I believe it's also important to go to other forms and sources. Inspiration and clarity can blossom from song, poetry and even silence.
I always try to learn the rules, if for no other reason than to break them. It's important to know the right way to bend an idea - so the integrity and beauty increase, rather than disperse. So I'm popping pockets of poetry, wrapping myself in melody, and letting in the notions and isms of a wider written perimeter.
These songs have been framing my current novel's state of mind: