “Ed, you will eventually have to learn all of this stuff as you become a more experienced writer, but when you’ve start out, just write. Follow your muse. Get it down first, then worry about cleaning it up later.”

            I went on to explain that if he were to get hung up on details right off, he’d never get anywhere.

            Sound familiar? I’m putting my money where my mouth is. I’m practicing what I’m preaching, folks.

            I explained that he’d never get his ideas down and he’d never get anything completed. Finish an idea first then go back and fix the flaws. The more he writes, the more he’ll learn, the better he’ll get at catching those things. The more sense this very advice I give here on my blog will make.

            I went on to explain how I started with almost no rules at all and how I completed The Cave in just a few months. I had a full-length novel completed and under my belt. Of course, it was nowhere near good enough to get published, but it got my juices flowing, it honed my chops, it sparked my creativity. I also told him how much editing goes into a manuscript, such as The Greenhouse which is currently on edit #29, by the way.

            I recommended he show up to one of our writer’s group meetings. I don’t know if he will or not, but he kept repeating “Follow my muse” over and over again. He thanked my profusely. I left him feeling like I might have accomplished something. Time will tell.

            To cop a tired cliché (but I don’t really care since this is my blog), “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!” Follow your muse!

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