Animus ab Inspirarum

August 5, 2009
Inspiration isn't easy. Inspiration has never been easy. And yes, the term "easy" is relative in this case, but also there is a general consensus that the previous statements are universally true among writers, among us writers.
It seems as though I find it increasingly difficult to refer to myself as a "writer," even though I write and that by definition makes me a writer; the definition makes a writer, but it does not make a Writer. And to be a Writer, one needs to be inspired.
More and more, I find inspiration in my everyday life: a blank sheet of paper, an errant thought in class. And yet... it does not seem enough. I see my thoughts running like dogs after squirrels, trying to catch a coherent and relevant idea. I put leashes on them and show them the plastic squirrel toy I have bought them; they are uninterested, as I expected but dreaded.
My thoughts are wild, untamed; they don't even answer to me and I am the one who creates them. No -- I am the one who adopts them. Inspiration is difficult, yes, but original inspiration even more so.
I am creatively caged like the imagined, titular pianists in the eleventh movement of Camille de Saint-Saens's "Carnival of the Animals." I am constrained by tradition, bound by exigency, deadlocked in a struggle with originality. The parameters of my own imagination are flexing, oscillating, even as I, undoubtedly, unconsciously restrain myself. (No, no, that's too out there, that's too wild, no one will ever understand, I'll do it later, after things have settled down, a house in Tampa...)
Inspiration is never easy, forced inspiration worse than waiting for it. But if one feels the call, one must write. I feel it in my body, not so much a bone-feeling, but more of an aura-feeling: it is innate and undisguised in the core of my being that I have a need, a physical need, to write, and I must fulfill the obligation for which I have been formed.
I am nothing but a rule-follower, and thusly a hypocrite: I rail against following the rules, against subjecting one's conscious to the mob mentality of the crowds of lemmings that fill the streets to their breaking point, and yet I cannot do anything but succumb to the call I hear to paper, to pencil, to keyboard, to words, to letters, to syntax, to diction, to paragraphs, to metaphor. I hear the call. (Do you feel what I feel?) I must go. (Is it inside all of us? A common thread?) I am here. (Will you? Do you?...Do I?) I must go and I am here.
I hear the call. It vibrates in my ears, rattles my nerves, shakes my eyes, seeps from my every pore, moves my feet, flicks my fingers.
I am a writer, and not a Writer. But the call is part of Writing.
I hear the call. I come.

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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

KatsK This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Apr. 28, 2012 at 6:42 pm
I totally feel this way . . . nobody I know understands! This is great.
TripleZee said...
Jun. 20, 2011 at 10:29 am
Love it, love it, LOVE IT! Makes so much sense... beautiful choice of words, I adore how you can make the reader truly feel your emotions! Please keep writing more:)
Zero_Kiryu This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 18, 2009 at 7:18 pm
I bow down to you! You are my favorite author on this sight, and you never disappoint. I love the emotion that just screams from every sentence, every word even, that you write. I love the idea of putting a leash on an idea. I've always struggled to pin down the feeling you get being a writer, and I think you've found just by saying that it's impossible to pin down. I. LOVE. THIS.
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