Sometimes I think it would be nice to just live through my writings. To stop trying to go out and meet people and experience life and just create my own imaginary life in my head and on paper. (Or rather, on the screen — will we ever let go of that antiquated and environmentally unfriendly idea of writing on paper? I hope not.) It would be nice to just give everything a happy ending. Tie it up with a nice pretty bow. I like stories with happy endings. Even tragic endings can be cathartic in their own way. You can cry your heart out about something that doesn’t exist and doesn’t matter without thinking about the messy, tangled tragedies of your own life. The ones without closure. The ones that never quite ended in your psyche, that get stuck and replay somewhere in the middle like a scratched record. Over and over without end.
When I read a book or look back at old stories I’ve written, they’re like memories, only tidier. They’re self-contained. Even the ones with many chapters can clearly be divided into smaller, more easily digestible chunks. They are linear. If there are multiple plotlines within the larger narrative, their various pieces are organized in a sensible way, such that they fit together in some sort of coherent whole, crossing and mixing where necessary, but in a way that all makes sense in the end. It’s like life, but untangled and rewoven into something orderly and beautiful.
It’s wonderful and terrifying to fall in love. To be in love. That’s what so many stories are about. But I’ve done that. I don’t know if I ever want to do it again. It’s impossibly messy. It’s fantastic when you’re in it and everything’s going smoothly. But it can also get very rough. Not just like gravel road type rough. It can be like tumbling head over heels down a barren rocky mountainside rough, leaving you battered and broken at the bottom. Some people like the thrill and risk of mountain climbing and skydiving. But I don’t think I know many writers who do.
I think I fall in love too easily. And when I do, I fall HARD. I don’t fall out of love easily, even when I wish I could. Even when I know I should. I think I need to be in love with someone safe to protect me from falling in love with someone dangerous.
Perhaps I could just fall in love with my Muse. If he’ll have me. He can be fickle, but I don’t think he would leave me completely like real people do. Not forever, at least. I hope. He can be infuriatingly mischievous, snatching the pen from my hand just when I think I’ve finally found that one perfect word I was searching for. Or downright mean when he slams the computer shut and throws it out the window so I can’t write anything for the rest of the day or week. But real people do those sorts of things too.
He’s a fantastic lover. I can do all sorts of things with him that I’ve never done, and undoubtedly will never do, with real people, in real life. We can go anywhere, do anything. He can morph into multiple people, embodying whatever genders, whatever physical and personality traits I choose. He can be quite accommodating like that. He can even transform me into some better version of myself, or into someone else entirely. I’ve yet to meet a real-life man that can top that.
It would require some relationship maintenance, as with anyone else. Some compromise. Some give and take. If I try to push him too hard, he can get very moody and turn my words against me, turn my attempts at poetic phrases into stuttering gibberish. Sometimes I really need the sleep, but he wakes me up in the middle of the night, raring to go, wanting to splash his verbal juices all over my screen. That’s alright though. Those nights always turn out pretty satisfying for both of us in the end. Other times, I’m in the mood but he’s off doing who-knows-what without me and just can’t be bothered to come back. But I know he always will eventually.
And then there are the times when we get into a really nice flow. When we’re both on the same page, living and laughing and loving together, crying and raging and healing in sync. Those are really good times. And actually, now that I think about it, I think I’ve had more good moments like that with my Muse than I ever have with a real person. Maybe he really is the best match for me. Maybe I’m already a little bit in love with him.
The best thing about my Muse is that all of my memories with him have endings. Some are happy. Some are not. But they are tidy. They are complete. Some have not ended yet. But we’ll get back in there and finish them eventually. When it’s time. When we’re both in the right mood. I think the only way to live that elusive fairytale happy-ending love story is with your Muse. All real-life love stories are messy. All of them. Because life is messy. But with my Muse Man, my inner life happens in neat little pieces, with clean polished edges. We can have as many happy endings as we want together. And then start a whole new story. We can fall in love all over again and decide the outcome before we even start, if that’s what we want. Or we can just let it unfold organically, making it up as we go along. There are infinite variations with infinite endings. But we get to decide how it ends. And it always ends.