Parsifal, Wagner, and the Muse

Parisfal - Creator - Hermann Hendrich PD-Art Wikimedia CommonsThings are back to normal here at La Casa del Jasperson–at least, as normal as the interior of a spinning blender ever is. I strive to create a zen-like home to compensate for the strange detours life takes us on. The way my creative mind works, I need to have an orderly environment or I can’t focus on my work.

Epilepsy is disorderly in the extreme! Dealing with hospitals and life-changing events takes a toll on one’s creativity. Worrying that the new medicine won’t work, or your loved one won’t be able to tolerate the poison is terribly stressful. Thus, despite the fact that I brought my lap-top and spent the same number of hours staring at the screen this last week, I accomplished very little, other than taking my main characters a few steps closer to their doom.  I managed only 3000 words for seven days of writing.

But that changed yesterday when I managed to write 1200 words in one productive hour. The reason my hour was so productive is this—> Three weeks ago, before life took the side-trip, I was suffering from a bout of writer’s block.

I’ve always known what was going to happen with this tale, but I was writing it by the seat of my pants, as usual! SO in desperation, two weeks ago I made a 3000 word outline of where I wanted the story to go, right down to the epilogue. Immediately, I was able to get the story moving again.

I know!  It’s genius! I took my own advice!

During this week of worry and stress, I spent a lot of time out on Wikimedia Creative Commons looking at some of the greatest art ever collected. It is humbling to realize that these artists saw no great rewards for their work, in fact they were barely able to eke out a living at it. I came across the picture that graces todays post, Parsifal, by Hermann Hendrich.  The castle in the background is exactly the sort of place my characters have found themselves. The fir trees and the remoteness of this picture gave a form to my idea, and I was more easily able to create the story of what happens next.

The interesting thing is, Hendrich got his imagination jump started by having seen the Wagnerian opera, Tannhäuser(YouTube link here!)

Go figure–an artistic type whose muse is fired up by big, loud, epic music!  Of course I was captivated.  The creative process that others experience is as interesting to me as is their final, amazing product.

Today, it is  7:28 a.m. on an early spring Sunday.  I am listening to loud German opera overtures via YouTube and mentally preparing to get 3000 or more words written today.

So as the world here in Olympia (the navel of the universe) gets back to normal, all will end well for my heroes…or will it…heh heh….


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