Can’t. Write. Panic. Attack. Plus a Research Question.

Not quite an attack, but almost.

It’s scary – feeling like I can’t write. I think it may be the kind of fear that wakes me up from nightmares. It’s a taunting fear, too – it’s like the music buildup in horror films, the kind that goes into a crescendo just to calm again around the next corner, then climb again suddenly when the monster jumps out of the shadows.

It’s a vacant feeling, too. Like something disappeared. My rational, logical mind knows that nothing disappeared, that it’s still there somewhere and that today, for some reason, I just couldn’t reach it.

Instead of writing, I tried researching. And I got very upset about that too, since I couldn’t find the price of paper in the seventeenth century. I’m not sure it matters, not really, especially as I found some cool stuff that might be very useful and that gave me ideas, but still – the thought that there will be something glaringly anachronistic in what I’m writing bothered me so much that I had to take a walk, reading The City & The City by China Mieville, just to take my mind off it.

So here’s the question – I don’t know how many of you write fantasy of any sort, but if you do… How much license do you give yourself? How much creative freedoms do you think you can take with a story that’s clearly based in a different world?

Imaginary Muse

What to do when my muse has fled?
Why, I could sit here on my bed
And I could then begin to dread
That she has forever left my head.

My muse is a fickle thing,
She doesn’t call, she doesn’t ring.
On a whim she’ll come and bring
Me an idea of car or king.

But then she leaves and I’m bereft,
My hands- with keyboard deft,
Almost willing to commit literary theft,
For without my muse, what have I left?

But then again, there is no muse,
It’s all a sham, it’s all a ruse,
‘O Mind, you’re cruel!’ I accuse,
‘To give me an idea, you refuse!’

And so it goes once in a while,
And thus these poems, so infantile,
Are born of frustration and denial
With a brain, just now infertile!