When your muse rebels

I don’t know about other writers, but my muse is evil. I know, I know. That’s not news. I’ve written about Myrtle the Evil Muse several times both here and at Mad Genius Club. Sometimes, it’s been tongue-in-cheek but, more often than not, it is dead serious. Myrtle, you see, has her own ideas on what I should write and when I should write it. She doesn’t care what my publishing schedule is. She is the muse that suffers from “popcorn kittens” or the infamous “oooh, shiny” affliction.

So color me skeptical, worried and waiting for the other shoe to drop right now. Sure, Myrtle had her way with Christmas Magic. I hadn’t planned on writing that particular story and certainly not right now. Once I got started, however, I knew there wouldn’t be any putting it away until later. Myrtle was dug in. She DEMANDED the story be done now. She was loud, proud and often vulgar when I tried to tell her I had other things that needed to be written.

I gave in. I always give in. Sometimes, I fight harder and longer but this time I recognize the signs. Myrtle was in her most evil incarnation and I’d get nothing else written if I didn’t sit my butt in the chair and write the story. Besides, I told myself, what harm could it do. I can whip out a short story in just a day or two.

Cue the maniacal laughter and evil plotting. You see, Myrtle had other plans. She wanted to hook me into the story and then she planned on turning it into a novel.

At least that’s what she seemed to tell me as I got further into it.

There were several days of pushing back and forth. Short story. Novel. Short story, novel. I’d compromise and write a novella, I told her. No, she wanted a novel.

I should have suspected she was up to something when she gave in and let me finish the story at approximately 15k words. Long for a short story but short for a novella. But, at least I think so, just long enough.

Now, one day after publication, I sit here at my keyboard and wonder what sort of game Myrtle is really playing. She never gives in that easily. I can feel her plotting in the back of my mind. There’s more than a hint of fear as I wait for the proverbial shoe to drop.

I have visions of…no, I can’t say it. If I say it, it might become real and I don’t dare risk it. I can’t–I won’t write those kinds of books. No, I won’t say what kind. I don’t want to give Myrtle any ideas.

Maybe the safest thing is for me to go hide under the bed. If I’m very, very quiet, Myrtle might think I’m sleeping and leave me alone.

In the meantime, if you haven’t checked out Christmas Magic I’d really appreciate it if you would. Now, shhh, be very, very quiet. I’m hiding from my muse.




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