Here’s Jennifer Roland on awakening your muse

My guest today is Jennifer Roland, author of 10 Takes on Writing – her interviews with ten authors who live in the Pacific Northwest. This is her second stop of her Wow! Women on Writing virtual book tour.


Please welcome Jennifer and her words about finding inspiration about writing and how to keep our seats in the chair even when your muse has escaped out the back door. For me, walking – especially on the beach works. I look at the ocean, take pictures of the gardens I pass along the way, look up at the clouds, and pretty soon, I’m ready to sit down and write. Please share what you do to awaken your muse.

Here’s Jennifer: 

How to Find Inspiration Even When It Seems Impossible
by Jennifer Roland

As writers, we have a love/hate relationship with the muse.

When the muse comes to visit, it’s all wonderful. The ideas flow. Every word is a little bit of magic, and they come together with ease.

So what’s the problem?

That darn muse doesn’t come every day. Sometimes, you don’t see your muse for weeks or months. If you’re writing for a living, it can be torture as you force yourself to fulfill your daily word count.

Writing for pleasure? Still torture and that kinda kills the whole pleasure thing.

How can you move past your muse and keep writing?

Get rested

As a business writer, wife, and mother, I’ve got a lot to take care of. And all of that marketing and PR writing can drain my well of inspiration.

My number one tactic when I’m not able to write is to get more sleep. I simply cannot force myself to get  good ideas and execute them when I’m too tired.

Start a ritual

Eric Witchey shared some of his pre-writing ritual when I interviewed him for the book. It’s somewhat elaborate, but he’s been doing it so long that it gets him immediately into a writing flow.

After we talked, I realized I’d gotten myself into a really unhealthy ritual. I eat a bowl a salt and black pepper Kettle Chips while I write. The hit of simple carbohydrates gives me fast energy after a long day. The chips are delicious, but I’ve been trying to break the habit and find a new writing trigger.

Step Away from the notebook/computer

BICHOK (butt in chair, hands on keyboard) is great. But if you can’t get your hands to move, maybe you need to take some time away from your writing. In an interview for an article in The Writer a few years back, Laurie Helgoe told me that she did most of the writing of her book Introvert Power while she was raking leaves, going for walks you know, anything but sitting in front of the computer.

The blank page can seem like it’s mocking you, and that feeling gets in your head and prevents you from writing. Stepping away and doing a completely unrelated activity can free you from the pressure and get you creativity flowing again.

How do you find inspiration when you just don’t feel like writing? Tell us in the comments below.


Thanks so much, Jennifer, for the great words of advice.

Book Summary: From novelists to poets to playwrights, Jennifer Roland interviews a variety of authors who have one thing in common they have all chosen to make the Pacific Northwest their home. Covering a diversity of disciplines from comics, fantasy, and detective novels to long-form poetry and illustrated children’s series 10 distinguished authors provide unique perspectives about their craft, provide helpful writing advice and tips for success, and share their passion for living and writing in the Pacific Northwest.


jenAbout the Author: Jennifer Roland is a freelance and marketing writer with more than 20 years experience in newspaper, magazine, and marketing environments. Jennifer also works as a virtual assistant to writers, helping them build their online presence and connect with readers so they can focus on what they love writing. She loves fiction and writes that under the name Jennifer C. Rodland. She hopes to put all of the lessons she learned writing this book into getting more of that published.

Jennifer can be found online at:


  1. Thanks so much for hosting me, Madeline! I hope your readers enjoy my tips for finding the muse.

    • Madeline Sharples says:

      My pleasure. I love your views on keeping the muse alive. Wishing you huge luck for your book’s success.

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