Sometimes, it happens. The perfect cup of coffee, the song that speaks to you or your characters, and the writing that flows, flows, flows. You chortle as the story practically writes itself. In the zone, you are one with your art. Best day ever!
However….most days it’s more like this: Write a sentence or two. Try to picture what another character’s reaction would be. Questions your main character’s sanity. Try to come up with a witty retort. Stare at screen. Know you have a deadline, even if only self-imposed, and find yourself freezing. Stare at screen. Tell yourself writing crap is better than nothing. Continue to tell yourself this, even when you don’t believe it.
And you know what? One thing clicks, falls into place. And then another. And another. You’re in the zone! And it’s an amazing place to be.
But you know what? If you hadn’t sat there, staring, feeling like you were beating your head against the proverbial wall (computer screen), it would never have happened. Sometimes daily discipline is all that keeps us going, and without it, the zone would be unattainable. So, never give up, even when you’re not in the zone. It will come, even if it may be another day or two away.
However, never mistake being in the zone for perfect prose. Editing and revision are always necessary…..