Ten Things I Hate About You

A writer and her muse, the on going love affair…love dreams

I hate the way you keep me up at night
And the way you leave me stranded without foresight.
I hate the way you take control on the page.
I hate it when you sabotage my language.
I hate your manic drive, even your whimsy
And the way you drag me along.
I hate you so much it makes me pray to unknown Gods.
It even makes me write parodies.

I hate it…
I hate the way your fervor pushes me to hone.
I hate it when you’re gone.
I hate it when your magic makes me soar, like I can do no wrong;
Even worse, is when you make me feel I belong.

I hate it when you go silent
And the fact that you expect me to carry on,
But mostly I hate the way I don’t hate you;

Not that I should if I would;
Not that I don’t even when I do;
Not that I want to, even if I could.


Maybe you don’t have a muse, but if you did, would you give him/her a name? My muse’s name is Tobias. Of course, he’s lanky grey-eyed, and often traveling, leaving me to my inner sanctum writing parodies. Sad.

Where is your muse today?



I’m a writer and hoarder of one-size-fits-all panty hose. Until the hose fits over my bum, I write to provide an alternative view on writing and perfection.

55 thoughts on “Ten Things I Hate About You

  1. Kim

    I suppose my muse is the world and people around me. I get inspired by the most random things (and not so random of course). Sometimes it’s serious, other times it’s whimsical. Sometimes it’s hilarious and somewhat inappropriate. My muse, whoever or whatever it is, often has a dirty sense of humor. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    Thanks for sharing an awesome post!
    Kim recently posted….From A Different PerspectiveMy Profile

  2. I keep several Muses (or they keep me, perhaps). There’s a playful little girl, a serious and somewhat angry co-ed, a goddess or five, and oh, yes. My male Muse.

    He’s tall and lanky, green eyes, dark hair, about 15 years younger than me, but who’s counting? He lies besides me in one of those big beds with the gauzy canopy curtains, stroking my body with his fingertips and begging me to read him the sexiest parts of my latest WIP.

    Baby, where you been?
    Beverly Diehl recently posted….Two of the Times Someone Raped Me (Part II) #saam #rapeMy Profile

    • JoAnne Braley

      Muses…the word became popular after “Shakespeare in Love.” As for me, I realized I have three personas, the good girl, Mary Jo; the wild one, Joanna; and Bertha, who appears to straighten out the mess the good and the bad have made…she’s the sensible, and no nonsense, so there, person. As for writing about what you know or don’t know (previous article) I’m now waking up to why God let me travel in so many various destinations, and have all sorts of people as confidants…hoo ray…been there done that either with my mind, or my friends’.

      • Joanne – with all the travel behind your belt you must have stories aplenty to share. Do you post to a blog? I like that you have personas. I think we all do, whether we admit it is another thing entirely.

  3. I have to court my muse. Sit quietly, read a writing book, stare. When I sit down with my WIP, I need to light candles. It’s a signal, an invitation. So so different from writing non-fiction. It scares me (it’s not completely under my control, like revisions are) but is fascinating. It’s a whole new experience and I’m just beginning to get the hang of it.

    Wonderful post, Brenda. The language and shadings. . .love it.
    June O’Hara recently posted….The Facebook DebacleMy Profile

    • June – I am so happy for you and your foray into the darkness of fiction. It’s not for everyone, but if you like it you’ll end up falling in love.

  4. My muse is schizophrenic. You never knew which personality she’s going to assume from day to day. Some days she’s a profound literary writer, maybe for a season she’ll dictate in a Flannery O’Conner manner. And next time I hear from her she’s sounding a bit didactic. You just never know with her. Or him. I like that literacy voice I hear when taking dictation from that particular personality, but when the didact shows up, I’m not as certain of the work, although I do still send it out there and most often get it published in magazines looking for that particular voice. It’s a wild ride honey 😉 And I’m loving every minute of it. A love/hate relationship with the muse – never thought of it that way.
    Debra recently posted….A Lonely Place ApartMy Profile

    • JoAnne Braley

      I’m glad to hear there are writers such as I am. In fact, some things I dare not print, yet I went to a nice Catholic boarding school for some years! I’m afraid television, certain plays, and various stations of life have caused these variations on my usually moderate theme. Black humor became introduced, also. However, I can laugh at such, because of my Irish genes. But, I depend on the German ones to get me back on track and do something, and the Scottish ones to watch out for waste. You know how awful it was living in those “romantic” days, of say Queen Elizabeth. The next time you wish you were there, look at some of the torture machines that toted around!

      • Joanne – you are not alone. I am almost a native Californian (move here when I was but two) but married a Brit. After spending several years in old Blighty, as my mom-in-law referred to it, my humor is permanently blackened.

