Your Guardian Muse: Boundaries That Don’t Box You In

18, Jun 2013 by Mary Muse">Mary Muse in Brainstorming,Writing Craft     No Comments

By Mary Caelsto

As writers we are constantly setting boundaries in our careers without our even knowing it. We decide which publishers to write for and which stories we want to write. Even the groups we network in or the organizations we join are decisions made based on the boundaries. We utilize boundaries in our careers all the time. The trick is knowing which ones serve us and which ones do not.

That’s where our Guardian Muse comes into play. By invoking our Guardian Muse, a one of the super powers of our muse that helps protect our careers, we can see which boundaries are good (such as not having distractions during writing time) and which might be boxing us in (for example, not trying out for a new publisher because fear not being good enough or not handling the anthology topic well enough).

So how do we activate this particular super power of our muse? And in the larger question, how do we discover our muse’s super powers?

Well the good news is that every writer’s muse has these super powers. The Guardian Muse is simply one of nine. So how do you discover your own Guardian Muse?

First, sit down and brainstorm all the boundaries you have, think you need, or perceive, in your writing career. From needing uninterrupted time to writing to certain publishers you won’t submit to, list your boundaries. Now, categorize the boundaries. Which ones do you need and place upon yourself? (Like only submitting the publishers who pass your quality standard). Which ones would be nice? And which ones make you feel restrained?

Now, you have an idea of your boundaries, and your Guardian Muse, can help work with you to define them. Start thinking about which boundaries can be flexible. Sure, you might think that you can write that one particular story someday. Just not today. That’s an example of a flexible boundary.

And which ones make you feel boxed in? Tired of only writing a certain type of book? Wish you could write on a different piece of technology while waiting for a doctor’s appointment? Any decision you made which makes you feel as if you were stuck in a box falls into this category, and you need to get rid of anything which cuts off creativity.

Your Guardian Muse is designed to give you the power to do that. The Guardian Muse, even if we don’t name it, provides the ability for the writer to claim what she or he needs for his or her career. It allows the writer to say, “I need this” and “I won’t do this for good reasons”.

We all need boundaries. Think about sports. If there were no “out of bounds” then the sports games would be completely different. However, those boundaries can also constrain. Players aren’t able to move the ball as efficiently if they are up against a wall. But, those same boundaries create a playing field. They direct the play and they tell us where to go.

If you’re interested in learning more about activating and finding your Guardian Muse visit my website at, where I offer a free ebook on how to use your Guardian Muse to boost your career.

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