According to Wikipedia.com, Muses originated in Greek Mythology. Nine daughters of god and goddess Zeus and Mnemosyne named Calliope, Clio, Euterpe, Erato, Melpomene, Polyhymnia, Terpsichore, Thalia, and Urania, were said to be the goddesses of the inspiration of literature, science, and the arts.
As far as I can tell, most writers that talk about their muse are not referring to any of the nine goddesses of Greek Mythology. However, some writers speak of a spirit or guide outside themselves that inspires them to write well and with ease. Some assign their muse a name and say that their muse has a personality and a presence. Some say that they write so furiously under the influence of their muse that they don’t know what they have written until they have read it afterward.
Writers with muses vary in their concept of the muse’s origin. One writer from my research spoke of her muse as possibly being a part of her own imagination inspiring her writing. If you wish to see her comment to a blog post about muses, click on the link at the bottom of this post and read the comments. This same blog contains a video of an author in which she speaks on the subject. She spends a lot of time getting to the subject, but she is a good speaker and what she said was interesting. It didn’t solve the mystery of the muse for me.
Researching this subject has made me curious. I wonder how many writers have muses compared with those that do not. I was unsuccessful in finding the right search term that would expose this information. Apparently, writers without muses don’t talk about it, or perhaps I didn’t find the right key word to search for their conversations.
I am not expressing an opinion about muses. I have nothing to offer but my research. I don’t have a muse. If I had a muse, I could say on any day that I couldn’t think of a thing to write that my muse didn’t show up. At least I’d have someone to blame for my wordless days.
I invite writers with or without a muse to contribute to conversation about this post. Tell me more if you please.