    • Debra – Woman, how the heck are you? Must write. I am never the literary type, but respect those who are. You must hit the submit button and share your voices.

  5. Great poem and concept. Hmm, I am so unimaginative! I have no identifiable muse. I mean I have no image of a muse or a name for one. Perhaps that’s the difference between someone who writes, and a writer. I write, but I wouldn’t call myself a writer. You would, of course. A poet. What do you think of that distinction?
    Galen Pearl recently posted….Witness to a Random Act of KindnessMy Profile

    • Galen, thanks for thinking of me as a poet (Oh I wish). I do think everyone is a writer. We all write. I do think the distinction is not everything body is willing to give up chunks of time day after day, edit and revise the story or memoir, submit, and start all over again…

  6. It probably won’t come as much of a shock, Brenda, but I always talk to God before I write, when I’m searching for an idea, or if I have slightest qualm that I could draw a blank. When I was writing my novel was when I first realized His presence through the Holy Spirit. It was as if He were sitting right beside me as a wrote and filling my head with words and situations which seemed to come out of nowhere. This presence was so palpable, every day, when I sat down at the computer, I would say aloud, “Okay, God, what would You have me write today?”
    He has yet to fail me . . .
    Blessings, my friend!
    Martha Orlando recently posted….Grey Makes the Day!My Profile

    • Mike – seriously? Ours are probably friends, unless of course, yours is more of a Zelda, real and trouble with a capital T.

    • JoAnne Braley

      I believe I got my various “voices,” from getting right into the books, from comic to classics, when I was young…same for movies. You can gather personalities from getting into the screen, etc. Mom and friends said I got so absorbed I didn’t hear them calling my name. Then, when you need a personality you can “pull it up,” out of storage.

      • Hi Joanne – I like your mom’s advice. I do believe our past is a treasure trove for our stories. I am always dragging some tidbit of my life into a story. I’ve only modeled one character after someone I know – the illusive first love. Since everything I’ve written or whom I’ve written about is fresh of the printing press.

  7. I don’t know – I guess I’ve never felt like I had a muse. Darn-it, no one to blame but myself when I’m not working. Though I do feel my characters overcome my thoughts when I’m in the groove and I lose myself in the world I’m writing about.

    Perhaps, it is just the words that serve me. I will, in times of drought, thumb through the dictionary or browse through lists like those on wordnik.com to replenish the tanks.
    Lynne Favreau recently posted….Letter to my Daughters: Real and ImaginedMy Profile

    • Lynne – I don’t think it matters so long as you and your words hook up, do a dance, and live outside of your head. That’s a good thing.

  8. Love your ode to your muse. I sing along with mine … Music is its name. There are few days when I don’t have tunes on while I’m writing. Sometimes it is just to get me rolling and then I invite Quiet to move in. Other times Music carries me through the day. Gotta have it!
    Patricia Sands recently posted….Sweet!My Profile

    • Patricia – I’m with you about Music. I am always lost in a tune and where I go when I am looking for something I can quite see.

  9. Geez I have enough trouble managing the stuff in my own head without dragging in a contrary Muse , who, now I think of it, is already well ensconced there…hiding out, constantly undermining my best attempts and generally having a whale of a time at my expense. Get thee gone Musette! Leave me be and let me write!
    Love your poem Brenda – slices to the quick and always with a smile! :) Love and hugs xxx
    Edith recently posted….Womag Queen, or The Ghost and Mrs KathMy Profile

    • Hola Edith, of course she/he is hiding in the corners of your mind, lucky and ready to jump out when you least expect it. Not entirely my poem, the words are mine but I borrowed the format, thus a parody, from the movie of the same name.

  10. Uh-oh Brenda – now you better write a 12 things I love about you (just to outnumber the 10 here) poem so as not to piss Tobias off to the point he leaves you for a while longer than you’d like or want.

    I haven’t named my muse. I haven’t put a physical form to him/her…..maybe that’s part of my problem. i light a candle and take several deep breaths with eyes closed before diving in…..
    Barbara recently posted….Doodles DietMy Profile

    • Barbara – I don’t think he will leave me permanently, but he can be cruel, which is why I keep a journal of ideas and those random thoughts that appear out of nowhere. I do like the idea of a lanky literary type wandering through my mind and leaving me clues. If only, heh?

  11. k~

    Oh my heck… Tobias? Well, there goes another interesting moment of serendipity. I participated in a prompt exchange through Scriptic this week that involved a letter. I wrote the letter to… Tobias. (shakes her head and laughs)…

    Muse… heh.
    k~ recently posted….Letters Better Kept (Scriptic)My Profile

    • Ah, Monica, that can be tough. I sure hope you keep a journal for your ideas when your muse is off having a good time without you.

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