Journal Prompt: Hire a Muse

I've started writing my way to my 2007 goal of keeping a hand written journal since January 1st. Every day I've tried to write a little something and so far it's been pretty easy. I'm trying to steer away from the whole writing about my day gig but that's not always happened. For three days, however, I focused my entries around this little exercise. And now, I invite you all to do it as well. Get out your journal and your pen... it's time to hire a muse.

On the first day, you'll be writing a muse wanted ad. This advertisement lists everything and all the qualities you look for in a muse. This person, will be your artistic muse whenever you write in this journal. Describe what this muse looks like, in detail. How do you want your muse to write? Is their handwriting long, flowing cursive or block print? Do you mind if they doodle a little bit or a lot over your pages? Where should this muse show up; this one is important if you think you'll be on the move... you'll want your muse to travel with you into coffee houses and on airplane trips. When do you want the muse to work; do you have a set work hours when they'll need to show up? Write as much of this down in the want ad. You can finish by including where the muse is to apply (within? via crayon? you can get creative here).

On day two, you'll become your muse. Answer the want ad as if it were the perfect job for you (for some of us, this IS the perfect job for us). Go into details about how you match the qualifications for the position and what you'll be doing to win this job of muse. Allow your passion to show here. If you do not like writing, maybe write about why you're going for this position... what do you hope to learn from accepting it or why is this a worthy goal for you to take on? Sign and date the letter as if you were going to mail it out to the hiring manager.

On day three, you'll be interviewing for the position. Turn to a clean sheet and let's have some fun. You'll be writing the interview between yourself and the hiring manager for the position. Get really creative, you can either write this exchange out as a dialog format or write it as a scene from your favorite movie or t.v. show and include each sides inner thoughts and feelings. Describe the way you feel sitting in the waiting room, awaiting the interviewer to appear. Describe what you decided to wear that day. Did you wear your lucky fingerless gloves? The boots that never fail to help you get a job? Describe it all. What about the portfolio you brought to show people, you did bring one right? When you're done writing the interview, write how the hiring manager responds to you. Did they hire you on the spot or did you arrange for a contract with terms to start at a later date? Write the date down as well and make a promise that if you do decide to write in your journal for longer than these three days, that you will continue through the contract.

I hope you liked this little exercise. I was surprised while doing this as it really forced me to think about what I was looking for in a muse to help spur me to write. In the end, of course... you are your best journaling muse; by describing them, you gain a bit of insight as to what muse-like qualities you have within yourself and where you think your muse wants to go in your writing.

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Green Salad Days...

Following your suggestion, I started to keep a daily journal. My totems look on as I write line after line of bodice ripping yarns. (Note to self: Start the diet NOW). It amuses me at the time but will I really want to read it back at the end of a year? Probably not. What I require is a muse who will provides a stream of consciousness, not a rivulet of disjointed dreams and half remembered salad days... It was nice to frolic in warm spring meadows, wearing nothing except a traffic cone to keep one's head dry... No RAG week is long over for this chap. Hmmm I have an idea of how to get the position of muse. Now where have I hidden those Polaroids. :D

Puzzled by the comment


Not sure how to approach your comment. But I will say that it takes a lot of words and strings of words to cut through the daily head-chatter and into the heart of the matter. I know that when i write, i try to be more reflective of what's going on inside me... and what's important to me. While I know that cutting through the daily "what i did today" qualifies as a post, I want to understand myself deeper; and to write... things that are more interesting. Things I'd want people to read and get out of.

Maybe, what could help inspire you would be to see if you can get a copy of the Memoirs of the Soul... or check out an actual published journal. (Like Kurt Cobain's Journals or Simple Days: A Journal on What Really Matters by Marlene A. Schiwy. I just bought that Simple Days book and it really IS a journal of the author's entries about simplifying life down to what matters).

In any case, I'm tickled to see you writing in a book daily and I do hope you're able to keep up with it for the year. I'm right there with ya.


Blame it on Shakespeare...

Thank you for the links inno. Actually I think your post is very good. I now know where I am going wrong. I am trying to write about my life instead of living it. The missing ingredient is a muse that will inspire my soul to sing again. As your article quite rightly points out that muse is me, I just need to write out a better job description. So roll over Beethoven and tell Tchaikovsky the news. :D

muse ad

I have done the first part in my journal and it was heaps of fun
Thanks for the great tips!

Muse for Hire?

Very nicely done. Do keep up with these entries on writing and journaling, I quite enjoy them. As I read it I was reminded how I did not interview for a Muse, rather she found me and I had little choice in the matter. When she touches me, I write rather well. In 2004 I set a goal to write every day. It was hellacious at times but I did it. Now, I rarely miss a day and if I do it's because the Gods conspired against me, so be it. I keep a personal journal, paper form, and a blog. Both get posted to daily. The journal is of course of a more personal nature and the blog is for public consumption.