I am a dog. Writing is a flea. When it bites, I have to scratch. Once I get that itch to write, I'm done for. It could be five minutes before I have to go to work. I'll write to the bitter end. It could be two hours after when I said, with a yawn, I should go to bed. I'll write till sunrise. Now, I don't feel as bad about scratching my flea bites as I do about my scratching my book-buying itch. But in either case, people usually try to assuage my conscience, pointing out that buying books is a pretty good "addiciton," compared to others, and that if I'm a writer by nature, I should pursue my talent. Maybe so. I feel okay -- until the next flea bite leaves me hungover.
For my health's sake, I'm glad the flea doesn't bite all the time. I asked myself today: what is my muse? What sets me off to write? Some people use a disicplined schedule. Some people need a special room. Some people rely on music. My flea seems to bite at random. And he seems to bound away just as unexpectedly. Although, as I think back, he (she?) does chomp more feverishly at night. Maybe I'm just a nocturnal scribbler. Cake says Satan is its motor. Maybe the moon is my muse.