Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Power of Your Pen

Pick up your pen and hold it in your hand. Feel its weight and texture. Study its form and aspect. Sense its potential.

Can you see or imagine the ink that sloshes around in the barrel as you move it this way and that? Can you visualize the waves that crash from one shore to the next — waves of blue or black or, if you’re more fanciful in your implements, magenta or fuchsia?

Your words bob up and down in that sea of ink, in that ocean of story that ebbs and flows from barrel to nib to page.

Don’t push your pen as you set it down on the pristine whiteness of the virginal page. Follow it. Allow it to carry you on a wondrous journey as you surrender to it and allow it to chart the course of your creativity.

Follow your pen. Let it guide you on a safari into the darkest of Amazon jungles, the uncharted territory of your deepest self.

Your pen will map out the journey, inking your itinerary as it forms before your eyes, allowing you and your readers the freshness of new experience.

Follow your pen, as I do at this moment, not knowing where it will carry me, allowing my terror to exist side-by-side with my awe and wonder, each word emerging despite my resistance to it.

I, too, fear the unknown, despair at the necessary surrender. I, too, long to know how this sentence will end and who I will be when it does.

I cannot know...need not times dare not know.

All any of us can do who are called to this journey is place one word after the next and then another and then another, allowing the power of our pen — or of our fingers skipping across the keyboard — to chart the way, pen stroke by pen stroke, pixel by pixel, moment by moment, breath by breath.

~ excerpted from The Voice of the Muse: Answering the Call to Write by Mark David Gerson (c) 2008

For additional tips and inspiration, pick up a copy of The Voice of the Muse: Answering the Call to Write and The Voice of the Muse Companion CD from my online bookstore, and be sure to ask for a signed copy of the book. Both are also sold on Amazon

The ebook is available for Kindle, Nook, iBook and Kobo. Download an MP3 version of the CD at CD Baby, iTunes and Amazon

Fountain pen images: #1 unknown; #2 Athena

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