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About the Muse
The Fuzzy Pink Muse
by Lina Rehal
Like most writers, the muse comes to me in mysterious ways. Sometimes, she stands on my shoulder and screams in my ear until I give her my undivided attention and let her words guide my fingers across the keyboard. A story or poem is born.
Then there are the times she seems to hover over me like a fuzzy pink cloud. I might be occupied with events that are going on in my life or just tired from a difficult day. My mind is blocked. There is no communication between us. I have to ride it out and wait until she finally gets through to me.
I get a lot of ideas while driving to work. It surprises me that I seem to have a morning muse, but I’ve learned not to ponder the why and when and to just be thankful that I get any ideas at all. My creative thoughts and listening to Elvis on Sirius Radio make my commute bearable. Unfortunately, by the time I get home and try to put my words to paper, I have forgotten most of it and struggle to recapture the moment. Maybe I need to attach a steering wheel to my keyboard. In my early writing days, I learned that you should write about what you know. I was a housewife with two small children. I wrote about my daughter’s first day at nursery school, a family of squirrels, a lazy beaver, a parakeet and a cat named Jezebel. I wrote poems about bumble bees, a grouch and the circus. I rented a typewriter for $8 a month and hammered away at the keys at night while my children slept. The muse didn’t have a lot of material to draw on back then, but she tried. Thirty years and many rejections later, I was paid ten dollars by a children’s online magazine for my poem, “A Grouch Is.” As we grow older and experience life, we gather and store information. The people we meet, the places we visit and the lessons we learn become part of our knowledge bank. The muse grows too. Writers never know when it will draw on that information and present it to us for use in a story, poem, or even a book. The muse lies dormant until something strikes her and she’s all over you, reminding you, guiding your hand. You can’t seem to type it or write it down as fast as she can spit it out. My muse has more material to sift through now. Maybe that muddles my mind. But, when that light of inspiration comes on, it sparks a connection. Everything becomes crystal clear. Writers live for the moments when that fuzzy pink cloud dissolves and the clarity of the story comes to life.