When Life Gets in the Way of the Flow

So, life keeps getting in the way, I'm happily editing along and I have to stop to run the kiddos to an activity. Oh, why oh why, I cry in my head. Things are flowing. It's all coming together and I have to stop for life. Ack. And sure enough I can't get out of the book the entire time I'm driving. It's not that I'm editing, plotting, or writing in my head, it's that I'm stuck in my character's heads. They won't let me be and truthfully I don't want them to let me be. I want them to stay with me as intense as they are.

Do you have days like that? The muse is with you, your characters are living and breathing over your shoulder, and you CAN'T work. Oh, the frustration just climbs as you run you errand, make chit chat with people (some of them are friends), but you aren't really there, your stuck in your book. You race home hoping that they haven't abandoned you and in this case they haven't and you can pick up right where you left off. Whew.

Unfortunately, this doesn't always happen. Just last month I had a day of flow, had to run out for an entire evening, but the time I could get back to them, they had packed up and left. Oh the frustration and agony. Used to be I'd take a long break or wait for the flow to come back, but since getting serious with my writing, nope, I sit my butt in the chair and write anyway, frantically hoping that they will return.

We all have lives outside of our stories. Kids, spouses, possibly jobs, a house that won't clean itself, errands that need to be run. And most of that stuff we do happily when the flow isn't there, but when it is what do you do? The idea of hiring babysitter, or a mommy's helper, crossed my mind as I was driving for keeping the kids entertained, fed, etc. But I've a busy schedule between the two kiddos and those things can't be easily shuffled when the muse decides to pay me a visit. So, what do you do to try to keep life from interfering with the flow?


  1. cry a lot. LOL :0) I completely go through this weekly. I swear. But, all I can do is sit down the next chance I get and hope to God I remember what the heck I was thinking about. :0)

  2. "inner world" verse the "outer world", yes, I know this one. I suppose a babysitter, nanny etc would be helpful. But, alas, you'd have to consult with your husband and budget a person to take care of the kids while you mingle with the people inside your psyche.
    And besides, don't you want to be there raising your kids? You might emerge one day from your mind and find them grown up and gone....what would the third way be?? Why not enroll them in school so you have less time together?? It seems to be you set yourself up for the most difficult scenario possible, homeschool wishing they'd go away???

  3. Ah, but the muse is a fickle creature, she doesn't show up between 9 and 3 Monday thru Friday just because it would be convenient to me.

  4. As you so accurately describe, the muse is on it's own schedule. It might make an interesting study to see if writers and other artists have come up with some methods to invite it in. The poetry muse was with me this morning. Between laundry and dishes, I jotted down it's story.

  5. I think you can invite the muse in by working diligently and she will more often than not visit during those periods, but sometimes she choices to visit at the most inconvenient time.


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