Then the doctor said something to me that really helped: "Sleep begets sleep."
And he was right. On the days she took long luxurious naps, she tended to sleep through the night.
As I embarked on my first PiBoIdMo (Picture Book Idea Month), I realized that creativity works much the same way. The more energy I put towards it, the more it flows. Ideas beget ideas! I should know this. I should believe this. But somehow, I sort of... didn't.
On day 1, it felt forced, like I had to try a little too hard to squeeze out one measly, puny idea. My inner worry-wart piped right up. If the first idea is this hard, how will I possibly come up with twenty-nine more?!?
But then something I wrote in my notebook sparked the seed of another idea, and then I had two or three more after that. And the next day I was reaching for that notebook all day long. Eureka! This works.
Sure, not every idea is a keeper. Most aren't. But so what? Even if they are just roundabout, mixed up ways to a decent idea, then they are worthy.
I guess I never really realized it, but until now, I sort of believed in the Magic Muse. Somedays she shines her light on you, other days--not so much. The knowledge that I have the ability to turn on the tap of ideas and get it flowing is empowering. (And a relief.)
So thank you, Tara Lazar! And thank you to all of you PiBoIdMo-ers who are scribbling and blogging and cheering each other on. Inspiration begets inspiration! And you guys are super-inspiring.