I had an interesting discussion tonight with a fellow writer who had also run up against the ole brick wall. Odd that we haven't spoken with each other in a week or so. You see, while he has his own tales to tell, in his own writing style,
he said that he appeared to be forcing the tale.
Now, it must be said that he also invests much brain work into each thing that he puts out.
He actually mentioned the word "emit" when he described it.
Ya know, like a fart.
After I laughed and he did after he smelled what he'd expelled, our communal discourse began to cover grounds that we had not before yet discovered.
Hell, it ranged from the idea of the muse, the subject of the subconscious and its function in our sleep: Dream State (and also lucid dreaming and how when one discovers that they are dreaming, that is when they awaken) and sleep paralysis and its own function in our brain's information processing,
and then on to particle theory and the recent discovery of a particle form another dimension from the Large Hadron Collider (yeah, old joke about misspelling that; we are juvenile in our enjoyment of writing)
And we came up with a final distillation, which I will share with you now, for what it's worth.
The reason that tales might sometimes be unsatisfactory
could be due to this consideration:
Consider your reader.
That might be it.
What does this mean?
Does it mean that we have to write toward a certain policy point? Are we searching for a large audience? Are we looking toward selling a million books? Are we in this to make large cash?
I will leave it up to you for your decision about that for yourself. You go and write however you will, for whatever your reason, and if you find that sort of thing to be your muse, then do what you will.
We did not worry about that in our discussion about the almighty muse (although we spoke at length about formulaic writing: such as romances with dirty parts in it, much as our grandmothers would subscribe to those little monthly books that spoke of
married doctors/ airplane pilots/ wealthy philanthropists
and the nurses/ airplane attendants/ Peace Corps volunteers who loved them)
we spoke of the Muse.
Why do we write?
Well, it appears that our best friend, our Reader, our BFF
We decided that we must not pander to the prurient interests of the Reader for that sake alone.
Prurient is excellent, but it shouldn't be an ends to a mean.
We have to do two things, no matter if we write a comedy or a romance or a tragedy.
We have to give you closure, which is that point after the arc when you finally get to let your breath out and say, "Ahhhhhh."
Then your shoulders go down, you shake off the shivers, the tears, or the smile after it's all been settled.
And the second thing is:
We have to give you hope.
If you have followed this diatribe this far, then you know what such a thing means to us; we, as a collective.
We speak now not of formulae. Fuck hacks.
We speak of being true our human intent.
We survive as a species simply because we wish to connect to each other, to communicate our experience with each other,
in the hope we have (innate in our DNA)
that we can survive bad things, rise above the horror that others might do, and help each other find the way out of the darkness.
However this happens, no matter what we each may have done,
we must believe that there is a reason to hope.