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A Letter From My Muse

A few days ago I received a letter in my mental in box. This is what it said:

Dear AJ,

Have you lost your mind? Seriously. Have you lost your ever-loving mind?

Almost seven weeks ago, we were cruising along writing stories, having a good time. Things couldn't have gotten much better. Well, you could have gotten a couple more acceptances but other than that, we were doing all right-you and I.

Then you receive this rejection and it was kind of harsh. I've never seen you take a rejection so. . . so much to heart. It's as if it made you actually stop and think. Think. That's not your job-it's mine.

So, what did you do? What did you do, man? You kicked me to the curb. ME! What did I ever do but help you create some of the best stories you have ever written? I mean, remember The Woodshed? We sweated and bled and cursed as we wrote that one. Yeah, I know I had a few beers but I work better when I'm a little off kilter. What about Chapiesky? Remember that story? You heard the name but I came up with the story. ME! And how about Sarah's Playground? Yeah, you didn't want to write that little piece of semi-erotic horror now did you? Aren't you glad you listened to me now?

Those were good times, AJ. Good times, I say.

Then you threw it all away and for what? For more technical and fundamental writing? You wanted to try 'following the rules.' You have never been a rule follower, why start now? Come on, AJ-when was the last time you listened to even the simplest of rules?

So, tell me, where did it get you? Hmm?

Oh, that's right. You wrote five stories in almost seven weeks? Really? I'm so proud of you, and if you don't recognize that-it's sarcasm.

Five stories? We used to write that many in a week-you and I. Do you remember those days? The days when we sat at the computer taking turns tap-tapping away on the keyboard, discussing characters and settings and emotions and plots and all the other good writerly types of stuff.

AJ, we were meant to be together. Dump your new partner and come back to me. I'll make you happy. I'll show you the fun in writing that we used to have-I'm certain all you have done is work at it since you left me at the computer.

Please, come to your senses.


Your Muse.

Well, my muse was right about a few things. We sure did have a good time together. The stories we created-I can truly say she was my darker side. So, after nearly seven weeks of being away from her, I wrote her back.

Dear Muse,

Can you forgive me for my stupidity? I have missed you and the way we connected. You are so much more fun than my other muse-she is a real witch, always making me work while I am writing. I don't function that way. I hate the new style she is imposing on me. It's not working out.

Any way, I have a lot of groveling to do. If you will take me back I will be loyal from hear on out. I promise.



Yeah, I know mine was short, but really I am the typical male and my muse knows this. She can call me on any lie and make me feel like crap for even trying.

Just for the record, she and I have gotten back together and have penned two stories in less than a day. It feels good to be back in the saddle and writing with a familiar partner. Sadly, she has obtained a whip since we were last together-and she likes to use it.


Over the last few weeks I did try and experiment with following the rules of writing. I will say that I have never wasted so much time in my life. It was horrible. My creativity left me, the words fled, the thoughts vanished and I stared at a blank screen for hours. It was my first significant bout with Writer's Block.

After starting on a story recently and getting stuck on it, I said screw it and rewrote the piece using my old style, old voice and just let the story live. Talk about the feeling of freedom.

Be wary — AJ is backů

AJ Brown
The Odd Ramblings of AJ Brown