I spent years just wanting to write and only daydreaming about people actually reading my work. I wrote what I wanted when I wanted without a care about industry standards, ettiquette, or timelines.
When I decided to become an actual published writer I faced many realities. One of these was that being a writer is not a business, but being an author is. Being an author - or aspiring author - means binding yourself to the industry and working within its boundaries.
No matter how much the writer in me wants to continue flitting away with Galileo, the author see the deadline for the Wizard short story anthology and knows I need to pick up Sorcerer's Carnival and finish the final draft.
How to change your train of thought? Well, as a newbie aspiring AUTHOR, I'm still figuring this out. I've gotten focus, revision, and ruthless editing well on its way...but all within the frame of what my muse wants to write.
Okay, okay...enough whining to you. This is what I've started to develop in reference to forcing my muse to work within my needs (don't tell her it's forcing...because it's more like "persuading")
I allow myself about 30 minutes to just brainstorm what my thoughts - or my muses thoughts - have been on her favorite story at the moment. Then I tuck those notes away, gently and with much praise to my muse on the creativity, and open up the manuscript I need to finish.
At this point my muse is a little confused and deciding whether to stalk away or sit and pout. To ease her interest in my direction I review the storyboard and feign excitement over the original idea she put in my head (usually at 2 in the morning on a weekday).
She will then do one of three things: jump into the idea and start going with excitement, sniff in reluctant acceptance and start working with me slowly, or she'll be a bitch and stalk off until I work on what she wants.
The first two are what I'm always hoping for, because the third option leaves me sitting at the laptop wondering what to do next and begging her to return for the day.
So, that's my semi-tip for the day. I'm off to...persuade my muse and jumpstart Sorcerer's Carnival.
Good writing all!