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Sources of Inspiration: Ritual

The waters of creativity and inspiration are dryer and shallower than ever. You’d think trouble would be a bountiful source of inspiration. Many a writer has tapped it, creating great literature because of it. I doubt we’d have Lord of the Rings if not for World War II. It might have been a very different trilogy if not for the tragedy and changes which faced England and the world in the wake of it. We’re facing tragedy and change right now, too. Not being a particularly brave or heroic person, I want to hide from it. I yearn to wrap myself up in the ghost of past stories and snuggle myself away from everything, especially my own lack of hope.

When there’s no hope, there’s still ritual. I can get myself in the habit of writing every day in a certain time and place. I let those around me know my plans, work with them to do this. (Except for the cats. There’s no working with them. They’re not going to cooperate unless they feel like it. They often want to cope with everything by being overfed. I just have to work around them. I’m very grateful for their feline antics right now, for they’ve been a great source of cheer during the anxiety, not to mention a shared stress reliever for my husband and myself.) At any rate, I get myself into the habit of writing at certain times of the day. I make a ritual out of it, no matter how uninspired I feel, or how lousy the results are.

As I said in a previous article, sometimes just getting myself to write gets me inspired. Once I’m in the habit of writing, it becomes easier. Plus it’s amazing how much I can accomplish once I establish this ritual of writing. Accomplishment is a source of hope for me, even if it’s just a small flicker of hope. I’ll take all the hope I can get right now.

What about you, dear reader? Do you have any rituals which have helped keep your spirits up? Or any which have just kept you going in these troubled times?

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