People have asked me how I can find something to write about every day.
Sometimes, I wonder that myself.
And that got me thinking.
Where does inspiration come from?
For me, it’s not the margaritas, the impressive genealogy (including farmers, a postal worker and a high school teacher) or the kissy-lipped face of concentration I’ve been known to adopt while writing.
No, my ideas start outside of myself, spurred by muses. And while “spurred by muses” sounds like something that could be taken care of with some sort of burning soap and a tiny-toothed comb, I’m glad I have them.
The thing that has surprised me most about discovering the concept of the muse is that anyone can be one.
Take T for instance.
T says things that make me think, make me look deeper. The following exchange has stayed with me for years:
Me: I just can’t believe Scott screwed me over like that! After I’ve gone above and beyond for him!
T: You know what the problem with the world is? There aren’t enough people doing stuff for Scott.
That comment inspired a story and helped me drop the attitude I had been working on.
And there are other muses! Take, for example, my friend Diana, who once suggested that I could pass for Canadian.
For some reason, that tickles me.
You can't buy stuff like that.
I think everyone has muses, but I’m not sure everyone sees them. It would be best, of course, if muses were easily identified, if they were required to, say, wear those shoes with the little bells on the toes, or present printed cards, little gold-embossed cards calling them out as licensed and bonded inspirers of creativity.
But maybe we just need to open our eyes to the fact that sometimes muses aren’t readily identifiable.
Sometimes, they look just like the people next to us.